Digital Photography and the common mistakes of beginners
When you’re learning how to do anything, you’re bound to make mistakes along the way, and digital photography is no exception. Luckily, those of us who have spent years learning the ropes of shooting digital photography already know there are some common mistakes beginner photographers often make that can be easily avoided with a bit of prior knowledge. Here are eight of the most common technical mistakes beginner photographers make, from image blur to overlooked composition:
- The missed Focus. If you’re using autofocus and letting the camera choose your focus points, it’s highly likely you will focus on the wrong part of your image frame from time to time, especially when using a shallow depth of field. This is something that’s either impossible or difficult to fix after the fact, so it’s important to nail your focus in the field.
- The shaky Frame. If your photos are turning out blurry or slightly unsharp and you’re not sure why, it’s probably because you are using too slow of a shutter speed. When your shutter speed is too slow, the shaking of your camera can reduce the sharpness of your image.
- The buried Exposure. While shooting in RAW gives you a lot of latitude to adjust your exposure in post-processing, there are definitely limits on what you can do. If your exposure is too dark, the shadows will be grainy and discolored when you bring them up in processing. If your exposure is too bright, your highlights will be blown out and the detail won’t be recoverable when processing.
- The awkward Pose. As most people you will be working with likely won’t be professional models, they probably won’t feel all that comfortable posing. And while it’s great to find poses online and try them, people will probably feel awkward just being told how to stand, which will come through in your digital photography. Your best bet is to use the poses as basic guidelines and then focus on putting your subjects at ease by engaging them with eye contact and friendly banter, while encouraging them to have fun and be themselves.
- Tree growing from Heads. An easy way to ruin a good portrait photo is to have a vertical object such as a tree or telephone pole sticking straight up out of your subject’s head. While you will very likely be focusing most of your attention on your subject’s pose and appearance, it’s key to also pay attention to the background.
- Confusing Composition. Figuring out how to arrange the elements in your camera’s frame can take some time. When you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s easy to create a dog’s breakfast composition that will cause the viewer to become completely lost and confused when looking at your photo.
- Overzealous Processor. When you’re first learning to do post processing on images, it can be easy to get so excited that you overdo it. One common mistake beginners in digital photography often make when processing is adding too much saturation and sharpening to images, which results in photos that look overdone and totally unrealistic.
- The file backup Fail. One of the dangers of digital photography is the potential for technology to fail, and this includes the hard drive on which you store your image files. If you only have one copy of your image files stored, and the drive where they are stored fails, there go all your image files.