5 Things to Learn as a Beginner Photographer
Here are some things you should learn as a beginner photographer.
There’s No Best Camera – or is it?
The first thing any aspiring photographer has to learn is that there’s no “best camera”.
Let me contradict myself.
And it is right in your hands.
Or on your desk.
Or on your shelf.
In the camera bag or in your pocket.
The best camera is the one that is available. If you have an old DSLR, no problem, shot with it. Or, if you don’t have yet a digital camera, only your phone, then take pictures with your phone.
You are never going to improve your photography if you don’t take photos.
And limitations can be good. Check out this article about how limitations are your best friend.
This is the most basic photography skill of all. Before learning any fancy stuff, you have to learn composition.
Even if you get perfect exposure out of the camera, and your pictures are razor-sharp, if they lack the creative touch, then they are no good. It is better to learn composition rules and best practices before all else. Even before learning how to use the manual mode (we’ll get to that later).
Learn how to compose photos.
I’ve written some articles for this purpose. Check out this one about the rule of thirds and this one about the leading lines in photography.
Next, you should learn how to use manual mode.
But don’t forget. This is only after we have gotten better – almost automated – with the composition.
I believe it is ok if you stick to one of the automated modes (aperture priority or shutter priority) until you pin down your composition. But straight after that, you should begin learning the manual mode.
Now that your composition is more creative, your exposure should be more creative too.
A great way to start is to hear individually how aperture and shutter speed works.
Developing an eye for photography
Next on the list is developing an eye for photography. You have to learn to think and see the world around you through the eyes of a photographer. This adds on the top of composition rules. You have to think about perspective, angles, light, shadows. All of these things.
This one is precious.
You can master composition.
Even, you can get a perfectly exposed photo on manual with your eyes closed.
But if you do not have an eye for photography, your photos, although correctly composed and exposed, will be boring.
What is so unique about the place, the wedding, or your client’s home? What is the trademark of the couple that makes the photoshoot so them? The fabric and designs on the clothes they wear, their accessories, their props, the style they have decorated their home, the colors. What is the place known for, what makes them stand out from the crowd? Often, the answer is in the details.(source)
The last one is the most important and we have to learn it at all times. We have to learn to fail. This is not only a basic photography skill, but also an intermediate, and an advanced skill.
I know the fear of failure can be paralyzing. I have felt it on my skin. When I began my journey in photography I was afraid of taking photos just because I might have not got the correct shot. And I missed out on a lot of experience because of this.
Sometimes, we can be outright silly. Check out this article I’ve written about mistakes beginner photographers make.
With time, I’ve learned to fail.
You have to do it too.
Not only that but also learn from these failures. These lessons are so important that you can’t miss out on them.
But the bottom line is this. If you don’t practice, you won’t fail. And if you don’t fail, you won’t make progress – regardless of where you are as a photographer. Beginner or Pro.
Learn to fail.
Now, these were 5 things that you should learn as a beginner photographer. What do you think a beginner photographer should learn?
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