It is that time of the year again where we celebrate special moments that we love capturing. Everytime I look at a photo I relive the moment it was taken. Often I delete more images than I keep due to imperfection and lose a precious moment! Wouldn’t it be easier to have the perfect shot instead of sitting for hours on Photoshop trying to fix up an image.
Many people believe that having a good camera will produce fantastic images but unfortunately it does not help much, if you do not know how to use it! Taking before and after pictures at my clients homes and offices and our home renovations, did not prepare me in the use of my newly acquired digital camera for my husbands’ 60th Birthday celebration. I realized in the last moment that I had not asked anyone to take the photos. I grabbed the camera and started shooting away.
The end result is that I do not necessarily appear on the ones I should have and find my sister standing next to hubby where I should have been! Then you lose the moment because the camera did not focus at the right time or the flash goes when it shouldn’t or someone moves in front of you just as you are pressing the button.
At that point I frantically shoved the camera into my daughters’ partners’ hands with, “I don’t know what the …. is going on with this thing, please see what you can do?” I then realised that I should have been better organised in the first place, that when I purchased the camera should have taken time to read the manual and have learnt how to use it!
How often has something similar happened to you? Most of the time one is just to happy to having remembered the camera, let alone being prepared to take great photographs.
Ok, there is nothing I can do about it now … so am I just going to take snapshots in the future? I think not, so how can one be better prepared to take heartfelt shots?
- Plan your photography well in advance with everything else. Get someone else to take the photos of family events
- Make a list of pictures you must have.
- Know your equipment, have extra charged batteries, memory cards, chargers, external flash, lens accessories, and tripod ready.
- Before the guests arrive take shots of the table settings, flowers, etc.
- Keep the camera ready for spontaneous shots.
- Focus on the important object / people. Get closer or use the zoom function.
- Be the director ask people to get closer together, capture love, joy and emotions.
- Use the correct settings for the circumstance.
- Make sure that the composition is right, the faces clearly visible and everyone appearing comfortable.
- Take several pictures to enable you to choose the best.
- Eliminate background clutter, to avoid a tree or arrangement sprouting from the head of a subject.
- Keep your camera steady, use a tripod to avoid having blurry photos.
- Prevent Red eye – ask the subjects not to look at the camera, turn on the red-eye reduction or turn on more lights.
- Turn off the flash to capture romantic candlelight.
Wishing you a wonderful festive season and holiday filled with memorable moments and the ability to capture them for eternity.