NOTE: I apologize for not posting the rest of these tips on a daily basis as originally planned. Sometimes life throws us curves which interfere with the best intentioned plans. To catch up on time, all remaining tips will be published in this post. Thanks for understanding!
Do you scrapbook your photographs? Or do you feel your photos aren't scrapbook worthy because they never come out as well as you would like? Are you somewhat intimidated by taking photos, because you really don't know how to take good pictures?
Over the next week and a half, I am going to share Ten Tips that I learned from our friends at KODAK-the picture experts! Once you've learned these tips and apply this knowledge to your photo shoots, you will see the quality of your pictures improve, and you'll feel much more confident about picture-taking! Be sure to check back here for a photo-taking tip each day, that will help you take better photographs with your digital camera!
The next step after taking good pictures, is knowing how to make great scrapbook pages with them! I teach rubber stamping and Scrapbooking 101 classes every month at my in-home studio in Hardyston NJ using Stampin' Up! stamps, Simply Scrappin'™ products and accessories, Designer Series Papers and much more, so make sure you check out my CLASS CALENDAR too! If you attend these classes in person each month, you will receive hands-on experience creating eye-appealing layouts, with attractive colors, titles and journaling-all necessary components to putting together a great scrapbook page! When you combine your newly found knowledge of good picture-taking, with the steps to creating fantastic scrapbook pages, you will be so excited to make some beautiful pages you and your family will cherish for years to come!
Tip#6: LOCK THE FOCUS!
Following up on subject placement, most cameras will lock the focus on the center of the picture. As we just discussed in Tip #5, the best photo is not always with the subject in the center, but off-center. So if you want a clear, non-blurry photo of your subject off-center, here's a trick to use with your camera: with the subject in the middle of the photo, lock the focus pressing and holding the shutter button halfway, then move your camera to position the subject out of the center. Now you can press the shutter button down the rest of the way and take your picture!
Tip#7: TO FLASH OR NOT TO FLASH!
Do you know the flash range of your camera? If you take photos beyond the maximum flash range of your camera, your photos may turn out too dark. The usual maximum flash range is up to fifteen feet (approximately five steps from the camera).
If you don't know the maximum flash range of your camera, it's better to take the photos from ten feet away from your subject. If using film cameras, check into a higher speed film for extended distances.
Most cameras include a fill-flash setting, but it's advisable to know when and how to use flash settings on your camera for situations when the lighting isn't quite right.
When to use FILL FLASH FEATURE of your camera:
- on bright sunny days or beach/snow photos which cause facial shadows to appear; also darker complexions and brimmed hats cause shadows or dark areas
- When lighting is coming from the side or back of the subject (this causes the subject to appear much darker)
- when taking photo at a great distance
- when shiny backgrounds (mirrors, sun, other bright reflections) reflect bright light
- a background sunset scene with your subject as a silhouette in the foreground
- when desired effect is light being reflected onto subject (glow in evening, light accent)
- when flash is not permitted
Other tips for optimum performance:
- Make sure your batteries are not running low, or you won't have full flash power
- To avoid red eye, brighten up the room with lighting to shrink pupils, and ask subjects not to look directly into the lens. Avoid use of the "red eye reduction" flash setting—to many people it's distracting and confusing.
Tip#8: Be Aware of Light Source!
Lighting is critical and makes all the difference in photos. Photos can be taken in any kind of weather, but it's important to know how to use the weather conditions for different affects. Surprisingly, the best time to take a photo isn't in the middle of a bright sunny day. On an overcast or cloudy day, portrait photos turn out great because there are no shadows to deal with. Flowers, more specifically pastel florals photograph best in this lighting. Landscapes photos are best taken earlier in the day or in the evening. Bright sunshine with side lighting can enhance wrinkles of an older person, but take the photo on a cloudy day and these wrinkles with be softened.
If the lighting is less than ideal, move your subject or the camera for a better shot.
In light rainy weather, you can capture the light reflecting off of the surrounding area for unusual photos.
Tip#9: SWITCH FROM LANDSCAPE TO PORTRAIT VIEWS!
If you look at photos you've taken, are most of them taken horizontally (landscape view)? This is typical because we tend to hold the camera this way. Group pictures are usually better taken horizontally.
Try changing it up now and then for portraits by turning your camera in the vertical (portrait) position. Full length or close-up pictures turn out great like this, as the emphasis is on your subject. Spotlighting historical sites or landscape markings are ideal for the vertical view. Give it a try!
Tip#10: YOU'RE IN CONTROL!
When you are in charge of taking the pictures, you become the picture director! It's up to you to decide where everyone will stand in a group photo, or where the best lighting for the picture is. It's up to you to guide a person in the proper way to stand, tip the head or hold a prop for a portrait photo. Here are a few tips for group and single portrait picture-taking:
TAKING A GROUP PHOTO
- Outdoor photos are best! Make sure the sun is lighting the faces of the group in sunny weather. Have the group set up by an object that portrays the event. Direct each person as to how to stand, what to hold, where to look. Try splitting a larger group into two smaller arrangements-several in each group. Remember the focus is on the group, so be sure there are no background distractions that may take away from the group.
- Indoor photos are fun too! Remember all the other tips you've learned here. Use your camera's flash feature, and stay within your camera's maximum flash range. Try to position a larger group in no more than two rows.
- Take a Self-portrait! Learn how to use the Self-Timer feature of your camera, or you can use the zoom feature and hold the camera at arm's length to take a photo of yourself! Use a wide-angle if your camera has a zoom lens. Try experimenting with photos of yourself in different settings, doing different tasks, or just being you! Try different facial expressions to portray various aspects of your own unique personality.
- Semi-formal portraits: cloudy day lighting is best to capture a soft, flattering look of your subject. Pay attention to distractions from your focal point such as busy backgrounds. Take full figure view or zoom in for a closer photo. Your camera should be at your subject's eye level. Guide the person as to which way to stand, turn the head or where to place the hands.
I HOPE YOU'VE ENJOYED THESE TIPS AND HAVE LEARNED A FEW THINGS ABOUT BETTER PICTURE-TAKING! GREAT PHOTOS ARE AN ESSENTIAL FIRST STEP WHEN CREATING BEAUTIFUL SCRAPBOOKS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY WILL CHERISH FOR YEARS TO COME!
THE NEXT STEP, IS LEARNING HOW TO TAKE THESE BEAUTIFUL PHOTOS AND CREATE PAGES USING STAMPS, SIMPLY SCRAPPING KITS, ACCESSORIES AND DESIGNER SERIES PAPERS! I TEACH SCRAPBOOKING 101 CLASSES WHERE YOU CAN LEARN ABOUT LAYOUTS, TITLES, JOURNALING AND ACCENTS, AND PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER!
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT SCRAPBOOKING 101 CLASSES I OFFER, CLICK ON THE CALENDAR ON THE RIGHT SIDEBAR OF THIS BLOG.
TO ENJOY SAMPLES OF SCRAPBOOK PAGES, STAMPED CARDS, AND MANY OTHER STAMPING TIPS EACH MONTH, ENTER YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN THE BOX ON THE TOP LEFT SIDEBAR TO JOIN MY MAILING LIST, AND RECEIVE MY MONTHLY PASSION FOR STAMPS NEWSLETTER!
Note to demonstrators: My CUSTOMER newsletter is meant for my customers, and prospective customers. If you are a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, please respect this is my customer list and do not sign up for my customer mailing list. Thank you.
Thanks for visiting! Come back soon...