I started writing this post with the idea that I could do a Photography Tutorial like I have seen done before. As I began writing, I realized that I am not the best person to explain how to take photographs. I was looking definitions up and thought to myself, "What am I doing?" I should just tell others what I know versus looking up definitions. I could show you if you were here. . .
Being a self-taught photographer, I just learned as I went and practiced like crazy. I still practice like crazy. So to explain white-balance, aperture, shutter speed in words, etc. I am clueless. But, I know how to use my camera. I know how to adjust my settings to get the outcome I want.
Here are few bits of things that I do know:
#1 GET A DIGITAL SLR
If you are serious about learning how to take good pictures, buy a digital SLR. It will be more money than your point and shoot, but well worth the investment. I love being able to see the picture I have taken immediately. That way, if it doesn't turn out the way that I want it to, I can adjust my settings and take another.
#2 PRACTICE. PRACTICE. PRACTICE.
This is the best thing that you can do to get better at anything. If you have kids, you have models to practice on all the time. I love to just follow them around and capture candid shots. It gives me a peek into their world.
Use inanimate objects around your house to practice on. A fruit bowl, a vase of flowers, books etc. Go outside and take pictures of the leaves, flowers, rocks, the mountains, rolling hills, buildings, doors. . .There are always things to photograph.
#3 TRY DIFFERENT ANGLES
When photographing subjects, try different angles. Come from the side, get down on the ground and point your camera up. Or, like this picture, look down on your subject. I think that different angles create unique pictures.
I think most people are used to pictures where the subject is in the middle of the photograph. Try off centering your subject. The picture is more interesting that way.
#5 LIGHTING IS KEY
Lighting is the most important factor in Photography. The best time to take pictures is early morning or late afternoon when the sun is not as harsh and as high in the sky. I hate having to deal with shadows and harsh lighting. I've learned that using the shade when the sun is harsh can work. It's not the best, but you don't have to deal with the shadows. This one was taken in the shade. I did have to playaround with the white balance to make the colors look more natural.
So there you have it. Some of the things that have worked for me.