- A First-Timer's Guide to Getting Professional Prints of Your Photos
- Why You Need to Print Your Photos
Image Credit: CoffeeAndMilk via iStock
Here's a little secret...
You don't have to be a professional photographer to create professional-looking photos.
All it takes is a little know-how and a few tips for improving your work, and you'd be surprised at the results you can get.
Here are a few of my favorite tips for turning your photos into beautiful pieces of art.
Take Advantage of Dramatic Lighting
Photography is all about capturing light, and not just any kind of light.
Instead, developing an eye for good lighting - light that's contrasty and dramatic - can help you elevate your photos to the next level.
Using landscape photography as an example, shooting at sunrise or sunset will give you access to the best light of the day.
Light early in the morning and late in the evening is very soft because it has to travel through more atmosphere to reach Earth.
That softness makes for subtle shadows that look great against the warm glow of the light at that time of day.
Sunrise and sunset aren't just great for landscapes, either.
Take a friend or a family member out at these times to serve as a model, put them between the sunlight and your camera, and you can get a beautiful backlighting effect, as shown above.
The drama associated with this kind of light is gorgeous and much more pleasing to the eye than natural light at midday, when there's harsh shadows and bright contrast.
If you want your photos to look better, shoot at sunrise or sunset!
Work the Depth of Field
The depth of field of an image is the area that's in focus.
In some instances, you want a very shallow depth of field, like in the portrait above.
Having a nice, blurry background as a result of a shallow depth of field helps separate the subject from the background. The contrast of the crisp sharpness of the model and the beautiful background blur is very pleasing to the eye.
Conversely, if you're photographing a landscape, you generally want as much of it in focus as possible with a very large depth of field.
As you can see in the image above, everything is nicely focused so that you can take in the full view of the landscape.
The question is, how do you manipulate depth of field?
There are actually a number of factors that change the depth of field, which Dylan Bennett explains in the video below.
Don't Rely on Cheap Prints
One of the biggest mistakes that beginner photographers make is having cheap prints made of their photos.
Why spend all that time and energy creating a beautiful photograph if you're just going to have a big let-down in the end with a low-quality print?!
Instead, one of the biggest keys to creating images that look professional is having professional-quality prints made.
And I know what you're thinking...
Who can afford to have professional prints made?
You'd actually be surprised at what kind of prints you can get without busting your budget.
I get my prints from CanvasHQ, and not only are they budget-friendly but they're also gallery-quality prints.
We're talking archival-grade canvas, high-quality inks, handmade frames...you name it!
In fact, these prints are so well made that they're backed by a 100-percent guarantee. If you don't like it, just send it back within 30 days. I promise you, though...you won't send these suckers back!
Something else I appreciate about CanvasHQ is the speed with which they can produce prints.
I often get my prints in just two or three days, which is crazy since they're made in Arkansas and I live in California. These guys truly have an incredible turnaround time.
They're also just genuine, caring people, so you know that your images are in good hands.
I'm not saying that you need to have big canvas prints made of every photo you take, but the special ones that you want to hang on your wall (like the ones I have of my son, shown above) should most definitely be in the form of a high-quality print. And as far as high-quality, professional-looking prints go, there's no better place to get them than CanvasHQ!