These important tips for taking digital photography will put the control of image making totally in your hands. Whether you already own a digital camera or are getting ready buy one, these tips will help you understand the digital process a little better.
When discussing tips for taking digital photography, the most important thing to talk about is the type of digital camera you are using. Just as with the traditional film camera, there are many types of digital cameras, ranging from point and shoot cameras to digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) cameras. The two most popular brands of cameras are Canon and Nikon. But there are many others in-between. It does take some time to research. But if this is your first purchase of a digital camera, you want to make sure that you know something about the amount megapixels the camera has. The width and height of a photo are measured in tiny dots called “pixels.” Choosing a camera with more megapixels is best, because it will allow for larger photos.
#1–Play with your camera!
The one thing that most people don’t do when learning to use a digital camera is read the manual and play with all of the options. This is the place where you will find many tips for taking digital photography using your specific camera. Believe me, this will save lots of time when you are trying to get a shot and it seems like your camera is not cooperating. Take some time to explore the knobs and switches that are located in various places on the camera. If you are really serious about photography, you will need to learn about controls and settings other than the automatic ones. Take some time to locate things such as the flash control, the review button, the delete button, and the scene mode dial.
If you are using a DSLR, you may have many other controls, such as manual (M), aperture (A) and shutter speed (S). These controls may be listed a little differently depending on the manufacture, so read the manual if you are not sure. If for some reason you have misplaced the manual or lost it, just do a Google search for the “camera type + manual.” Most of them are now online.
#2–Determining Image Quality
Pay close attention to this tip for taking digital photography as it can help to make or break the look of your image. Using the maximum megapixel that your camera offers will produce the larges photo for printing. But keep in mind that the higher the image resolution the more space the image will take up on the memory card. It is always best to have an extra memory card. with you just in case you run out of space quickly. JPEG is the standard file format for shooting photos. This type of file allows you to shoot quickly to catch the action. It does not take up a lot of space on your memory card, as compared to a RAW file. But the down side is that you are not able to do very much editing on the JPEG file once you download your images to your computer. The image quality of a JPEG file compared to a RAW file, sometimes referred to as a digital negative, is lacking.
RAW files take up more room on your memory card, but you are able to do lots of editing on the file once you download it to your computer. RAW files are like having a film negative. You will always be able to make a picture without affecting the integrity of the negative. In comparison to a JPEG file, of which image quality it negatively affected each time you work with it.
RAW+JPEG is an option that many cameras now have. This option allows you to produce both files at once. But, you will get even fewer images on your memory card when using this option.
#3–Some Basic Guidelines to Follow
The first thing to think about when take a photography using your digital camera is exposure. Photography is all about light, and the quantity and quality of light entering the camera will determine the kind of exposure you end up with.
The longer the light is allowed to hit the digital sensor the more exposure you are giving the image. Too much exposure and you have an image that is overexposed.
Underexposure occurs when not enough light is allowed to hit the digital sensor. With the right balance of aperture and shutter speed together, you will be able to distinguish the difference between the two forms.
#4–Focus, Using Auto Versus Manual Settings
Your camera, whether it is a digital point and shoot camera or a digital single-lens reflex camera, has many options for focusing. There are focus modes for landscapes, portrait, sports and night scenes, among others. When the camera is set to auto mode, it is programed to average out the lighting at the scene and produce acceptable photos that are not to light and not to dark. But, these images won’t be perfect.
If you turn off the auto settings and use the Manual (M) setting, you will have more control over how the scene is depicted. It is a good idea to practice with your camera in Manual mode. This mode will give you some knowledge of the aperture and shutter speed settings, and how they function together to control the amount of light that hits the digital sensor.
Your camera may have a couple of flash options. Flash is an auto setting.
The AUTO option lets the camera determine how much light is available and flashes if more light is needed.
The ON option means the camera will flash every time a photo is taken.
The OFF options means the camera will not flash at all. In some cases the flash is not going to make a difference anyway, such as when taking distant images such as landscapes. Check your manual. In most cases on camera flash has a range of around 12 feet.
#5–Working With Manual Controls
Using your Manual (M) functions will give you more control over your final image and you will learn to take better pictures. Just remember, practice makes perfect.
You will have to set the aperture or shutter speed depending on the scene, to let in the correct amount of light. The aperture, f-stop, will determine the ‘amount’ of light allowed to hit the sensor and the shutter speed will determine ‘how long’ the light will hit the sensor. These two controls are very important when shooting manually and work together to create the proper exposure.
Although the last 5 tips for taking digital photography are important to grasp, this tip about color modes, is the last one that photographers seem to get a good understanding of.
Most digital cameras have color options to choose from. A couple of common options are sepia color, which makes the image look vintage, and the monochrome mode which allows you to shoot in black and white.
The White Balance (WB) function is one of the most important and most overlooked function on a digital camera. It allows you to adjust shots that are taken under fluorescent (bluish) lighting and incandescent (yellowish) lighting. There may be other functions that you camera may have as far as white balance, such as Shade, Cloudy, and Sunny, etc. Using these functions help you to bring the colors of the scene closer to a true white.
#7–Editing your photos
Now that you have those beautiful images, it is time to transfer them to your computer for editing. Digital cameras come with some sort of photo editing software.
Once you download your photos to your computer, make sure you have some way of organizing them. With the right editing software you can ad comments, ratings, and tags that will allow you to categorize your pictures. For example, you can separate your images by holidays, birthdays, people etc. Don’t forget to use your color photo printer to make copies of your best images. You can also email the images or put them on your website. Follow these tips for taking digital photography and you will be shooting like a pro!