Amateur Photography is a hobby to many, it’s truly an art rightly blended with science. An ideal photographer besides having the right taste to take a snap also understands when to take it and how to take it. So for any aspiring photographers it’s very important to have a grasp on the intricacies of the science behind ‘image capturing’.
Photographers are considered ‘Amateur’ or ‘Professional’ depending on their motives – amateurs pursue photography as a hobby and mostly without any monetary objectives; whereas professional photographers pursue photography as their livelihood. Irrespective of what type a photographer is, the qualities mentioned in the introductory lines are a must, to take meaningful photographs. From simple boxes and photographic plates, photography evolved leaps and bounds and presently it’s nowhere in comparison to its beginning days. Now cameras have gone digital and developing a film is almost “Obsolete”. Nonetheless, true photography and its mastery still needs a command over light, exposure and shutter speeds at the least. These terms shouldn’t bewilder you or discourage you to pursue photography as an amateur photographer, as they will unfold themselves to you the more passionately you engage in learning and mastering the art of photography.
So let’s get into the details of what you need to learn as an amateur photographer and few tips and tricks you can do,
Light – after all ‘photo’ in photography means light, so I assume the importance of light need not be emphasized when it comes to photography. Light puts a lot of meaning into your photo and it’s very important for you to conceive apt lighting for your shot, so that it conveys some meaning – and doesn’t just remain a photograph!
Exposure – is the amount of light you let fall onto the film or sensor through the aperture. It’s important to understand this aspect so that you don’t end-up taking a dark or a very bright photo. Through practice you should understand how to have control over exposure of light and shutter speeds and with this you are sure to take some amazing pictures. Generally speaking greater the shutter speed the better you grab very fast action and vice versa. Assume you are taking a snap of your favorite racer’s race car, the shutter speeds then should be very high to capture the racing car in action without blur. Contradictorily, some stunning photographs can also be taken by increasing exposure time and lowering shutter speeds, by lowering the shutter speed you will basically be increasing your exposure times to the tune of minutes at times.
Motion capturing at high shutter speeds – as mentioned above, shutter speeds can be managed to capture images at low shutter speeds and high exposure times or at high shutter speeds and low exposure times. At high shutter speeds, you typically catch a very fast action at its best, and images just look stunning.
White Balance – this is yet another important aspect for taking good photographs. The normal light is basically white in color, but incandescent light and fluorescent light have different colors. So eventually if you take a photograph in any other light conditions other than natural white light, the photographs would not look natural – in short, the light has to be white balanced for the image to look natural. Fortunately for us, digital cameras have algorithms built into its processors to compensate for white balance thereby helping us take photographs which look natural for any given light conditions. But, still it would be wise to toggle with different white balance settings give in your camera to ensure that the photograph turns out to be very natural. Generally, digital cameras are provided with ‘daylight’, ‘cloudy’, ‘incandescent’ or ‘fluorescent’ settings; just try out all the settings with some sample shots and choose the best setting for any given light-condition. This ensures that the photograph doesn’t look out of its lighting context.
Using colored filters in black and white photography – black and whitephotography is not obsolete and is still in vogue; in fact it’s favored more by some photographers – amateurs and professionals alike. Some absolutely stunning photographs can be taken in black and white, but there arises a problem, in normal black and white photos the various shades of black and white tend to blend into each other, and at times ending in unappealing results. To compensate for this defect in black and white photography color filters are used and each color filter when used in black and white photography gives different effects. Many color filters like red, orange and yellow filters are used for the purpose.Using an orange filter while taking portrait photography in black and white – helps in reducing the appearance of skin folds and blemishes, eventually making the portraitmore beautiful.
These are the very basic aspects of photography an amateur needs to know and tweaking with these; you can perform various tips and tricks and capture some absolutely stunning photographs – keep clicking!