Get the Picture: A Simple Guide to Better Photos

There’s just something picture perfect about this time of year – it never falls short in Kodak moments. Whether you’re new to digital photography or experienced behind a lens, get more out of your photos this season with a couple of tips from our creative team:

1. Equipment

Make sure you are properly equipped before your shoot. If you are shooting from a distance, bring a larger lens, and consider using a tripod to ensure that your camera stays balanced. 

2. Lighting

When shooting outdoors, lighting makes all the difference. Be strategic. The best times for outdoor photography are around sunrise, sunset or on cloudy days when there are no harsh shadows. 

3. Composition/Rule of Thirds

When looking through a camera lens, remember the Rule of Thirds. Think of your frame as a grid divided into 9 equal units. The horizon line should sit either on the upper or lower third of the frame, and the subject matter should fill two thirds of the grid.  

4. Focal point 

The focal point should be the most important subject matter in a composition. Play with the lens focus. The more blurry the background becomes, the stronger the focal point will appear. 

5. Perspective

Whether shooting your photo from above, below or straight on, different perspectives can enhance the shot and create a more compelling image. How might the photo look from a different angle? Don't be afraid to use some elbow grease. 

6. Aperture

Aperture is, simply, the opening of the camera lens. More than that, it can mean the difference between one-dimensional and two-dimensional shots. The higher the aperture f-stop number, the smaller the lens will open when taking a photo. The smaller the lens, the less depth of field – adding more contrast between the focal point and background of your shots.

7. Shutter speed

Transcend time in your photos by adjusting the shutter speed. A powerful tool, shutter speed can either convey or freeze motion – depending on what effect you’d like to produce. To freeze motion and shoot a specific moment in time, choose a faster shutter speed; to show motion and portray a time progression, select a slower shutter speed. 

8. ISO

In environments where lighting is at an extreme, try adjusting the ISO – the sensitivity of the camera to light. In low-lit environments, increase the ISO to capture your subject through darkness; in bright environments, decrease the ISO. 

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