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Getting Started in Photography

So, you’ve bought yourself a camera and want to get started in photography. Well, good for you.

Photography can be tremendous fun and, whether you simply want to shoot a few family snaps or have plans to capture life through a lens in all its Technicolor glory, it’s pretty easy to get started.

Despite what some experts might tell you, there are no hard and fast rules about photography which is perhaps why it’s such a popular pastime. That said, there are a few hints and tips that could help you make the most out of your newfound hobby.

Know Your Equipment

You don’t have to be an ber-geek and know all the ins, outs and exact specifications of your new kit to get started with it, but it does help if you know how your camera works.

We’re not just talking about here’s the on button, here’s the button I press to take a picture’ either. Though that’s definitely useful and, let’s face it, you’re unlikely to get very far without that piece of know-how.

No, what we really mean here is to explore all the different options and settings.

Get to know how things look when shot in different settings, experiment with speeds and lighting and all the other wonderful little pieces. It helps if you’ve got your manual to hand but, if not, who cares? Just pick up your camera and play around.

Once you’ve got to grips with what everything does you’ll be in a much better position to start taking better photographs.

Come out and Play

Photography is a creative medium and, as such, there really is no end to the things you can do with it. Get out there and use your camera, try out different subjects and locations and try to think about what works and what doesn’t.

Once you’ve done yet, get some practice in. Take what’s working for you and find ways to improve on it.

Find Your Niche

This isn’t essential, and it could be that you simply want to enjoy shooting anything and everything. However, you may find you get better results if you find your niche.

It could be as simple as combining your new love for photography with an existing passion.

Enjoy live music? Adore nature? Interested in architecture? All of these can make fascinating subjects for photography, and chances are that if you’re taking pictures of something you already know a great deal about, you’ll have a better understanding of how to capture them just right.

Read a Book or Two

There are probably as many books on photography as there are photographers in the world. Explore your local library or book shop and find ones that appeal to you; whether that’s an epic tome detailing all there is to know about photography, or more specific titles such as how to photograph animals’, Using Lightning in Photography’ or books of a similar ilk.

Join a Club

You’ll probably find that a dedicated photography club exists somewhere in your area. Contact them and enquire about joining up, then head along to their meetings.

You’ll be able to meet loads of people who are more than happy to pass on hints, tips and advice to improve your photography. You never know, you may even impress them with some of your own shots.

Keep a Portfolio

You don’t have to, but wouldn’t it be nice if you had a book or file at home that you could pick up and flick through? You could quite easily just use a normal photo album for this.

Share them online.

Join websites like Flickr (www.flickr.com), post your photos and let us all see what you’ve come up with!