Jul 102011

Lets begin with a  few basic tips.  These are practical tips that we come across in our usual photo capturing spree.  Here they are:

(Note:  Clicking the below photos will take you to its Flickr page, where you can select to view a larger version of each of these photos.)

  • Your Camera Manual was not included in your camera box just because the camera manufacturer had excess printed copies in hand.  It was placed in the box to make YOU, the User, aware of the different functions and capabilities of your equipment.  READ IT!!  Even if you are a “Techy” or someone who has had more camera changes than their own wardrobe, it would still be as helpful as it would be to a novice. Reading this manual and referring to it again when needed would allow you to get the maximum potential out of your equipment. There is certainly no disgrace in referring back to your camera manual, even if you are a “Know It All” professional.

Your Camera Manual

  • As soon as you are ready for your Photo “Workout”, remove your lens cap as a starter.  You do not want to miss “that one great shot” just because you were fiddling with your lens cap and the photo opportunity got away.  (You might say… Oh Come ‘on…  This is Common Sense!!!   Well,  this happens to camera owners every day… which emphasizes the fact that “spontaneity” may not necessarily fall under the realm of “common sense”  ;D )

Remove The Lens Cap

  • Camera’s are NOT made horizontal so that we take all photos horizontally. It is good to try a “Vertical Orientation” at times when the subject and scene demands it.  ; )

Vertical Orientation

  • Before you press the shutter button, at least make up your mind on WHAT you want and intend to shoot. A pointless spree of clicking everything that comes in your way will only give you a belly full of your computer’s hard drive space, without giving you any productive and creative output.
  • God has created our horizon horizontally leveled.  Who are we to change that!!  So, Unless it is a creative requirement or an attempt to present a different angle of view, DO NOT TILT the horizontal / vertical axis of a subject.

Tilted Horizon
Horizontally Leveled Horizon

  • It is certainly not necessary to keep the subject of our photo in the center of the frame.  In fact, keeping the subject off center in a lot of cases looks better and gives your shot better compositional characteristics.  At this point, I would not like to entangle my readers into the “Rule Of The Thirds” (We will surely talk about it in a few days). Nonetheless, the ROT was made to allow photographers to move their focal element and point of view around the frame. Use it with creativity.

Off Centered Subject

  • Whenever an opportunity presents itself, get close and personal  ; ))  err… I mean, Fill The Frame!!

Fill The Frame

  • There should be a difference between pressing the shutter button with “Our Eyes Closed”,  and “Our Eyes Viewing The Scene” that we intend to capture.  A Snapshot versus A Photograph. The later is better. Always try to “Compose” your shot with an intent to present creativity  ; ))
  • During the old Film Camera days,  we used to get our film rolls developed and processed into photographs.  Consider your “Out Of Camera” (OOC) images as negatives. Develop and Process them into Photographs.
  • Be critical of your own shots.  Look for faults.  Take another shot to correct the fault that you see…. Use the liberty of Free Instant Film… Your first shot cost you the amount you paid for the media card…. all your subsequent shots are free.. at least for the life of that media card!!…   The luxury of the Digital Era!

Above all, ENJOY your photographic exploration and what you learn in the process, share it with others. It will only enhance your own learning.

By the way…… Stay tuned for the upcoming “Mega” Post…. 

“The Blur Factor”!!  The hidden and not-so-discussed aspects behind the much talked about “Bokeh”

Want a sneak peek? Have a look at the image below.

The Blur Factor

Until then, be safe everyone!

Omer Sidat

  6 Responses to “Ten Practical Tips To Start With”

  1. I Just realized that I am re-reading this, I ahd actually followed your instructions (first thing I read almost the entire manual of my new nikon 3100). There are a few instincts I ahev developed by reading your blog.

    I am here to learn, I have been behind the lense almost all my life, but never did anything worth bringing into limelight. Now I want to learn and this seems a useful place to start.

    • Dear Naveed,
      Thank you very much for your comments. I am glad that you found my brief pointers to be of interest. It would indeed be my pleasure if I could contribute towards your learning.

      Keep on the look out for the forthcoming Mega Post “The Blur Factor”. I am sure you would enjoy as well as find it very useful in your day to day photography.

      To keep abreast with new posts on Shuttermania, I would highly recommend that you subscribe to the blog so you can receive emails whenever a new article or entry is posted.

      Thanks for visiting Shuttermania. Have fun!!

  2. Really enjoyed reading this blog post. Love your light natured writing style and your brilliant photography! Despite the fact that I don’t even own a ‘professional’ (as they like to call it!) camera, I am still avidly into photography. I am a university student on a student budget…Yet I hope to save up for a decent camera!

    Can’t wait for your next post! Keep up the great work. 🙂

    • Adil,

      Thank you very much for your kind words.

      My intent is to share the knowledge and skills gained over the years, with anyone who is willing to explore and learn. In the process, I expect to gain a huge quantum of additional knowledge myself.

      A professional DSLR is not necessarily the only equipment which can enable us to create great images. I have seen people creating compositions with a disposable camera and the results can put owners of top end equipment to shame.

      I do look forward to having you as a regular visitor to Shuttermania.

      Thank you.

  3. Excellent post. I checked my cell phones camera menu too after reading this 🙂 was very helpful indeed. Looking forward to the MEGA POST.. when is it coming out ?????

    Keep up the good work Omer bhai.


    • Thank you Ghayyur, for stopping by and liking the post.

      The “Blur Factor” mega post was actually due immediately after Eid Holidays. Unfortunately, I have been down with an extensive flu, which practically deprived me from all possible creative activities, including the completion of the Mega Post.

      I am working on it and inshaAllah it should be up on the blog within a week or so.


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