In which I learn how to take a decent photo

This week, we all thought a lot about photography. I read some really incredible articles this week (as a history person, this one was really fun and enlightening for me), and I got some really good tips.

The tips given in this article were particularly helpful. To take the following photo, I mostly tried to:

  • Get Pickier: Instead of using your camera like a rapid-fire machine gun, spend more time pre-composing in your mind. As you get more practice, you can be more selective, and more deliberate.
  • Pay Attention to the Moment: Sometimes it means slowing down, but also being more aware of the action in a scene, trying to anticipate the moment of something interesting before it happens e.g. watching a family at the table preparing for when baby might spill the glass of milk? at sporting events trying to be ready for the kick that scores the goal?
  • Look to the light. Probably the most key lesson- be aware of the light that works and what does not. Knowing about shadows, directions, aiming for directions where light is strong (or not). Good light makes every photo. Learn how to sense when light is good (and when not, and you can skip lousy shots).
  • Use the Best Lens If your camera uses different lenses, understand better what a wide-angle does versus a telephoto not only in terms of what it can fit in a photo but what effect it has on one photo (squashing or expanding space). If your lens is fixed, understand what its limits are (how close you can get, what happens at severe angles).

I was walking on campus after the rain this weekend, and I took this photo. I tried to put an emphasis on the lights, which I thought were really cool. I took my time (though my hands are always a bit shaky so it doesn’t really show) and I used the wide angle lens on my phone to get a better view. Overall, I’m happy with how it turned out.

I suggest you check out those links and see how you can improve your pictures! Truly, I still have a ways to go, but I expect the journey to be a fun one!

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