Mastering Photography - How to Take Your Pictures to the Next Level

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When you've taken a few pictures and gotten a few compliments on your abilities, it's only natural to want to do more with your camera. But unless you're a professional, you might not know where to begin. If you're not looking to create a career out of photography, but you are looking to take your pictures to the next level, you need to follow these three simple tips.

Taking more pictures is the best way to start increasing your photo taking abilities. The more pictures you take, the more you will learn about how to compose a picture and how to create a beautiful result. Try taking pictures of everything around you, even bringing the camera with you during the day. Take pictures of nature and take pictures of architecture to see what works and what doesn't. When you get the photos back or you upload them to your computer, look at the pictures to see what worked and what did not. Make mental notes of what you could have done better with each picture. If you can, go back and try to take the picture again if you want to improve it.

Experience is really the best teacher for your picture taking. The more you try to take pictures, the better you will innately become - even if it doesn't seem like you're trying. Here are some quick tips that you can use when you are taking more pictures:


  • Think about how you are centering your subjects in the frame

  • Think about trying off center subjects, like bridges, for example to see what they look like

  • Think about the surrounding you are capturing as well as the main subject

  • Try different lightings

  • Try going in close to a subject and then taking it from far away and then zooming in


The second step to improving your pictures is a simple one that many of us just simply do not think to do - read your camera manual. Even if you don't have a digital camera with a million different functions, this manual is often the key to creating better pictures with minimal effort. Read the manual to see what advice it can give you as well as what other functions your camera might have that you didn't know it had. For example, on many digital cameras, there is a function for taking close up pictures of flowers, but many people don't realize this.

Sit down for an afternoon and read the manual and then try out what you find in the pages. You might find that you have been using the wrong film or that there are other settings that might have made the picture better. In any case, you need to find out what your camera can do before you can do more with it.

And finally, taking your picture taking to the next level is usually a matter of purchasing a better camera. Digital SLR cameras are the latest rage for camera hobbyists and professionals, but simply upgrading to a camera with a higher megapixel range can also offer you more clarity in your shots. If you have a standard film camera, you might want to experiment with lenses and different grades of film to see if you can increase your photo quality.

You might also want to consider taking a local class in photography. Often community centers will offer these classes on a regular basis, and they can help you network with other photography lovers as well as learn how to use your camera more effectively.

In the end, improving your camera skills is really a matter of experience and a matter of having the best equipment you can afford. After that, you just need to be out there taking more pictures to improve your chances of that winning shot.

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Grant Eckert is a writer for Maccaca. Maccaca is a leading Art and Photography | Social Network

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