Creating awesome images isn’t about the gear you have. Your camera is just a tool and the best camera is the one you have with you. The tool that’s available to capture your story in that moment. You are the creator and now you can begin to capture awesome images anywhere with these simple yet powerful techniques that have been used for centuries to convey impactful visual storytelling. Because photography is a reflection of life itself, these tips will help you not only discover great photo-ops, they will help you understand how elements of everyday life are the most important aspect of creating interesting images.
These tips are so simple in fact, that they may seem obvious at first. That’s the beauty of it. These techniques are often overlooked they are so easy. All we have to do is take time to intentionally create the story we want to share. Though there are many different tips I could share, these are the best ones for creating an interesting image instantly, every time. Each one builds on the last, helping you to build your story as your experience unfolds.
Here are my top 10 Photography Tips For Awesome Images
1. Notice With All 5 Senses
Our five physical senses bring us directly into the present moment. This is the most important place to be. Learning to use our full body awareness by acknowledging what we see, hear, smell, taste, and touch, gives us a broader sense of what’s really going on around us. This sets the stage for all the possibilities to come. Now your story can unfold organically because you have expanded your awareness and you are ready.
2. See the Direction of Light
Photography is simply painting with light. Without light, we can not photograph. So pay attention to it. Where is it coming from? What is it hitting that is interesting to you? It will tell us what we are naturally curious about. The light will lead us into our story instantly. Now you can focus on finding a subject.
3. Discover Your Hero
Your hero is your main character. The focal point in your story. It doesn’t have to be the biggest thing in your frame. It just has to be significant. You decide how the rest of the scene will bring your hero into focus. For now, just discover and start to study your hero.
4. Catch the Color
Color conveys feelings and emotion. When we identify the colors in our scene, we can emphasize them to emphasize a specific emotion. What colors are you curious about? How do they relate to your hero? How do they play with the light?
5. Change Your Perspective
We all experience life between four and seven feet off the ground. The easiest way to be unique is to get out of that perspective. Move around your subject and throughout your scene to change your perspective often. Let your story change with each frame as you move closer or further, look up and down, come from different vantage points to catch a different viewpoint of your story.
6. Rule of Thirds
We read from left to right, top to bottom. An image can be composed the same way. If you break your frame into three squares across and down (tic-tac-toe style), the goal is to put your focal point outside of the center square. Instead, place subjects within the intersections of the outer squares.
This is just the opposite of Rule of Thirds. Using symmetry conveys power and intensity as your frame is evenly composed on both sides. Think of symmetry like folding your frame in half. Are both halves really similar? You have created symmetry.
8. Fill Your Frame
The closer you physically get, the bigger your subjects will look. Filling your frame means to literally fill your viewfinder with only what matters, no extra anything. This creates intimacy and leaves a feeling of mystery behind. By pulling your frame closer and cutting off the edges, you can give a viewer the sense that they are right there inside the image.
9. Look For Lines, Patterns, & Textures
Everywhere you look, you will see patterns. Life is full of them. Leading lines and textures are also everywhere. When we become aware of these natural elements that structure our surroundings we can incorporate them for immediate impact. This adds depth to any image, instantly drawing in the viewer’s attention.
10. See Silhouettes, Shadows, & Reflections
A Silhouette is when the subject is underexposed (dark) and they are in front of the light source. Essentially with this technique, you are exposing for the light, not the subject itself. Similarly, shadows also tend to be dark. Our eyes don’t always recognize shadows, but they are everywhere we look. That’s because our eyes are automatically trained to focus on the subject, that is creating the shadows. Reflections are also everywhere but our eyes don’t always recognize them. Anywhere that there is a wet surface or shiny surface, you will find a reflection. Water, puddles, lakes, ice, metal, windows, etc. Bring your lens close to any reflective surface and watch your whole world change!
Though we don’t naturally pay attention to them, silhouettes, shadows, and reflections are very impactful in visual storytelling. They are bold, naturally high contrasting images and offer an ethereal, mysterious story, which helps to create an emotional connection to a scene where other elements can not.
BONUS TIP: Combine different techniques above.
The more of these tips you can bring into a single image, the more you can create an interesting image instantly. If you have trouble remembering these tips, feel free to bookmark this page on your home screen and follow us for more great resources. You can subscribe to the blog below! As you practice, I encourage to you remember one thing. you don’t have to memorize anything. You don’t have to be right every time. It’s good to learn from our mistakes and as you practice each of these techniques, let it simply expand your awareness of your surroundings, and let your curiosity lead the way. Be open to your imagination running wild into visual stories you didn’t even see before! Practice, practice, practice, and ALWAYS enjoy the moment!