Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Resolutions for Photographers

The title is taken from an article in the PCWorld magazine I read this morning. I am reproducing the tips here because they are actually what I have been doing for the past one year:

- Turn off Auto.
It was an unplanned move for me, but over the past one year I found myself using the Manual mode more and more, especially for flash-assisted photography. It gives the exposure more consistency.

- Edit and share your images.
Lightroom makes editing an entire day's shooting very easily. My workflow typically takes less than an hour from transferring out the images to my computer, edit in Lightroom, and upload to Facebook. Facebook is excellent for sharing lots of images after an event. It is easy to post an entire folder of images, edit captions, and allows viewers to post comments easily. I have recently started doing that and I am sure my friends appreciate it.

- Learn to note shutter speed.
Not only that, I have also learned to take note of the exposure indicator in the viewfinder. I have been using that very often since I started to use the manual mode more and more.

- Stop thinking a new piece of gear is going to make you a better photographer.
It's a mindset change. I have stopped looking at new lenses and camera since I bought my 24-70 f2.8 lens (which is still under-utilized). On the other hand, I have gained new respect for my studio accessories.

- Commit to practising.
I agree with what the author says: it's the only thing that will make you a better photographer. I take every opportunity to shoot at parties and outings. I feel I have improved through this, and still have much to learn.

- Study the work of photographers.
I think I need to do more in this area. I have also started to read up about paintings. It helps to see what make a painting work, and apply that to photography.

- Don't use a regular flash outside. Use slow sync flash.
This is something new for me to work at.

- Learn to use a camera's flash compensation.
I have done that, and I have also learned to use the exposure compensation regularly. This has worked wonders in improving my exposure control more than anything I have tried.

The article has several other useful tips. To read this article, go to:

Happy New Year!

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