Life behind a camera lens is a constant journey toward improvement. Style, technique, and equipment are always in flux; photographers looking to excel in their craft must be adaptable, above all else. But, because there are so many moving parts, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s most important in the image making process. SLR Lounge offers three straightforward focal points that will always remain integral to creating a fantastic photograph:
1. STICK TO A SINGULAR SUBJECT
Many photographs suffer from overload. When a picture has too much going on, it quickly becomes confusing for the human brain to process. Between all of the elements, audiences are left unsure of where to focus their attention. And often times, that leads to the photograph’s message being lost entirely. When you’re composing a shot, consider which elements you want to be front and center. Everything surrounding that focal point should be there to complement, not compete.
2. SEEK OUT A UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE
Once you’ve identified your subject matter, the next best step often involves putting the camera down for a minute. If you can afford it, take some time to explore your environment physically. More often than not, finding the best composition involves moving around, experimenting with angles, and adjusting your position in relation to the subject. Though it’s easy to rely on catch-all composition strategies, such as the rule of thirds, strong image makers step outside the box and actively challenge themselves.
3. WAIT FOR THE RIGHT MOMENT
No matter what situation you find yourself in, patience is key. A bad expression is a bad expression, no matter how great the light or composition paired with it happens to be. Don’t just snap wildly without any sort of direction. Watch your subject and surroundings closely, and you’ll eventually stumble into the perfect frame.
To some, these tidbits may seem like simple applications of common sense. Many have likely had this advice hashed out to them by mentors past. But that doesn’t make each of these points any less important. Trends wear out their welcome in time, and even cutting edge gear eventually becomes obsolete. These three points, on the other hand, can aid photographers of all backgrounds for the entirety of their shutterbug careers.