#1 What’s important to know when learning photography

What’s important to know when you’re learning photography?

  • Exposure
  • Focus and sharpness
  • Composition
  • Creative use of Light

Exposure

I consider Exposure to be the most important aspect of photography because if you’re photos are too bright or too dark they’re not going to be of much use.

When photos are too bright you “blow out the details” which means you have “little or no pixels to work with” and you are unable to get these back, once they have been lost they have been lost for good.

If your photos are too dark you have more chance of pulling some data from the image but not of good quality if the image is too dark.

It’s best to get a good exposure which means the photo is not to light or too dark. There is sufficient detail in whatever you’re photographing to provide a good photo. However there may be occasions where you might be trying to create a mood and may want a darker photo for creative purposes and this is fine as long as it is your intention to do so.

Focus and Sharpness

Achieving correct focus is critical in getting the photo you want, making sure that you are focusing on the part of the image that you intend to be in focus and sharp. Using a shallow Depth of field is a creative effect that draws the eye to the sharpest part of the image while the foreground and background is out of focus, but nobody wants to look at an image of somebody who is out of focus while the background is sharp, this is an example of getting the wrong focus point. your camera’s manual is the best source of focusing information.

Sharpness describes the clarity of detail in a photo. Although post production can help towards improving sharpness in a photo it is ultimately limited by your camera equipment and shooting technique. Two fundamental factors contribute to the perceived sharpness of an image: resolution and acutance.

Composition

“Composition” describes placement of relative objects and elements in a photograph. Consequently, composition is a key aspect of a good photography. There is hardly a way to overemphasize the importance of composition. Improving composition will come with practice and viewing your photos with a critical eye.

Creative use of light

This is a more advanced topic and will push you’re photography to another level once you understand how to use light to enhance you’re photos. It’s all about creating a 3 dimensional image on a 2 dimensional surface. Don’t concern yourself with this until you have mastered the basics first. You need to competent before you can become a master. Just be aware that mastery of photography ultimately lies in the creative use light.