Feb 25, 2013

20 Essential Photography Tips (Part II)

This photo blog post (Part II) provides the ambitious photographer with the second 10 photo tips and know how needed for immediate and better photography results. Implement one tip at a time or all at once, embrace the learned to move your photography art instantly forward and into the right direction. 

Photo Tip #11 of 20: Use patterns, particularly repeating patterns to make pictures more interesting and pleasing. Patterns are repeating shapes, objects or colors either ordered in precise formations or just random designs scattered across a scene. Patterns in a photography image create a very pleasing feel to the eye and add a new dimension to our photographs.

Photo Tip #12 of 20: Take a moment right before releasing the shutter and snapping a photo. Look up, look down, look all around to make sure there is nothing distracting in the composition. 

Photo Tip #13 of 20: Use negative space wisely by making sure your photography subject is the primary visual element unless there is a specific reason you want to minimize it. The absence of picture content does not automatically mean the absence of interest. In fact, negative space often adds interest as it often conveys a stronger emphasis on the photographic subject. Negative space can have intriguing effects on the viewer, balance the image and evoke emotions effectively.

Photo Tip #14 of 20: Don't let the horizon fall dead center in the picture. It most likely always creates a boring image (exceptions are beautiful landscape reflections) Instead place the horizon low to enhance the feel of spatial depth of the open landscape or to emphasize a dramatic cloud formation. For images with stronger foregrounds and weaker cloud or sky formations a horizon in the upper third of the image is more preferred.

Photo Tip #15 of 20: Make sure there is separation between multiple subjects to avoid unattractive merges.

Photo Tip #16 of 20: Pay attention to the point of view. Shooting up on photo objects make them more powerful. Shooting down upon them diminish them or make them look less imposing.

Photo Tip #17 of 20: Play with the camera shutter speed. A slow shutter speed combined with a tripod will make for beautiful silky water effects. A fast shutter speed will enable you to hand hold the camera and capture fast moving objects like flying birds or the splash of crushing waves and surfs. Keep in mind that capturing the moment in fast paced action photography takes a little bit of practice, so hang in there. 

Photo Tip #18 of 20: Plan ahead. Keep a close eye on the weather by watching the forecast the night before or simply look outside to check whether or not you are going to want to have the sky in your picture. Overcast sky balances colors beautifully but usually makes for boring, washed-out skies; hence keep the sky out of the picture as much as possible on overcast days. On beautiful days with lots of blue sky and interesting cloud formations, go ahead and make the most out of it. A polarizing filter is sunglasses for your camera and will minimize unwanted glare on shiny or wet surfaces and boost color saturation and contrast.

Photo Tip #19 of 20: Exposure is one of the most important camera and lens functions that a photographer needs to understand and master when pursuing photography. A correct exposed photograph conveys an image of clarity that retains details and colors in all areas of interest including light or dark areas. Correct exposure is always subjective and while I prefer a slightly underexposed image that boosts colors and saturation, others may not. Correct exposure is a fine combination of ISO, shutter speed, aperture and lens settings. Understanding how these 4 elements come together is crucial for exceptional photography. 

Photo Tip #20 of 20: A solid tripod is one of the most important investments for a photographer. High quality nature photography is rarely accomplished when hand holding our camera. A tripod is essential for low light photography during the morning, evening and twilight, handy for shooting wildlife and macro photographs or when we experimenting with impressionistic or abstract photography. The tripod not only steadies our shooting equipment for maximum image quality, it also helps us to discover the world of photography. We are more likely to slow down, step back, think and compose a more meaningful photograph. We most likely ask ourselves: Is the horizon straight, is there sufficient depth of field or shall I open up the aperture setting to minimize depth of field, are there any distracting elements in the foreground or background of my composition, do I even have a composition?

More Reading and Photo Tips you may enjoy: 

Love Jigsaw Puzzles and flowers? 

Favorite Flower and Gardening Quotes 

Painting with Light like Georgia O'Keeffe 

15 Flower Photo Tips and Photography Inspiration


  1. Thank you for such wonderful and easy to follow tips! I truly appreciate you sharing your knowledge!

  2. Thank you so very much for commenting on these 20 photo tips Michelle! glad to see that you enjoy reading them and find them helpful and useful. These photography tips are easy to implement, either one by one or all at ones ... I think those are low hanging fruits that will improve our photography instantly ... let me know how they worked out for you. My best, Juergen