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Photography tips / thoughts
Over the years, I’ve compiled a few tips or wisdom I discovered that help me in my photography.
Without digressing further, herewith are my top ‘personal’ photography tips. I write it down here to remind myself whenever I need them. This is a growing list, and I will update this page whenever I have new additional tips.
- It’s never about the gear. Photography is all about knowing where to point your camera to. But specific equipment is required to take a particular type of shot (i,e: macro, telephoto). Once you have the required gear, it’s your creativity that matters, not the gear anymore.
- Have someone to look up to, your favourite photographers of the past or current. Look at the photographs they took and try to understand the how and the why.
- Believe that there’s always someone out there that is better than you, and you could learn a thing or two from them. Dial down the ego.
- Slanted horizon, yes! Weird placement of subject, yes! Learn the rules, and then break them.
- For portraits, try to photograph the people instead of a concept or an idea. I treat everything as a portrait, from trees, statues in a museum to a cup of coffee.
- Editing or post-processing is crucial. It can make or break your photo.
- Be unique. Be you. The worst thing I have seen online is people buying a preset and coalesced themselves with thousands of other photographers who buy that same preset. If poisoned-brown looking grass or trees and jaundice-coloured skin remind you of some weddings photography, you know what I’m talking about.
- Less is more. Use one or two lenses instead of 4 or 5. Strip down to essential and force yourself to work with less. Never let the gears impede your creativity.
- Beware of false acknowledgement, i.e., the number of pretentious likes or followers you have on Social Media could hinder your progress. Quality over quantity.
- Practice. The art of seeing doesn’t come easy. Talent helps, but it means nothing without practice.
- When you look at the viewfinder or your camera screen, the framing you have is like a blank canvas. And everyone will paint the canvas differently.
- Certifications certainly won’t help you take great photos. Great art and artistic vision are coming from within yourself.
- Create a photograph that is visually pleasing and at the same time meaningful.
- Try not to take photographs just for the sake of capturing a moment, or you’ll end up with paparazzi-style snapshot. Good photographs were always the ones taken with artistic consideration before pressing the shutter button.
- Just because I buy a guitar doesn’t mean I can play the guitar straight away and call myself a guitarist. The same can be said when one buys a camera and labelling themselves as a photographer. It is not that easy.
- Trying to win a photography competition is like trying to win a lottery. If you like your works, you are already winning!
- Be humble, and have fun (especially if you’re not putting food on the table with your photography). Less pressure means more freedom in creativity!