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Damien Franco PRO 5:48am, 20 July 2008
In one sentence, what's your best tip for new photographers?
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(101 to 200 of 276 replies)
Read,learn,try,apply,trial and error.
AnikoInAsia 9 years ago
The camera is your best friend, get to know it and spend lots of time together.
Learn your camera features in and out. Nikon users
www.bythom.com/
Artermisz 9 years ago
Be Comfortable, Know Your Object of Focus, Expect The Unexpected, Try Again If Must, Smile After Each Shot and Have Fun.
I'm a newbie, but couldn't resist this thread.

Learn the basics, work in manual mode until you have the basics burned into your brain. Then stop thinking about the basics and go out and shoot everything that catches your eye. And remember, we don't photograph objects, we photograph light.
E M Photography 9 years ago
I think one of the major obsticals I had to overcome as a new photographer was critiques! If I could give a newbie any piece of advice it would be to be open to advice and harsh critiques. Don't wear your feelings on your sleeves, when a fellow photographer makes a suggestion or criticism on your work, absorb it, try it, learn from it! They are only trying to make you better through their very own experiences. ;D
starrienight PRO 9 years ago
I sell cameras at a big box store. (Sorry, do have to support my camera) but the best advice I can give is take the time to read your manual,. This applies to people who just want to replace their 35 mm or are on their third or fourth digital camera.
There is a difference between a photographer and some one who just wants some snapshots of their family events though. The photographer actually wants better photos, and is not afraid to get a little creative and experiment.
Everyone at the end of the day will have photos.
So if you're reading this you probably are a photographer who will read, read and read some more and take lots of photos of everything and anything and just have fun. You will get better the more photos you take.
The main thing is that you love what you do.
Oh, and a bit of advice on the technical side, shoot low.
SaltGeorge 9 years ago
Explore aspect ratios and the crop tool.

It doesn't have to stay the shape it came out of the camera.. try 1:1 (square), 16:9 (tv widescreen) and 255:100 (CinemaScope) at the very least.
Ben Hansen Hicks 9 years ago
Have fun!
fancy action [deleted] 9 years ago
Get a 50mm Prime Lens, Shoot in RAW, manual focus, manual mode, shoot in ambient light and ignore the light meter, they are often wrong with lots of highlights or shadows, this will help your understanding of lighting immensely.
enormous cabbage [deleted] 9 years ago
Read a book like "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson, then go out and experiment!
VinceCallaghanPhoto 9 years ago
Shoot shoot shoot then shoot some more, adjust and edit till YOU are happy then finally post and learn from the feedback you receive.
Tristabell 9 years ago
Know your equipment, try different angles, focus and shoot:) Mistakes might turn out to be some of the best shots you will take, happy shooting!!
rawedge studio 9 years ago
just keep snapping........you only get bette by doing.....
reway Posted 9 years ago. Edited by reway (member) 9 years ago
no photo is a bad photo it's a memory of a time & place stopped in time
learn too take photos by taking photos & more photos
breakable tiger [deleted] 9 years ago
Keep your camera on you at all times - the best shots are the ones you never plan.
annoyed bikes [deleted] 9 years ago
^^^^^ Rachell took the words right out of my fingers. Never leave your camera home.
JacobDavis 9 years ago
Think about what you're shooting and go for quality over quantity.
Pablo 57 9 years ago
Lighting is everything so expose for the brightest point in the photo, usually the sky, then manually experiment from there.

"Understanding Exposure" and "Learning to See Creatively" both by Peterson
simple support [deleted] 9 years ago
shoot for the high lights -- develop for the shadows
Know your equipment cold, push the envelope and for goodness sake use a tripod and a release
typicalnaloboy 9 years ago
Shoot, shoot, shoot.....there is nothing a book or forum can tell you that you can't find out yourself by practicing.
tiger_tim_2000 9 years ago
Remember the Fifth Rule!
bvi4092 PRO 9 years ago
You don't have to follow the rules.
admin
Damien Franco PRO 9 years ago
@ tiger_tim_2000 - What's the fifth rule?
Andy Tree 9 years ago
Look at pictures(other people's)
breakable watch [deleted] 9 years ago
Always trust your guts and instincts when it comes to capturing what you think and believe is BEAUTIFUL!
Steve & Kat 9 years ago
As far as f/stop...little numbers little depth of field, big numbers a lot of depth of field. Next lesson shutter speed.
blue tray [deleted] 9 years ago
"Never stop trying to learn more strategies in photography because i learn accepting the truth in failures to make success."-JB
stupendous carriage [deleted] 9 years ago
If your intention is to grab a colorful portrait of a fisherman and go on to the next character, then your images will show only a surface image, a record of the mask the fisherman puts on for every tourist with a point-and-shoot. If your intention is to know more about the life of this fisherman, to perhaps meet his family, learn about his methods . . . your intentions are less photographic and more genuinely human. - Eye Contact and Getting Close


Be Human.

