So, you like to take pictures and you’re passionate about angles and techniques. You love how photography expresses feelings and ideas. But you want to jump ahead; setting a career as a photographer, improving your skills to be a professional, developing a good portfolio, or growing as an amateur.
But first, you have to pass the thin line between those who take photos and those who are called photographers. To do that, you have to set things straight in order, think clearly, and get organized. Here are some tips that every photography enthusiast should follow before calling himself a photographer.
1. Be Clear
Equilibrium is a must. Technique and creativity are brothers. If you want to succeed on the field you always need to remember the greatest photographers of all times made balance between their two hemispheres.
Also, you need to know where you are going. Ask yourself: What kind of photographer I want to be? Do I want to make a living from photography? Is my interest on photography artistic or other?
Is like learning to walk: take baby steps, master them, then you can run. If you answered those questions you can be sure you have half of the way walked. Then you can go on.
2. Choose your Gear
This is not the most important phase, but surely one of the first. A vast majority of photographers know that taking good pictures do not depends on an expensive camera. Sure, an amazing camera will help you do an amazing job. But what if you don’t know how to use it?
There are some online tools that can help you choose a camera. Visit snapsort.com, pick a price range, and the website generate an offer according to what you ask. Depends on your budget, and how fancy are your wishes.
The equipment you will use is not that important. You can take amazing shots with an old reflex, or with a brand new DSLR. However, the most important things you need are: Camera, Tripod and Lenses.
3. Know your camera
It is important to know deeply how your camera works. If you have a new one, read the manual. If it’s an old one, search the web for a guide. Get used to the concepts: ISO, the f-number, aperture, exposure, focus, shutter speed, composition, and so on.
When you master the basics, the rest is up to practice.
4. Read, Learn and Apply
If you are taking photography seriously, you have to study. Learn your craft. Eat books for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Read blog posts, tips, magazines, online tutorials. Sign up on a course, online or in a classroom; look for someone to mentor you.
Explode your creativity with the tools you learn. Teach others what you have learnt. Gain knowledge from the greatest; Look for interviews, read their books. Watch all the pictures you can. Try to emulate who has experience.
One of the biggest photographers of all times, Henri Cartier-Bresson, once said that you should not over-think composition. Photography, as he said, is an instinctive art. ”In photography, visual organization can stem only from a developed instinct”, pointed. Based on this, you can assume the importance of testing.
Don’t be afraid to experiment. Create. Kneel. Put yourself on the ground. Be bold; try to find the most outrageous angles by dangerous locations. Then you can see the results. It’s not going to be easy, you will not like every capture you make, but insistence will give you amazing results.
6. Have Will, Passion, Time and Perseverance
Without these, all your previous efforts can be truncated. You need will to be perseverant. The more time you invest on taking pictures, your skills are going to be more valuable. Shoot frequently. Your motto should be “Insist, persist and never desist”. All this with a touch of confidence will make you feel like a photographer.
Follow this advices and your journey will be filled with self-satisfaction. You will look into the mirror and will say to yourself: “Look, is the photographer I was looking for”.
Article by Gabriel Mata Guzmán