8 Tips for Taking Damn Good Photos

 

"What the hell is this?"

You've heard it before. It's the oft-sputtered angst of a neophyte in total shock that his highly anticipated out-of-the-can of images didn't quite fare as expected. If you don't want to be that guy, then learning a few key elements of photography can elevate you from rookie status to skilled photographer in no time. Below are a few of the essentials to help you launch.

 

1. Know Your Equipment

Whether you own $190 iPhone or a $4500 Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, today's tech comes loaded with a sailor's catch of features and accessories. But just like a luxury car, sadly, few of them are ever explored or used at all. Yeah, we get it. The user manual is thick, and you don't have time. Knowing how your camera works, however, gives you an arsenal of onboard tools for the trade that makes you look like a genius just by turning the knob to the next setting.

 

2. Lighting

There's enough material written on camera lighting to fill AT&T stadium. Ok, bad analogy, but you can never learn too much about proper lighting. Most photographers prefer natural lighting over artificial. It creates a warm feel that looks better through the lens. If you shoot outside, you'll get the best sunlight during the early-mid morning and early evening hours. Noonday light washes out photos and creates awkward shadows. Plus it's just too hot.

 

Guy taking photo in city

 

3. What's Your Angle?

Ever notice that most women who take selfies do so with the phone elevated in the air? There's a reason for this, and you can probably guess it. In photography angles are everything. No, the camera doesn't add ten pounds; but you might if you shoot your subject from the wrong angle.

Quick tips: Keep the camera elevated at eye level or higher; shoot your subject from the side instead of head on; pay attention to clothing and how it enhances the body; and, find the right pose that compliments someone's best features.

 

4. 'Dude, that looks 'shopped.'

There's a difference between enhancement and total bullshit, and most people pick up on it right away. Scroll down your Facebook feed, and you'll notice that many of the people in the photos look like they just stepped out of Panem.

Modern software can transform any ugly schmuck into Chris Hemsworth. But if you're not Thor, then you're not fooling anyone. Editing software such as Lightroom and Photoshop is designed to be used sparingly and in good taste. The rule of thumb? Less is more. Make needed adjustment to highlight certain features, but ease up off the heavy contrast and coloring just a bit.

 

5. Composition

A good photo is not just the subject. It's everything in the entire frame. When taking a picture consider what's in the background. Create an entire concept with both the subject and the landscape. This adds value to the photo and draws your viewers in. Be aware of background 'noise' that may distract from the subject. What's that guy doing back there with half his face cut off??

 

Nikon camera lens 50mm

 

6. The Right Lens

A key component to a capturing a killer photo can be choosing the right lens with an aperture that can catch the right amount of light. Not all lenses are created equal or perform the same function. If you want close-up pictures, use a macro lens. Want one far away? A telephoto lens will do that. Other lens types include wide-angle, fish-eye, tilt and shift, soft-focus, infrared. Standard lenses are also available for novice photographers who just getting started.

 

7. Forget Posing. Go Candid

Children hate to pose and act like spoiled little brats during a photo shoot. Guess what? So do adults. Too many posed shots are quite the yawner and don't stir a good conversation. An effective photographer is better at hit-and-run then a dealer on the West Side.

Rather than settle for predictable poses, go for the candids. Look for the shots that nobody expected. Capture the memorable moments that tell the story. They're the ones that make people laugh and cry. And rarely does this ever happen in posed shooting.

 

8. Get It Right Out of the Can

All the equipment and all the post-editing image software in the world can't make up for a talented, well-trained photographer. It's the equivalent of recording an album with shitty guitars and drums, but expecting it to sound like 'Dark Side of The Moon'. If you take your hobby or career seriously, then learn your craft.

Get the fundamentals down and get the pictures correct out of the can rather than hoping to cover up a multitude of sins in the post. An effective photographer can go into almost setting and come out with amazing raw images straight from the camera roll.

COMMENTS

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Why Hunting Can Boost Your Well-Being and Happiness

Since the beginning of time, humans have depended on animals to survive. Although hunting has always been a primary means of food, there have been other uses for wild game such as clothing and shelter.

