How I shoot My Photos

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In the last few days, I’ve been asked many times how I shoot my pictures, which techniques I use and which is my camera. At this post, I answer to some of these questions and I establish a new segment on my blog. Photography

It’s been about 2 years that I started to take photography a little bit more serious. When I say serious, I mean that I don’t just lift my camera and shoot. I try to visualize my subject, to find the right viewing angle and to compose. I have to say that by the time I started to photograph with a camera, I stopped to use my smartphone for that almost by 90%! It has to be something special if I don’t have my camera to take a snapshot with my phone.

What do I use when going for photographs

Taking photographs is something that makes me feel relaxed. I forget my problems just by holding my DSLR and wandering around. What do I have with me?

  1. My camera
  2. Batteries
  3. Memory cards
  4. Tripod

Basically, this is all I need. The camera I use for the last 5 months is a Nikon D700 which if you ask me is probably the best full frame DSLR by Nikon. At this post, I am not going to confuse you with the lenses I use, I will do that in another post. Let’s see how I take my photos.

Some tips for your photos

Pick the right time

The best time to take a photo is very early in the morning or late in the afternoon. To say this in a different way, DO NOT SHOOT WHEN SUN IS ON ITS PEAK. When the sun is up in the sky, the quality of the light is really bad. This is the hard light as we say in photography. You do not want hard light unless you do a photo project in a studio!

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An example of hard (bad) light

Do you see this photo of me? This is the hard light. Taking pics in the middle of the day will result in most of the times with photos like this. Do you see how white my face is? We do not want this.

If you begin to take pics early in the morning and late in the evening, this will be a major step up to your photography portfolio!

Taken during the afternoon, in the footsteps of the Acropolis

If I took this pic a few hours earlier, the sun would have this yellowish color and would have destroyed my photo. Now, taken at the right time, this is a beautiful picture!

Early in the morning and late in the afternoon is what we call in photography GOLDEN HOUR.

The rule of thirds

Super very important and extremely easy to apply is the rule of thirds. That means to put your subject (subject is the main thing in your photograph, eg a person, your dog, a tree etc) not in the middle of the frame but in the right or the left side, like this photo below.

My wife in Prague

Do you see how more interesting this photo became when I framed my subject on the left side? Make the comparison with the next photo

Not so cool, eh?

My subject in the middle of the frame and the photo is being fu@#$% up 🙂

Try this tip in your next photos and let me know if you are happy with the outcome!

 

Get to know your camera, REALLY WELL!

I see many people carrying a fancy modern camera and they shoot in AUTO mode! Disaster if you ask me! It is like having a FERRARI and you drive with a maximum speed of 100 km/h!

Get to know your camera really good before going out to shoot! That’s why the companies give you the manual! Read it! Before I buy a new camera, a new lens or anything that has to do with my photos, I read many reviews about the product that interests me, and I get to know it really well by the time I purchase it. When I have it on my hands, I am almost familiar with its use. I hate seeing people holding a Canon 5D Mk III and shooting in AUTO! I have seen this with my own eyes! (Canon 5D Mk III is a professional DSLR)

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When I shoot landscapes I use the MANUAL MODE. When I shoot street photos or more candid photos I use the Program MODE with Exposure Compensation. I will explain these terms in an another post.

As far as it concerns me, I can use my camera even in the darkest situations! This is something I am proud of 🙂

Night photography in the pitch dark!

 

Use tripod when  shooting in the dark

The tripod is very important when doing landscape photography. It helps you to take your time to compose your frame, to include all the elements you want and to make all the necessary adjustments. One more major asset that tripod offers you is that you can shoot in low light situations. Like this one here

This pic was taken with almost no visible light in the sky, it was almost night time

If I didn’t have my tripod with me, I could not get this photo! Check the next photo to see the difference

I see almost nothing, do you?

A typical example of a night shoot without a tripod and a flash. I hate this photos!

 

I think these are enough for my first post. Surely we are not done with the travel and landscape photography techniques chapter and more are to follow. I wanted to tell you the very basic things that you can do immediately to take better photos in your travels and your everyday situations!

I plan on to keep posting articles about photography. There are much more tips and tricks to share gladly with you.

Let me know your thoughts about that. Also a like and a share on this article would be highly appreciated!

 

 

19 COMMENTS

  1. Nice post! I also have a Nikon D50, it’s an older version with no video. Do you take videos too with your camera during your travels as well as do some video editing? It’s nice when couples document their travels and help each other compose beautiful photographs. 🙂

    • Actually D700 has no video. At this time I do not use video but I am thinking to begin to record next week on our trip to Switzerland!

  2. This is why I only have a XA2 and I shoot in SR mode because as much as I wanna learn all these tips, I have no time to study it for now haha. I do love the hard light tips. I’ve never heard of that one.

  3. Really cool and essential tips, well done! Isn’t it great how with time you feel that you improve and when you compare your very first shots with the latest? BTW which lense do you usually use or you have different ones?

    • Hi Hendrick! Yes it is nice to go back and check your photos now and then… Right now I have a 50mm f/1.8 and a 24-60 f/2.8 One of the best lenses I have ever used is a Minolta 70-210 f/4. My next lens I think will be something like 70-200 with a fixed aperture. Which lens or lenses do you use?

  4. Your tips are helpful. I have a couple questions too. Is there anything type of subject that looks good in hard light? If you must shoot in hard sunlight, how can you improve the results even a bit?

    • Hi there you Ninjas!
      Well if it is imperative to shoot in daylight, you can do these: Try to find a tree, a roof or something like that to get covered 🙂 or you can use the in-camera flash or an external flash to compensate the light. With that, your subject will look better. This is the fill-in flash technique.
      If you ask me, I would tell that I don’t like the hard light in any situation. For some people, it is like a form of art to shoot like that. It is a matter of perspective actually 🙂
      Or you can wait for some clouds in the sky!

  5. Thanks for this article! It’s always nice to repeat some of the things i already know, but also some new things. I’m currently using Canon EOS 600d and i’m in search of a new camera.

  6. Yes, absolutely excellent photo shoo! Tripod is correct for landscape but I didn’t know about frame. I have known from your post which is required. Besides, awesome couple and great inspiration to another. I love it.

    • Thank you Thompson! Yes, framing your subject is absolutely critical! If you do not frame right you may come with a photo that has a person with one leg or a house without a roof 🙂

  7. This is some really helpful info! I just got a new camera for Christmas and still need to take some time and get to know its features. I’ve never really used anything more than a basic auto-mode point and shoot camera. I’ll definitely remember these tips while I’m playing around!

    • Hi Brianna! I hope you will enjoy your camera and your photos! Try to stay away from the auto mode and you will surprise yourself 🙂

  8. Great tips, especially for beginning photographers. I wholeheartedly agree with the part about shooting in auto…it pains me when I see someone with a super nice camera and they only shoot in auto!

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