Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Trying To Improve My Photography Skills

I was looking back over my list of goals for 2011 this morning and while I have made progress in some areas, there are other items I am yet to work on. I am about three quarters of the way through Grace's album of baby photos and I have plans to learn to crochet (I would love to create a throw rug for the nursery) but I am yet to work on improving my photography skills.

Now that we have a DSLR, my photos should technically be better quality. However, I lack the knowledge about lighting and the way to use my camera in manual mode to achieve the perfect shot. I took the two photos on this post earlier in the week when I was playing around in the sunshine one morning with our camera, but I found I still had to adjust the lightness and darkness of them in a photo program afterwards.

I've decided over the next few weeks to actually sit down with the camera manual and see what I can learn. I also saw this book which I am tempted to order as it has some good reviews. Does anyone know of any good online resources for photography tips or can anyone recommend any good (and simple) photography books?


  1. Such cute pics of Gracie, she has the sweetest bright smile doesn't she! I'll email you the link to this cool tips guide which I thought was really clever. I'm playing around with my new DSLR too and wish I was better at it. Your garden is looking as gorgeous as usual. Your frangipani tree is still looking bright, ours is loosing it's leaves already :( Have a great evening/afternoon my dear,

  2. Hi Amanda, I saw some photography tips on a beach cottage and on a link from sense and sensibility I am pretty sure. They were quite good. Gosh, Grace has shot up, I like her cheeky grin.

  3. Amanda, you have a gorgeous subject there - beautiful pics of Grace (and your garden too). I got my DSLR from hubby about 5 min before having Lily :) Had no idea what I was doing and zero interest in reading the manual. Just like highschool maths. A friend said that instead of reading the whole boring book, I should get my head around the relationship between ISO, aperture and shutter speed (helps to take several photos of the same subject, changing your settings each time and noticing the little differences), learn the 'Rule of Thirds' and the basics of composition. Those techie things did help (once they sunk in), along with advice from inspiring blogs like Mocking Bird:

    Hope that helps :)

    Paula x

  4. I wish I had some tips to share Amanda but I feel a bit the same myself, occasionally I shoot in manual mode but I still don't fully understand what is what. On the plus side the way I do shoot, in P mode usually just fiddling with the white balance seems to work ok and I don't adjust my pics with programs at all but I would love to know more so I think the book you have linked to looks perfect. Your photographs always look beautiful tho : )

  5. I have just recently started using a DSLR and they are very confusing pieces of equipment! I find that playing with white balance (not just relying on the auto setting) and adjusting the exposure compensation work wonders! Also, just keep taking pictures. Take a hundred pictures of the same thing if you have to and keep altering the settings every few frames and you'll eventually see what works and what doesn't in each setting.... photography books can be good - but I think hands on is best. Practice makes perfect after all.

    Good luck :)

    x claire

  6. I was going to give you a list of resources, but if you just go to my main page, scroll down the right hand column to "Inspiring Me' you'll find a few photography resources. The Beyond Snapshots course is the best thing ever - it's the course I did and it's so worth the money - you will learn everything you need to know. They have a more budget friendly course option now too.

    Ashley Ann at Under the Sycamore sometimes posts tutorials for photography - if you look under her tab Post Categories-Snap Shops and Tips.

    I tried reading the manual and got out books from the library, but the best way to learn (in my humble opinion).

    Have fun!


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