If you've never hunted then, your manhood is in

10 Tech Gadgets That Will Make Your Life Easier

At Gentleman Gate we love toys. Lots of them. Big, shiny man-size toys with lots of buttons, features, and laser beams. We know you do too. Modern technology makes our lives easier and more tolerable. And let's be honest, it's downright fun. With so many de

Why Every Gentleman Should Speak More Than One Language

There are many great reasons why gentlemen should learn more than one language. The first is just to expand horizons. For example, if you're a guy who loves to travel, you'll find that learning a foreign language gives you the power to communicate with stra

5 Rules for Building Muscle Mass

Are you the guy who slips through the slightly open crack in the locked gate to let your friends in on the other side? Maybe you're the one who cringes every time you have to take your shirt off whenever your team is 'skins'. If so, building muscle mass may

How to Master Making Irish Coffee

Irish coffee could spark as much debate among gentlemen as politics. Like many other things in life, everyone is a self-proclaimed expert on the beverage, and everyone has their own 'special brew' that is somehow supposed to change your life forever. Making

How to Start a Business with Limited Funding

 

Get Started with Limited Funding, Like a Boss

Sure, every now and again a man has to do something that he isn’t all that excited about – slaving away for 40+ hours a week to get that paycheck and take care of his famil

DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter Drone

  • The drone has a sophisticated GPS technology for easy automatic takeoff and auto return home
  • App enables easy monitoring/camera operation
  • Capture 4k ultra HD video at 30 fps
  • Equipped with perfect stabilization technology that can produce clean image and capture smooth pictures while hovering in the air

A popular and well-known drone from DJI with 4k HD video at 30 fps, stabilization technology for clean/smooth videos and GPS technology for automatic takeoff and Auto Return Home. If you are working in the entertainment industry where capturing images or recording videos are important, this type of flying camera can be pretty handy. There are a lot of handy features to expect from this seemingly cute device. For instance, it offers HD 4K video with 30 fps that include 12.0 MP photos. The camera with its f/2.8 lens is able to cover a broad field of range to deliver the clear, sharp, detailed, and crisp image. So far, this DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter Drone is the most sophisticated and smartest flying camera with all the important

Google Cardboard VR Glasses

  • Complete Google Cardboard Kit with easy setup and complete features
  • VR experience with cinematic HD visuals from your smartphone's screen using its biconvex lenses
  • The cardboard is easy to setup and can instantly play videos with QR codes
  • Offers immersive 3D virtual reality experience for a great value

Your complete Google Carboard Kit for immersive VR experiences, it's easy to setup and can instantly play videos with QR codes. Now everyone can get an affordable 3D virtual reality experience. However, you could be the tech savvy person who wants to enjoy a good and high-quality entertainment without spending a fortune. That’s a good reason, after all, a high-quality entertainment and enjoyment don’t always cost you a fortune. Well, be sure that you can expect the best with this Google Cardboard VR Glasses and not get any disappointing quality. This kit is compatible with most devices, for a starter. It is compatible with Samsung Galaxy, Moto X, and also Nexus devices (Don’t forget to check o

Lightweight Tripod with Bag

  • Lightweight tripod with adjustable-height legs and rubber feets
  • Two built-in bubble view levels and 3-way head to allow for tilt and swivel motion; portrait or landscape options
  • Compatible with most digital cameras, video cameras, still cameras, GoPro devices, smartphone adapters, and scopes
  • Extends from 25 inches to 60 inches when center post is fully extended; Carrying case included 

Amazon Basic Tripod with Bad is the perfect choice for the lightweight tripod. Equipped with adjustable legs and rubber feet and have two built-in bubble view levels and 3-way head to allow for tilt and swivel motion. You can adjust the rubber feets to achieve the perfect position and with the camera plate, you know when the camera is level. Easy to set up and remove from mounting to ensure fast transitions between shots. Including a carrying case which makes storage and transports a snap. The tripod’s legs can extend from 20” to 48”. Leg locks release smoothly and glide easily to your desired height. Crank up the center pos

