It can sometimes be hard getting into photography. It’s a quite a dense field, and the temptation is to either jump straight in or spend hours working on theory before you get started. In reality, a mix of both is needed for optimal results. However, there are some pieces of advice that can be immensely helpful when you’re just starting out. We take a look at three essential photography tips for newcomers that we wish we’d known when we first got started. Hopefully, they’ll help you start taking some great shots.
1. Choose the Right Lens
Many newcomers assume that the most important part of their photography kit will be the camera. This is partially true, but the lens or lenses you choose to go with that camera are equally valuable. The lens you buy will determine which kind of shots you’re going to be most suited to taking. A standard kit 18-55mm kit lens will give you a good range, without being especially great at specifics. On the other hand, a fixed 50mm, f/1.8 lens is perfect for portraits with lots of background blur (bokeh). If you’re more into landscapes, you’ll want to choose a wide angle lens such as a 24mm-105mm f/4. Generally speaking, the more you spend, the better the results you’ll achieve.
2. Minimum Shutter Speed Lock
Second in our list of photography tips for newcomers is to use the shutter speed lock function. You may find at first that you’re getting a lot of really blurry shots. They can ruin a perfectly framed moment, and it’s pretty much impossible to correct them in post. Minimum shutter speed lock prevents your camera from selecting a shutter speed below a certain threshold. This means that you can shoot hand-held without worrying about your shots being blurry. Of course, you’ll have to compensate for light if you do this, by balancing aperture and ISO. However, as a general rule, you can go as slow as 1/50 second for still portraits, 1/125 second for slight movement, and 1/250 second for a moving subject.
3. Shoot in RAW
We alluded to this in the above tip, but you’re likely going to have to use post-production software to get your photos looking as good as they possibly can. Many people are familiar with simple filters, but proper software such as Adobe Lightroom will maximise the quality of your shots. By shooting in RAW format rather than JPEG, the camera captures more information that you can edit. This added information allows you greater creative freedom to create beautiful and polished images. However, bear in mind that you don’t want to go overboard with your edits to make your pictures look unnatural.
Photography Tips for Newcomers Final Thoughts
These three simple tips can go a long way to getting you started on the right track. It often takes either a lot of reading or trial and error for photographers to learn these essentials. You can save yourself a lot of time by implementing them as you start. Good luck and happy shooting.