Learn to tell stories with images, go deeper, get closer to your subjects.

Be a purposeful photographer.
xysmas (Aaron) 9 years ago
Google.
quietjim 9 years ago
Stop reading the web; get your camera, go shoot, look at your pictures, do better next time.
BurlapZack PRO 9 years ago
Always have a camera with you. Always.
mark.mortensen 9 years ago
Get out and shoot, shoot shoot and then shoot some more.
Stop The Clocks | sachinkhona PRO Posted 9 years ago. Edited by Stop The Clocks | sachinkhona (member) 9 years ago
Shoot as if you were shooting with a roll of 24 or 36 film

dont shoot for the sake of shooting and pick the best out of a bunch

think, then shoot...

(but sometimes you have to just shoot away)
Raggedy Anne. 9 years ago
always try to do better than your last photo.
j3n53r 9 years ago
get a tripod, set camera to long exposure and play with various light sources. light painting is a lot of fun and creates great effects
Shutter Moments PRO 9 years ago
Learn the basic "rules" of composition and then find your own way of breaking them.
Olde Towne Photos PRO Posted 9 years ago. Edited by Olde Towne Photos (member) 9 years ago
Forget everything you've heard, Google "photography", learn everything about your camera. That should keep you busy for a while. ;-)....If this tip is supposed to be for new photographers, have extra batteries, keep the lens clean, hold the camera steady or use a tripod.
Holger Hill 9 years ago
A motif you don't see is a motif you can't shoot, so: Learn to see! That's worth half of the photo
-= Funk2000 =- 9 years ago
Experience is the best teacher; you can read all you want about photography but you'll never really learn until you put eye-to-viewfinder and finger-to-shutter-release.
efficient spy [deleted] 9 years ago
Do what you want, break the rules and learn to know your camera.
_Dinkel_ PRO 9 years ago
Learn the Zone System, learn the rule of thirds, and set your camera to Manual.
Harold Nora 9 years ago
Explore the world around you, be imaginative and most especially know what your camera can do for you.
Tea & Brie - Meg 9 years ago
Find a picture that you really REALLY like, and decide what it is you like about it. Is it the light? The composition? The colors? The subject? Take the time to research that one specific thing you like about the picture and then try to recreate it in your own work.
rev_adan 9 years ago
EnJoY! =)
mshutchison81 PRO 9 years ago
Print your photos... Big!
SG13 Photography 9 years ago
Have fun - oh and make sure the eyes are in focus in a portrait - especially important with prime lenses - like the 50mm f/1.8 for Canon beginners.
Scare Easy 9 years ago
get closer!
Harry Fichtner PRO 9 years ago
YOU are taking pictures, NOT your Camera!
martoony1 PRO 9 years ago
Think about the shot before you take it.
peejaybee1 9 years ago
Look through the viewfinder, check what you see, then check again, then think about what you see, take lost of pictures, and study them afterwards, and in the meantime, go to an art gallery and see what is going on there
Photography is like every other skill: it takes practice, so shoot, shoot, shoot, shoot, then when you're done look at your images, be a little self-critical and try to find things to improve on that you don't like about your images.
pedsdoc2003 9 years ago
Read the manuals, and practice
kristenbethany 9 years ago
amen to that...read the manuals!!!
cal_gecko PRO 9 years ago
Practice, and try doing new things in a controlled environment where if you ruin the photo, it's no loss. I occasionally go into my back yard and take photos of things like flowers, trees, my shed, the lawnmower, etc.. just to try different techniques, angles, compositions, etc.. so if they don't work out, it's no loss.. I don't practice new techniques for the first time when I'm somewhere like a car show.
photographicleigh PRO 9 years ago
Study other photographers work (both professional and amatuer) and just shoot what "moves" you. It's good to learn the "rule of thirds" for better composition and learn your camera inside and out (I'm still studying my manual).
Set the dial to "M", and leave it there as much as you dare.
Tedi17 PRO 9 years ago
take lots and lots of photos... fill the card!! look at lots of photos...look, look, look.... take take take...lots of photos!!
I'm Wolfies PRO 9 years ago
Do not accept constructive critisim as a failure, embrace it as a tool to learn from and as long as you are satisfied with your own work, that's what matters.
material wax [deleted] Posted 9 years ago. Edited by material wax (member) 9 years ago
Your camera doesn't matter. Buy an autofocus digital, shoot on auto, and take lots of photos. Don't delete anything unless its an obvious dud.
present tree [deleted] 9 years ago
Don't shoot in "Program Auto" mode.
Jason D Reed PRO 9 years ago
Shoot a lot and ignore what people say you should do.
meganhfreeman PRO 9 years ago
Ask lots of questions then ignore them and shoot how you want, and shoot twice as many as you think you want or need.;)
If you're new to photography, don't go and by the latest most expensive thing that money can buy. Get yourself something you're comfortable and confident using. Snap away until your fingers hurt, it's digital so you can delete and start agin. Take pictures of subjects you're interested in and when you think you've reached your peak then maybe that's the time to upgrade. Don't be afraid to ask questions!
think outside of the box and dont be afraid of your own ideas
scobyy 9 years ago
I would have to say do what you love and love what you do and eventually it will all come together!!
Mike Murrow 9 years ago
learn to see.
DavidFingerhut.com 9 years ago
Join a photo club.
rightful mailbox [deleted] 9 years ago
Have your ambition and respect be bigger than the camera.
Always keep your camera with you and never stop shooting.
MuhammadAliPhoto 9 years ago
Spend more time on camera (shooting) and less time online
trudy austin 9 years ago
hi all.i am new to this and i am reading and taking loads of photos main thing i am doing is enjoying myself even when the photos dont turn out for me
quietjim 9 years ago
Shoot more, read less
Tiny Butt Cheeks 9 years ago
Enjoy yourself.
Julio Osorio T. 9 years ago
keep shooting!
LanieB1966 9 years ago
Remember that art is all about persepctive, each person is unique and so is their opinion....so shoot what you like and enjoy every moment of it.
Michal Rosa 9 years ago
Hmmm.. Watch, learn, read - in that order. Unless you are a natural - you need to learn how to watch, if you don't know how to see you need to learn it so read how the masters did it. Not that I know how to do it, just a suggestion.

