:: to improve your photography, first improve composition ::

Posted on June 19, 2012

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How do you improve your photography? Some people says just go out there and shoot. But perhaps more importantly before you do go out, take time to look at others’ photos. I am not one who is good at the technical aspect of photography. In fact I am very bad at it. Sure I know a little about exposure. The basics, aperture, shutter speed and iso but other than that, I am quite ignorant especially on the usage of flashes, I seldom uses flash, not to mention multiple flashes. I know light is the fundamental of photography, you need to know a little about light, especially when taking portraits. There are lots of books on lights and usage of flashes too. Light is good but to me, composition is better. The best way to improve composition is to look at photos taken by other photographers. The “greats” like Henri Cartier-Bresson, Annie Leibovitz (love her portraits) or more comtemporary photographers like Manuel Rivera-Ortiz, Bruce Gilden etc The more I look at theirs, the more I am inspired, the more I want to shoot. Looking at how they compose their pictures and try to do it on my own. That’s how I learnt I guess.

How do you get into the right moment? Saw a documentary in youtube on Henri Cartier-Bresson, he mentioned briefly, its all about luck. Its always luck and I agreed with him.

At the very least, you need to have your camera with you.

But does the type of camera matters? To me, a camera is a tool. Its the paintbrush for a painting. A paintbrush has different grades, shapes, sizes but at the end of day, its the painting that matters. Sure, you need a camera, perhaps one you are very comfortable with. I was previously a Nikon DSLR user but now I am using Fuji X-Pro1. All the photos you seen here are taken by X-Pro1. But if you have excellent eye for photography who is to say iphone or any point & shoot (P&S) can’t do the job? These days the phone camera has such good resolution that I wouldn’t even bother to buy a P&S. A camera is a tool, a good camera will produce a better quality photo (colors, contrast etc) but composition is entirely on the person behind the viewfinder.

To improve your photography, first improve the composition. With some luck, you will have many wonderful photos to boast about.

 

 

 

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