A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to attend a photography workshop hosted by the incredibly talented Chelsea Davis of Chelsea Davis Photography.
The knowledge I gained from that afternoon was AMAZING. And while I could never teach like Chelsea or possibly share all the info I learned that day, I do have some easy tips that I have learned with her help and practice that can help take your photos up a notch.
TIP #1 – CHANGE YOUR WHITE BALANCE
Seriously! Do it. I had no idea about this setting. While leaving it on auto is great, when I started playing around with my white balance and changing the settings based on my surroundings I was surprised how easy it was to change the quality of my photos.
Once you locate the WB button on your camera, you should find yourself on a screen that looks like this….
In order from left to right they are: Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten Light, White Florescent Light, Flash and custom. Play around with them based on your surroundings and see the difference it makes in your pictures.
TIP #2 – TV MODE
So in the workshop we learned all about shooting in manual mode. I have to say I am really enjoying it too. Sometimes though, for a beginner like myself, I don’t always have time to play with the settings to set up the shot. I have 4 kids who aren’t the most cooperative when it comes to taking pictures, so sometime it is just about getting the shot more than getting the perfect shot. Instead of using full auto though, I have been trying to use TV mode. TV mode allows you to choose your shutter speed, while the camera controls the aperture. This mode is great for quick movements, which makes it easier for my quick kiddos. It gives me the practice I need on my shutter speed settings without giving over all the control to auto.
TIP #3 – AV MODE
AV mode is similar to TV mode in that it doesn’t turn over full control to the camera. AV mode allows you to choose the aperture and the camera chooses your shutter speed. It is again ideal for if you are trying to break free from auto mode, but are still a little intimidated by manual. Because this setting has to do with aperture, your depth of field will be effected. So, if you are photographing your kiddo you would probably want to use a wide aperture so that the subject is in focus and the background is blurred. If you were photographing a landscape you would want a narrow aperture to capture a large depth of field, so pretty much everything before and after your focal point would be in focus.
The next time you are taking pictures, try some of these easy tips. They aren’t full manual and can be less intimidating while still getting big results.
Also, if you are in the Houston area, I highly suggest you check out Chelsea Davis Photography for her next workshop. I promise it will be SO worth it.
And for those of you that aren’t in Houston. There are still lots of amazing resources you can check out to better your photography. First and foremost you should get to know your camera’s user guide and learn all about the settings and what that bad boy can do. Then you can branch out to all the amazing books and online tutorials that are out there. Two of my favorite books are:
Say NO to Auto by Kristen Duke
And becuase I love you guys, I am going to give away a copy of Mamarazzi to one lucky reader. Just enter the Rafflecopter below and a winner will be selected at the end of the week.
Meg O. says
I really ought to play with my White Balance more. I always forget!!! I need to try shooting in TV mode more, too.
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