When I first got serious about photography I bought a Nikon D80 with several lenses. I took a few photographic classes and learned a little about composition, lighting and the basic functions of a camera including aperture, shutter, ISO, and white balance.
After the classes I rarely used the Auto function and usually programmed my photos. Since I am unable to stand for long periods of time, I slowly started using the Auto function more and more. I really didn’t notice a huge difference in my photography. I concentrated my energy on developing my eye for photography and creating my own artistic style.
Almost any camera manufactured in the last five years is fairly smart. On auto mode, it knows how to adjust aperture, ISO and shutter speeds to take a good picture. It’s up to you to compose the scene to set up an artistic image. A good beginning image is critical.
Here is a trick I learned about aperture, which is what gives your photo a sharp focus in one area and a soft in other areas. Pay attention to the focal points through your view finder or on your screen. The little boxes mean that part of your photo will be in sharp focus. Anything close to that same depth of field will also be in focus. That is why many times you will see more than one little box. The trick is to change your camera angle just a little and the your points of focus will change. By playing around with the focal points you are changing the auto function of the aperture.
Getting back to the main point of this post, the first thing my photography instructor said was if you have a lousy composition there is nothing you can do with a photo to make it artistic and pretty. If the composition is good, you can create wonderful pieces of art. I took that to heart.
Next Few Weeks
Travel Tales of Life who has a wonderful photographic eye asked for some advice on some cool photos she took of totem poles she took near Vancouver BC, Canada. I worked on four of her photos over the next few weeks you will discover and learn how cropping and editing can make an already great photo turn into art work. So your homework assignment is to check out her post.
Have a great week everyone.
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