5 Tips to Take Better, More Interesting Pictures

Singapore is brimming with photographic potential – but that potential is only available to you if you know how to look. Here are five tips that you can use to take better pictures:

1. Study the light closely.
Where is your light source coming from? Is it from the sun or from an artificial light source, like a lamp?
How does the light interact with the foreground and background? With the subject? What kind of shadow is cast? If the light makes harsh shadows on your subjects, break out the flash to make an even exposure.

What time of day are you shooting? If you’re shooting at midday, you might want to set a lower ISO on your camera to keep the quality, and a higher ISO if you’re shooting at night or in a dimly-lit place.

2. Get friendly with your subjects.
When you’re taking portraits of people (especially in street photography), be sure to ask for permission first out of respect to the person that you want to use as a subject, as things can – and often do – get ugly for you if you don’t.

It doesn’t hurt to smile or shake hands and show them the image once you’ve taken it, and a well-timed joke will always give you a more natural smile. You’ll be amazed at how easily people will open up to you if you do this.

3. Break the rule of thirds.
Though the rule of thirds serves as a great guide for taking more engaging photos, you don’t have to be limited by keeping your subjects to the side of the grid. For example, you can focus your subject on the center, if you happen to set your eyes on something astonishingly symmetrical.

4. Splurge on books instead of gear.
While having more specialized equipment can let you take better shots, they’re only good if you know how to use them well. Many stunning images have been taken with nothing more than a smartphone – all it takes is a good eye, and good eyes are honed with time and practice.

Instead of having different kinds of lenses, spend your budget on different photography books – studying the works of masters is a good way to inspire you and develop your eye for a good shot.

5. Shoot every day.
There’s no better way to improve your skill than by practicing, and what better practice is there than to just go out into the world to experiment and have fun? After going about taking pictures, be sure to study the images that you took to see how you could improve in certain areas.

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