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Friday, October 16, 2015

[QUORA]Ditch photo editors with the following tips on taking a good picture

  1. Before pushing that button, freeze into position, and take your eyes for a walk around the margins of the image in the viewfinder. That will help you re-calibrate in case someone's arm was out of the picture, or the head of that cool statue. We tend to focus on the center of our subject, forgetting about the rest of the image.
  2. Inhale before pushing the button, and push it while starting to exhale normally. If you push it while inhaling or while forcefully holding your breath, your arms are likely to shake. You can actually hold your breath, but don't take the photo when you're close to turning blue. Such timings can affect the clarity of the photo when there's less light, or the framing at any time.  
  3. Avoid having the source of light in front of you. It should be lighting the subject, not you. Ideally, it should fall on your subject from somewhere in front of them, at an angle (30º-45º). 
  4. Try taking the photos of people in places with diffuse light. A very strong sun will create strong shadows which are usually not helpful for a portrait (unless your experience allows you to play with them). Sunny is good for landscapes, cloudy is good for portraits (although neither of them exclusively).
  5. Check out the background as well, when looking through the viewfinder. Your brain has most likely learned to not notice that piece of trash on the sidewalk, but the camera most definitely will.
  6. Pay attention to the posture of the person you're photographing, and check whether there aren't any issues with the clothing / hair / makeup.
  7. Avoid having your subject in the middle or at any margin. Use any remaining areas of the image to position your subject, and bam!, you're following the famous rule of thirds.
  8. Here's a fun trick for photographing someone. Ask them to remember what they had for dinner two days ago, and then photograph them as they struggle to remember. Or tell them to imagine a naked turtle.
  9. There's more than one angle from which you can photograph a subject. More to the left, more to the right, higher, lower, closer, farther, tilted, upside down... try them and see which works best for your subject.

This answer was written by Diana Cretu in response to the question - "What can I learn in a few minutes to be better at taking pictures?" on Quora.

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