Analog or film cameras are as ancient as portable audio cassette players, thanks to the massive rise in computer and digital technology. Digital cameras are easier to use and offer greater convenience compared to film cameras. Today, amateur photographers enjoy easy access to digital cameras in phones, handheld games, portable music players, and more. It’s as simple as pressing a button, hooking it to a computer and printing photos from a printer.
Unlike other camera-ready devices, the standard digital camera or SLR provides focus and flash capabilities that create impressive pictures and lasting memories. Grab your new digital camera and discover where to start first and how to make the best use of it.
Getting ready to shoot
You’re excited about your new digital camera, but wait a moment to get acquainted with your camera before taking pictures. Learning the important features and capabilities of your camera allow you to use it to its fullest potential. First, check the user manual to locate the settings and define the camera’s icons. This ensures you’re not pressing a button to eject the batteries when you think you’ve found a once in a lifetime shot. Explore your camera’s controls and check the battery status.
In the beginning, you’ll want enough storage space in your digital camera to get acquainted with it and snap a few photos, which will not require much space. Fortunately, the camera includes internal memory called a buffer, so you can take some practice shots and discard those you don’t like. Otherwise, you can make additional space transferring photos to your computer memory. The buffer limits the amount of storage space for photos when a storage disk or memory card is not inserted into the camera. So, if you’re planning to travel on a weeklong trip without your computer, its best to invest in a memory card until you’re ready to transfer photos to your computer.
Watching the light
For great looking pictures, lighting makes a big difference. Before capturing your subject, use natural light to avoid excessive dark or light photos. Natural light provides a good background on your subject and reduces the chance for shadowing. If you’re indoors with poor lighting, check if your camera has fill flash, also called forced flash. This option creates even color with remarkable lighting, which limits the need for photo editing after the shot. Practice a few photos with and without flash in several lit areas and you’ll discover dramatic contrast in your photos. Based on your experiment, choose the appropriate location and lighting for your indoor photo.
Once you’ve found your subject and the proper lighting, hold the camera steady with your left or right hand and support the lens with the other. If your camera is placed on auto focus, simply point and shoot. If you’re looking for an action shot and your camera doesn’t include this feature, simply focus on your subject while pressing halfway down on the shutter button. Get a good view of your subject, then continue pressing the button down to complete the shot. The camera will automatically adjust the exposure to catch the person or object in motion. Whether you’re taking still or action shots, remember to take multiple photos in one setting. You can always discard or edit them later.
Practicing makes perfect
You’re learning a new technology, so the best way to learn is through practice, not just for your son’s third birthday party. Carry your camera with you to work, on errands, and during a walk in the park. Capture whatever subject interests you. You’d be amazed at your progress and you’ll definitely find some photos you really like. And, if you don’t, it’s no problem… just press "delete".