Take Your Best Shot

I am by far not a professional photographer, but I definitely LOVE to take pictures.  Lately I have not been able to use my camera nearly as much as I would like.  Usually this is because by the time I get all seven of us out the door with everything we could possibly need for the day I usually have forgotten to grab my camera bag.  Or, on the days I do remember my camera I realize it is absolutely impossible to take a decent picture with a baby wrapped around me – worst shutter shake ever.

But I do always have my phone.  So whether you have remembered your camera, or only have your phone camera, try some of these tips this summer to take your best shot.

(I have an iPhone and really don’t know much about the camera functions on other phones, but generally these tips should be helpful to anyone.)

  • Hold you camera with two hands.  This will give you the sharpest picture possible.
  • When you press the button on your phone to take the picture, remove your finger quickly.  The phone does not actually shoot until the button is depressed.  This will help you get a sharper picture and help eliminate those pictures of your child running half out of the screen.
  • Try using your camera without the zoom.  When you zoom in your camera is more likely to be sensitive to movement, reducing the sharpness of your picture.
  • Use light to your advantage.  With a cell phone camera you do not have many options to correct poor light.  So look for the good light.  Avoid direct, harsh, mid-day light which creates dark shadows and forces the subject to squint.  Use morning, evening, overcast, foggy and even pre-storm light to your advantage.  Or look for filtered light underneath a tree or other structure.

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(Taken mid-day with filtered light under Redwood trees)

  • Consider a different perspective, perhaps try looking up to your subject.

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(Underneath the Bridge)

and most importantly…

  • Get close.  Especially when shooting your kids, kneel down, get on their level and fill the shot with their picture eliminating all of the extras around them.  This is one of my pet peeves.  It makes me nuts to look at a picture of the top of the child’s head because the picture was taken by an adult significantly taller.  This goes for animals too.  Get down to their level.  You will love the results.

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(Kids are little, you’ve got to kneel, sit and sometimes lie down to get the best shot.)

There are absolutely more ideas, but this should give you a good start to better pictures