One of the things that really irritates me is the number of out of focus and downright terrible photos people post to Facebook. I know that photography is all about creating memories but really, do you want to show just how bad your photos are? So why are so many bad images posted to Facebook? The answer is simple, the point-and-shoot phenomenon. People point and shoot before they think. It’s not the type of camera or cellphone but rather the type of person.
So, how can people take better images for posting to Facebook and other social media sites. Follow these simple steps for immediate improvement to your photo taking abilities.
1. Think about the lighting
When taking an image have a look at your lighting. Firstly, make sure that there is enough light to take a photo. I know sometimes this is not possible but consider it carefully before you shoot. Secondly, look where the light is coming from. Unless you are trying for a specific effect never place the light behind your subject. The camera will always focus and meter off the brightest area of a scene so your subject will be dark and indistinct. Rather shoot with the light coming from behind the camera over the shoulder of the photographer. Good images need good lighting to get a good exposure.
2. Use your feet
Sometimes it’s more important to use your feet before your head. Use them to get in closer. Most of the time photos are being taken with cellphones or point n shoots with either no optical zoom or very little. So the subjects are little blips in the photo. Get close to your subject and fill the frame so your see more of the person or object. Don’t use digital zoom as it degrades the image. Try it out and see which image you prefer. I like to see more of the memory I am making rather than all the clutter around scene.
3. Change your angle
Ninety percent of images are shot from in front of the subject approximately 5 feet (1.5m) above the ground. They all look the same, just different people. Change your angle so that you shoot from either low down or high up. Move around from your left to your right so that you aren’t directly in front of your subjects. Turn your camera at a forty five degree angle or hold it high above your head or at your waist. Digital photography allows you to review quickly and see if it works.
4. Think outside the box
Try to come up with a composition that is out of the ordinary. Be creative and take time to think about what you are going to shoot before pressing the shutter button. Look at the scene and ask yourself if you have seen a picture like this before. If you have then try another composition or angle. The key is to experiment.
5. Review your images
Before uploading to Facebook, review the images you’ve taken. Look through them and delete or remove the ones that you aren’t totally happy. Rather upload 10 good images than 50 average or bad ones. A little time taken to ask yourself whether you are proud of the image will ensure that your photo gallery stands out from the rest.
The bottom line is to learn digital photography and apply it so that you become a photographer and not just a picture taker. A little bit of thought and putting into practise some basic photographic principles will help you create images that you can be proud of. Facebook is there to showcase your images so try to upload only your best ones. Just because people aren’t making funny comments about them doesn’t mean they aren’t thinking them.