By Scott Kelby
HERE ARE FIVE TIPS I wish somebody had told me when I ;rst
started in photography (well, except for the ;rst three, because that
technology hadn’t been invented yet).
Shoot wide for more impact (below)
Most likely, the images you take today with your digital camera
or cellphone are headed to the Web (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, etc.).
And when you post your images online, you want them to have the
most impact possible, right? ;e secret is to shoot wide.
;at’s right: Keep your camera horizontal—don’t turn it vertically
and shoot tall, because those tall shots will seem puny on a Web page
(they’ll look more like large thumbnails) due to the way most Web
pages are designed. Your tall image gets only around 40 percent of the
space a wide image would have, which means your tall image has only
40 percent of the impact.
Top: A photo with a vertical orientation lacks impact on social
Bottom: A wide photo really stands out in these situations.
Left: The lighting is more flattering in the shade, but with auto
white balance the scene starts to look very bluish.
Right: Simply change the white-balance setting to “shade” on
your camera, and now you get perfect color.
Five tips for new photographers
For great color, look up (above)
If you’re tired of having some images look way too blue, yellow or
green, you’re one head movement and one button away from having
perfect color every time. ;e color of photos is controlled by the
camera’s white-balance control, and most people use the camera’s auto
white-balance feature. ;e auto feature usually does a great job of
giving great color (especially when shooting outdoors), but as soon
as you walk into the shade, everybody in the photo gets a blue tint.
Or you enter a restaurant, and now everybody looks really yellow.
;e ;x is easy. Just change the white-balance setting on your
camera to match the lighting you’re shooting, using this simple two-step process: ( 1) Look up. If you see trees above your head, you’re in
the shade. ( 2) Change your camera’s white balance to “shade” and
now you have perfect color. If you look up and see clouds, change the
white balance to “cloudy.” If you’re in an o;ce, and you look up and
see ;uorescent lights, change the white balance to “;uorescent.”
It’s that easy. Don’t forget to switch back to auto white balance,
because it really does do a great job of usually providing accurate color.
Hold the camera really still (far right)
I get more questions about blurry photos than anything else. ;e
main culprit is that the camera is not being held really still. If you’re
outside shooting in bright sunlight, you really don’t have to worry
about this—there’s so much light that your camera will literally freeze
just about anything, even if it’s moving.
But as soon as you walk into the shade, or into a restaurant, there’s
not as much light. Now your camera needs to keep its shutter open
longer, and any movement during that time means blurry photos.
Here are three tricks to keep the camera still in lower lighting.
• Tuck your arms and elbows in close to your body. ;is helps
stabilize the camera.