Step 2? Get a prime lens.
paul indigo PRO 9 years ago
Avoid the mistakes I describe here.
flagrant power [deleted] 9 years ago
Shoot what you love, and everything in manual mode.
danilew 9 years ago
(1) get to know your camera, (2) read about ISO, aperture and shutter speed and how they interact with each other, (3) take pictures, (4) review pictures to see if they came out how you visualized, then (5) take more pictures.
e.celesti 9 years ago
Don't bother if other people take better pictures than you, but try to learn from them and shoot a lot of pictures to improve. Good results take time and patience.
frogdog* 9 years ago
Shoot in RAW format
hallowed sleep [deleted] 9 years ago
Don't shoot for Flickr, shoot for you.
Tommy Fjordbøge 9 years ago
Have patience :)
ambitious thrill [deleted] 9 years ago
It takes thirty photos to produce one good photo - also, have a keen eye for angles; observe the world around you through nature's cameras - the eyes - only then can you attempt to preserve the moment.
JaPar PRO 9 years ago
Get out of it while you still can! Run...

No seriously, I think the best thing you can do is join a photoclub (if you have the time)
READ your manual, sleep with your camera, shoot in RAW, always shoot and take your camera with you, and get the best damn glass you can afford!
Take as many pictures as possible and closely look at your photos to see what works and what you've missed.
Titimo 9 years ago
Take thousands of shots to get to know your camera and keep trying, never give up. Make sure there's something interesting on your shots so they don't turn out plain boring (that's my biggest mistake)
ryantron. PRO 9 years ago
Slow down.. Think about what you are doing.
Pyrografika 9 years ago
Don't be afraid to take "bad" shots. You'll learn a lot about your camera & photography by trying all sorts of shots and finding what you like among the throwaways.
Never take laxatives and sleeping pills at the same time. That's not just good advice for photographers, that's good advice for everyone.
jeffegg2 PRO 9 years ago
Don't take tips from internet roomies...... 95% of it is crap....
Gekko82 9 years ago
Not always, but often: "less is more"
Aaron Villescas™ Posted 9 years ago. Edited by Aaron Villescas™ (member) 9 years ago
No matter how 'new' you are to the sport of photography... never be afraid of sharing what you DO know with other photographers. It's never too soon to get into that habit of sharing knowledge with others... oh and be sure calibrate the color on your monitors
RuanNiemann 9 years ago
blink a lot, keeps your eyes in good shape.
DCI Photography 9 years ago
Learn the basics and history of film photography, from a book, the web, community college, it is the foundation of all digital photography technology
little~ny PRO 9 years ago
never leave the house without your camera...you'll aways 'miss THE shot'
carrie120505 9 years ago
Take MORE pictures and then when you think you've taken enough, take more.
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