Myo Gesture Control Armband

  • Be a modern wizard and control technology wireless with hand gestures and motion
  • Offers cool solutions for home automation, drones, computer games and virtual reality
  • Compatible with Android, iOS, Windows and Mac devices through wireless connection
  • Over 100 applications let you control music, games, presentations and more

Control technology wireless with gestures and motion, this armband reads the electrical activity of your muscles and the motion of your arm. In their Myo Market, you will find a wide range of different applications to use. Anybody can develop apps and build solutions for home automation, drones, computer games, virtual reality and more. Check the video above to see what amazing things you can do with this technology. As said, Myo Gesture Control Armband  reads the muscle activity of your forearm and voila, you control technology without touching. Just move your hand and you can browse the web, play videos, control your drones, and much more. The Myo Gesture Control Armband is a tec

Security Camera System

  • A security camera system that is simple, reliable and most important, secure
  • All the things you need is combined into this great package. It is easy to setup, enables surveillance day and night, has motion detection with alerts and more features
  • Equipped with 4 weatherproof high-resolution cameras that are easy to manage and control from your smartphone
  • You can also create customized motion detection and alerts which prevent false alarms

There are things we all worry about like; Did you forget to close the garage door this morning or are the kids home from school yet? When you have a security home system it's easier to focus on the things that are important. You will be able to record professional video quality through four high-resolution cameras which are easy to manage. A security camera at the top front door of your house has become a necessity regardless where you live. This Amcrest security system offers you more than just the basic requirements of a security camera as it features a complete and high-end course of function

Beats Pill Portable Speaker

  • One of the most popular portable speakers on the market
  • Despite its compact size you get a powerful sound
  • Managing and connecting this speaker is as simple as a tap
  • The quality of the sound is superb and adjusting it is easy
  • Works with all of your Bluetooth devices up to 30 feet away

It's no surprise that you recognize this wireless and portable speaker from Beats, and even though it is small you get a powerful sound. You probably think that a speaker is a speaker – it only delivers the wave sound properly and correctly the way you like it. This portable speaker, on the other hand, is the smart one because it is able to do things that you may never imagine would be so easy. For a starter, when you want to connect your smartphone with this Beats Pill Portable Speaker, you only need to tap the phone once. In case you have two speakers (Beats Pills, mind you, not the others), you can tap them together so they will play your song just like that – one will be the right sound source and one will be the left

Motorola Moto 360

  • The second generation of Motorola Moto 360 smartwatch with that classic round design
  • Featuring water resistance, accelerometer, gyroscope, ambient light sensor and optical heart rate monitor
  • Compatible with both Android and iPhone with its Android wear operating system
  • Equipped with Gorilla Glass 3, 1.2 GHz Quadcore processor, 512 RAM and 4 GB internal storage, Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity
  • Available in different colors, sizes, and styles, so you can find the perfect fit in your life.

For a healthy relationship, you sometimes need space, including the one with your phone. The solution is to have a smartwatch which streamlines the information that matters to you. Stay connected and up to date by getting messages, news, weather and more without having to constantly check your phone. It also monitors your steps, calories and heart rate, so you can meet your goals and stay healthy. This smartwatch that has many features. With it, you don’t need to cling to your smartphone every day. This smartwatch will stream

Kolibree Smart Electric Toothbrush

  • Featuring real-time feedback and makes brushing an enjoyable experience for children with games and performance tracking
  • With 3D motion sensors, it advises the optimal brushing positions and gives you advice on areas that you miss to maintain that bright smile
  • Teaches both children and parents the right techniques of brushing using fun apps
  • It also has a sleek design and easy to use for everyone with a single push-button

This slim smart electric toothbrush for the whole family gives you real-time feedback and makes brushing an enjoyable experience with games on your smartphone. Allows monitoring of children’s toothbrushing performances. Provides fun games in an appropriate length of time for better brushing habit. Keep your kids motivated with games, collectible badges and score levels. Dramatically reduces plaque and uses gentle Sonic Vibrations to not harm sensitive gums and at the same time collects data to your smart device. A new type of smart toothbrush that allows better and more fun toothbrushin