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5 Common Mistakes Newbie Photographers Make

October 22nd, 2014

common photography mistakesJust like most things in life, photography is a skill that can be improved. Newbies often make subtle mistakes that spoil their photos and have no idea how to fix them. In this post we are going to go through five common mistakes beginner photographers make.

1. The Horizon Line Is Not Straight

This is the most common mistake I’ve seen in many photos, including my own. True, you can fix this later on using software, but that will crop your image. As a result, you may lose something you intended to be in your shot or will have to stick to the original one with the tilted horizon. To fix this problem, always make sure your camera is not tilted. You can use references in your composition, like a wall or a tree, to make your images look straight. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Tips for Choosing Your Best Photos

October 15th, 2014

sorting your photosWhat’s the most time-consuming and frustrating part of photography? If you ask me, it’s sorting through your shots trying to choose your best photos. All those unedited photos look so similar and there is so much junk that it’s easy to get annoyed and leave your images as an unsorted digital pile. Worse still, you spend hours looking at your photos, agonizing which ones to keep and which to delete. If this sounds familiar, read on and hopefully these tips will help!

1. Don’t Let Unsorted Photos Accumulate

The worst mistake photographers make is when they let shots from different sessions accumulate in one bloated “Unsorted” folder. Make it a habit to sort through your photos as soon as you come back from a session, so that unsorted photos don’t accumulate.

Another thing to remember is to avoid taking too many shots in the first place. If you still remember the days of film cameras, imagine that you don’t have the luxury of unlimited storage space and compose your photos well before you release the shutter. Read the rest of this entry »

4 Beginner Tips for Landscape Photography

October 7th, 2014

Do you browse Pinterest and repin all those breathtaking landscape photos thinking that you’ll never be able to create anything like that? Actually, shooting great landscapes is not that hard. Here are four tips that will help you get started.

1. Find a Location

Location is key to great landscape photography. To be fair, if you live somewhere where there are no photographic opportunities for landscapes, you can’t expect to shoot anything spectacular. So you may need to research interesting and beautiful locations near where you live and plan a trip. Google will help you plan your trip – search for the place where you live and check out the image search to get inspiration. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Find Great Subjects for Photos at Your Doorstep

October 1st, 2014

Have you ever browsed a photography blog and then felt envious because the photos you saw were simply awesome? And then you thought that you could never take anything like that because you lived in the wrong place. Let me tell you that there is no wrong or right place in photography – you can take great shots right at your doorstep, without having to make expensive trips. Here are a few simple ideas that will help you create beautiful and creative images. You don’t have to use expensive equipment, nor use software to heavily manipulate your photos. All you need is some natural light and your imagination.

Turn an Everyday Scene Into a Photo

This is the first thing you’ll need to learn if you want to take beautiful photos. And to be able to see an everyday scene as a photo, you’ll need to:

  • mentally separate a scene into various elements that may look good on a photo
  • concentrate on the selected element(s) and develop your idea
  • study the scene and mentally “preview” it as a photo
  • recognize the potential of light, color and focus
  • take your camera and try different angles to see which one works best

Read the rest of this entry »

Canon Powershot S120 Digital Camera Review

September 24th, 2014

Canon-S120Are you thinking about getting a new compact camera? Something slim, but with decent zoom, Full HD video support and lots of different options, then you should have a look at Canon PowerShot S120. Here’s our review of this camera.

Key Features

The main things that should attract you as a photographer are not the option to share photos via Wi-Fi directly from the camera and not the camera’s ability to shoot 1080p/60p Full HD video, but its powerful DIGIC 6 processor and a pretty large CMOS sensor. Plus it’s the first S-series model that has an f/1.8 lens with the 24mm wide end, which makes this camera very useful for taking photos in a tight interior. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Tips for Awesome Close-Up Photography Using a Compact Camera

September 16th, 2014
Up In the Sky

by Eliza Donovan, taken with a compact camera

There are so many articles and tutorials for shooting macro with a dSLR and a macro lens, but next to none for those trying to take close-up photos with their point-and-shoot cameras that have a Macro mode. We’ve decided to put things right and post some tips that will help you take great close-up photos with your compact camera.

