Sunday, 8 June 2014

Practice Makes Perfect…and Gets Better Photos

Practice Makes Perfect…and Gets Better Photos

Link to PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Practice Makes Perfect…and Gets Better Photos

Posted: 07 Jun 2014 09:56 PM PDT

The effort you put into your photography directly affects the quality of your photos. It is a rule of life. Sometimes people are lucky, but most of the time, the result of little effort is little reward. Gary Player, a world class golfer, always said that the harder he practiced the luckier he got.

sunset photography

“Family Golf – Evening View of Golf Ground” captured by Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Why is practicing photography so important?

Our brains are amazing, and when we repeat something, it creates pathways to the brain. We develop something called muscle memory. This is really important in sports and physical activity and, to a degree, it affects your skill acquisition with photography. You don’t have to think as much; everything comes more naturally.

As you learn digital photography and acquire skills and techniques, they need to be regularly practiced in order for them to become entrenched in your mind. They should become second nature to you. A pianist has to practice her scales, even though they are tedious and monotonous. There is a good reason for this. When it becomes second nature, it allows your brain to concentrate on the intricacies of the performance. The same goes for photography. The creative photographer doesn’t concentrate on getting the techniques right but rather on the creative side of image taking.

3 Exercises to Make Practicing More Pleasant

1. Go on a photo walk

Get out of your home and into the outdoors. You’ll have more subjects and there is more variety to the images you can create. There is just something about the outdoors that makes you feel good. Set yourself a goal as to what you want to achieve and then work toward it. You’ll get good exercise and great images.

landscape photography

“Mount Hood” captured by Brian Clark (Click image to see more from Clark.)

2. Shoot one subject in 50 different ways

This may seem difficult, but once you start it gets easier. Find something that you like or that appeals to you, then attempt to take fifty photos of it from different angles and in different ways. This really pushes you to the limits but what it gets you thinking outside the box and trying news things. I can promise you that you will come up with some great images.

3. Take the alphabet challenge

You can do this anywhere–indoors or outdoors. What you must do with this little challenge is take the alphabet or a series of letters in the alphabet and shoot objects that either begin with the letter or look like the letter. This task gets you thinking and, of course, practicing your photography.

photography practice

“Letter Collage” captured by Bob West

The object of these little exercises is to give you ideas so that you’ll take more photos. One of the biggest hindrances for new photographers is deciding what to shoot. If you are not taking photos, you aren’t practicing. And practice makes perfect.

I teach photography for a living and my mantra is “practice, practice, practice and when you have finished practicing, practice more.” It’s the concert pianist, the top golfer, and the talented artist who practice the most that become the most proficient at what they are doing. Happy shooting!

About the Author:
Wayne Turner has been teaching photography for 25 years and has written three books on photography. He has produced 21 Steps to Perfect Photos; a program of learner-based training using outcomes based education.

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Tips for Starting Out in Commercial Fashion Photography (Video)

Posted: 07 Jun 2014 05:16 PM PDT

Commercial and fashion photographs are some of the most commonly viewed images in today's society. Making it as a commercial photographer is incredibly difficult, especially with competition from other photographers—not to mention the cost of gear and a crew. Tim Engle has been shooting for about 28 years since he first picked up a camera in middle school. Suffering from severe dyslexia, photography allowed him to be creative in ways he otherwise couldn't be and gave him a social outlet, as well. Below is a complete interview with Engle about his work:

Equipment Needed for Commercial Fashion Photography

The first thing that Engle emphasizes is that equipment is not as important as it seems. If the subject is right, it does not matter whether you are shooting with Nikon, Canon, or an iPhone. When he is asked what equipment to buy, he advises to get what your friends have. That way, you can share lenses and gadgets with each other. He also recommends you master your camera and lens. The more hours you spend behind the lens, the more your images will improve.


Some of the gear in his camera bag includes a Nikon D4, a 24mm-70mm lens, various prime lenses, a Nikon SB Speedlight, and a trigger system. However, Engle has always been creative with the resources he uses. Especially at the beginning of his career, he did not have access to the most advanced gear.

How to Be Successful in Commercial Photography

Gear aside, Engle shared a few valuable tips on how to be successful as a commercial photographer. Here are just a few:

  • Try to be nice and helpful. It will pay off. The more relationships you develop, the more likely a job will come your way.
  • Remember the balance between commerce and art. If you want photography to be your job, you may sometimes have to sacrifice art for money.
  • Find inspiration. Engle often made binders of magazine pictures that he liked and dissected the lighting and composition so that he could incorporate the same elements in his shots.
  • Make your images as close to perfect from the start. Avoid the photographer's dirty catchphrase, "I'll fix it in Photoshop."
  • Show what you can do before you are hired. Practice at the level at which you wish to work. Clients are often inspired by your work before coming to your for a job. You need to show them your best.
  • Don't quit your day job to pursue photography. Become involved in the area that you are interested, and try to transition over. The photography industry can be brutal, and it's not worth losing a job.
  • Direct your models. Do not expect your models to know what you want just because they are models. Don’t be afraid to be specific in your directions.

fashion portrait black and white photography

"There was a guy I was working with a couple of weeks ago and he was standing next to me shooting some stuff and he said, 'How come your picture always comes out better than mine?' And I said, 'Because I screwed it up probably fifty more times than you did.' And I think that's really the key to trying to get better. There is no substitute to pushing that button and failing and screwing that shot up so you know what not to do next time."

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

Profitable Advice From a Professional Wedding and Portrait Photographer (Video)

Posted: 07 Jun 2014 10:33 AM PDT

Graham Monro loves his job. He loves photographing people and capturing their personality while building relationships with his clients. As a professional wedding and portrait photographer, Graham Monro, has years of experience under his belt and his talent and passion for the job shows vividly in his work. In the short clip, Monro shares some of the insight he has gained over the years working with families and newlyweds in an effort to impart his wisdom on aspiring portrait photographers:

The clip comes off as a Canon advertisement of sorts; Monro shoots on a Canon 5D Mark III. But, looking past all the pretty cameras (or in my case, gawking at all the gear I wish I owned), Monro offers a lot of tips for those wishing to make a successful business out wedding and portrait photography.

How to Capture Personality in Portraits

  • Personalize your shoots. Monro explains that when shooting families, he is looking to capture their specific dynamics. Every shoot should be different and based upon the people you’re photographing.
  • Capture emotion. Show a family’s love for one another by encouraging them to interact.
  • Make it fun. To do that, Monro suggests getting to know the clients and building an upbeat rapport with them so they can more easily put their guards down when in front of the camera.

family portraits

How to Build a Strong Photography Business

As far as building a strong business, Monro says the best way to do this is to do a really good job. Give clients a great experience, deliver a superior product, and people will refer you. Word of mouth referrals are one of the best ways to acquire new clients and build a solid foundation for your photography business.

wedding photography

“I think something that people are getting wrong now in this digital age is they are not printing their work and they’re not displaying it and that’s when you can relive those moments. For me, the life of a photograph begins and ends with a print. You can’t get a higher accolade than somebody to hang your photograph in their house for the rest of their lives.”

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Article from: PictureCorrect Photography Tips

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