As an amateur photographer, you know that there are professional photographers who make a living out of taking pictures. That could be one factor that drives you to this career and master the craft you love to do. Most amateur photographers feel inferior because they are fully aware they are just starting out. Surprisingly, a few beginners can catch up with the pros. You, too, can be one of these aspiring photographers and be someone who excels in the field. If you think you cannot be better than these professionals, you might want to give it a second thought and prove yourself wrong. Even an amateur photographer can be just as good as a professional photographer. Provided that you acquire the fundamental techniques to boost your skills in taking photos, you can indeed thrive well. Some people take pictures and call themselves a photographer. But, you know there are real photographers, and you are not simply like the ‘wanna-be's’. You can level up the game with the smart tips for amateur photographers that we will share with you. But first, let us give you a good perspective about what is an amateur photographer and how it differs from being a professional.
In an article published by Digital Photography School, they define the word amateur as “a person who engages in a pursuit or activity for pleasure rather than for financial benefit.” This is a definition derived from a dictionary that will simply separate an amateur photographer from a pro. An amateur photographer can be practicing the craft of photography as a part of personal interest and fulfillment.
Amateur Photographer Vs. Professional Photographer
While the idea of separating an amateur photographer from professional sparked many debates, there are ways to look at it closely and see the difference. If we look at the dictionary to search for the meaning of the word professional, it is pretty straightforward. Professional is defined as ‘a person who earns a living for their occupation’. This is why the arguments of whether an amateur photographer can be simply resolved when it comes to financial involvement. We can say that amateur photographers practice for personal benefit while professional photographers do it for business. This is how we can simply put it.
Tips For Amateur Photographers to Level Up Their Game
Here you can become an amateur photographer and remember these tips to excel in the field. Whether or not you are planning to be a pro, you must learn the basics and go get the brightest spot to stand out.
You must be familiar with your gears before doing some photoshoots. Prepare your camera before going out. Make sure it is working well. You can bring a tripod to hold the camera steady. Indeed you can’t be taking pictures with shaky hands. Stability can be a crucial factor in high-resolution images. Moreover, a tripod can help you frame photos better – the perfect shots you want to achieve. Well-experienced photographers know the importance of preparing the gears like going into a battlefield. This simple yet very significant tip can help you win your goals in photography.
It can easily be told if a picture is taken by an inexperienced photographer the way it was captured. Some put their subject at the center, making the picture look predictable and usual. If you want to level up in the game as an amateur photographer, you must learn the rule of thirds. As per WordPress blog, the rule of thirds is one of the better-known composition tactics and is perfect for beginners. Divide the frame of your shot into thirds, both horizontally and vertically. Then, place your subject along one of the lines to increase visual interest.
Digital Photography School states that “if you place points of interest in the intersections or along the lines, your photo becomes more balanced and will enable a viewer of the image to interact with it more naturally.” Indeed, you can practice these smart tactics the next time you go out for a photoshoot. If you know the rules by heart, you will undoubtedly come up with images like they were taken by an expert.
3. Keep it Less and Simple
Shoot less and keep it simple. It is challenging to do this part because there are times when you need to have more variations, and taking as many pictures as you can is ideal. But, think about this – if you are to concentrate on how and what you want to come up with, photographing less gives you absolute results. A well-experienced photographer makes sure they get the right angles, lighting, and overall composition of the photographs they want to see. Keep it less and simple. It’s the secret of most professional photographers to save themselves and their clients from a bulk of photos to choose from. Slowly but surely is what they always say.
We’re pretty sure you haven’t seen a photographer taking pictures like a statue. Now, we’ve talked about the importance of stability in taking pictures. However, when you keep moving as you take pictures, it gives you different subject angles. Do not be stationary. Try to get a few shots from every angle or perspective. You don’t want to see the same pictures over and over again because you’ve been shooting from one angle alone. So, keep your feet moving, get down on your knees, etc.
5. Play With the Light Effects
Use the power of light to your advantage as an amateur photographer. Lighting is an integral part of photography. If you pay close attention to the light source, you can play with some light effects on your photos. There are several instances where you can compare the light sources to what will give you better results. For example, you can check if natural light is better than artificial light. You can experiment with your own camera as to what it will look like with or without a flash. Is it better to shoot with direct sunlight or overcast daylight? This series of experiments can give you a personal experience and knowledge of what you can come up with using light effects. Again, make sure you use it to your advantage.
Do you want to end up with crisp, clean, and high-resolution images? You have to figure out your own camera first and how its focus works.
Based on Improve Photography, you should focus on a precise aspect of your subject. For example, it’s too broad to focus on someone’s face. You should focus your camera on one of their eyes or another specific facial feature. This will give you a crystal clear resolution of the subject.
7. Get Ready for Criticism
Criticism can make or break your entire interest as an amateur photographer. However, honest feedback from people you know or from your audience can give you a broader perspective about the field. You can even get criticism from well-experienced photographers who have mastered the craft already. As for beginners, this will serve as a good starting point to improve your skills and level up your game. As you can see, no one in any field gets successful without being criticized. When you receive criticism, think positively of what good it can do to you. It can help you to be more than who you think you can be. And, indeed, it is a great way to play the game.
8. Learn, Practice, and Repeat
While it’s given that practice makes perfect, as an amateur photographer, you have to understand that the only way to be better is by taking perfect shots. Some may have mastered photography in their own ways – self-taught or by profession. You mustn’t stop knowing the basics or simply learning the rules by heart. You must go out, take photographs and hone your skills regularly. Remember, more practice will help you get more exposure to your chosen craft. Keep it up.
Image taken from Strikingly website
Strikingly have worked with many talented photographers who want to showcase their works online. We’ve partnered with both amateur and professional photographers already. That is why these tips to become an amateur photographer are a stepping ground for someone aspiring to do more in photography. The final tip is about you creating an online portfolio for yourself. You can design a gallery website with our artistic web templates for your photo exhibition online. All the tips you have read will be nothing without you going online and showing how you take pictures. With Strikingly, you can be one of our million users who become global with their stunning online portfolios. Take the first step now.