1. Use your camera’s Macro mode

Sounds obvious to you? Well, you’ll be surprised how many people forget their camera has a special mode to take close-ups (I can’t call it proper macro because macro means 1:1 ration life-size or bigger subjects). Try to shoot a close-up photo in automatic mode and the results will most likely be ridiculous. So, before you start blaming your camera for everything, check out its Macro mode and see if that makes a difference. It should. Read the rest of this entry »

The Dos and Don’ts of Family Portraits

September 10th, 2014
family portrait

photo by Ben Earwicker

Family photos, especially family portraits, are among the most popular images on DropShots. As someone who has a lot of relatives, I know how difficult it is to snap a great-looking family portrait. That’s why I’ve decided to post some DOs and DON’Ts of photographing your family. Hopefully, these simple tips will help you create stunning photos.

Family Portrait DOs

1. Make everyone stand/sit closer to each other

We all try to make our family portraits look as real-life as possible. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t “edit” real-life situations. Under normal circumstances, your family members won’t be sitting or standing as close to each other as you’d like for a photo. So don’t be shy to ask your family members to move closer together. This will not only make them fit nicely, but will also fill the portrait with that special family warmth. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Shoot Great Photos with Your Pocket Camera

September 2nd, 2014
Waiting fishing boats

by Eliza Donovan, taken with Samsung ST88

Sooner or later all amateur photographers start thinking about getting a dSLR because they think that it’s impossible to shoot great pictures with their pocket or mobile cameras. Yes, dSLRs are great. But this doesn’t mean that you have to go and get one (and spend hundreds on dollars on it). You can take amazing photos with a cheap camera, especially if you follow these simple tips.

1. Use the Built-in Scene Modes

Most point-and-shoot cameras and even mobile cameras have scene modes for shooting landscapes, portraits, sports events (read fast moving subjects) close-up shots, sunsets and so on. My suggestion is that you take advantage of all these modes and don’t always stick to Auto. True, Auto usually produces very decent results, but often it makes a total mess of your photos. That’s because unlike you, your camera doesn’t know that you are trying to photograph a beautiful flower with a bee in it or a racing motorbike. Your camera only sees bits of light and it’s trying to make the best guess. The scene modes actually tell your camera what sort of exposure, shutter speed and aperture you are most likely to need. The scene modes make your camera a bit more clever and help it choose the right settings. And that can make a real difference. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Most Popular dSLR Cameras

August 26th, 2014

Nokon D3300There are so many dSLR cameras available today that it can be difficult to choose the one that’s right for you. It’s true that being a photographer is not all about having a dSLR camera. But let’s face it, there will come a time when your mobile phone or point-and-shoot camera will meet its limits and you’ll need a professional or semi-professional camera. And that’s when you may become totally confused by everything that’s on offer. To help you make your choice, we’ve decided to list five most popular dSLR cameras and give you a brief description of each of them.

1.Nikon D3300

If you’re looking to buy your first dSLR, then Nikon D3300 is the perfect camera for you. It’s a 24.2 MP camera that shoots great photos and stunning full HD videos, is very easy to use, comes with a 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II kit zoom lens. It’s great for shooting panoramas too and has a special guide mode to help you learn all the camera’s features and options. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Tips for Shooting Great Portraits

August 19th, 2014

What sort of photos do you post on DropShots? Landscapes, photos from your travels, flowers and macro, or people? My guess is that you have lots of photos with people in them. It’s not a secret that it’s really hard to take beautiful photos of people, especially if you are not a professional photographer. That’s why we thought we’d post five tips for shooting great portraits and share them with all DropShots users.

1. Make everything simple

The first rule for taking great and realistic portraits is to not overcomplicate everything. Don’t try to be clever and let the subjects work for you in the most natural surrounding. Try to take photos of people with using natural light, level backgrounds and avoid things like horizon lines running through people’s heads. Remember that the people you are taking the photo of are the subject and not the details that surround them. Read the rest of this entry »