Modern Photography/Hints and Tips
- People knowing being photographed (and not being used to that) tend to appear “tense” in the final picture. One way to alleviate that a bit is to shoot a series of pictures in short succession: The first one being a “throw-away picture” just to relieve the subject of some tension, the second and following being the pictures you actually want to consider as the right one.
- Sometimes (during daytime) you want to isolate an object in a heavily frequented place: Do a long-time exposure, this will eliminate pedestrians and cars passing through (unless, of course, they stand for too long at one spot).
- If you plan to take a picture with a celestial object appearing low on the horizon, look up the weather forecast for the location 30, 40 miles in the direction of this object. While it may be a clear sky right above your head, (high-altitude) clouding in the distance may thwart your plan.
- Have a towel with you. Not only The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy recommends you to always carry a towel with you, but so do we: If you are photographing in the morning, especially in fog, or whenever there is a high relative humidity, condensation water will gather on your equipment. You may want to wipe that away. Also, you can use the towel as a cushion, e. g. to wrap your tripod or other items that are not too sensitive to moisture.
- Related to the previous point: Bag your equipment in resealable (transparent) plastic bags.
If you are not using a flash and doing a long-time exposure:
- If you want trees’ twigs and leaves to appear sharp, ensure the weather forecast predicts no wind.
- If you are using a camera system with a replaceable viewfinder, use the brightest viewfinder you have available.
- Remember to take a flashlight with you. If it is permissible, you can illuminate the scene to check the frame.
- Your eyes need time to adapt to the darkness. Take account of that time and arrive on location earlier, just for the sake of that if you are not already planning to re-scout the area anyway.
When focusing on a shot, it is easy to forget your surroundings and accidentally move into a dangerous position. This is especially important in a number of situations such as:
- Near a cliff.
- Near traffic, especially automobiles, but even cyclists or pedestrian traffic can be dangerous.
- Near bodies of water.
- Near expensive objects. Think of Art museums, industrial machinery, etc.