In this article I will tell you the most basic concept of photography which is the importance of light. This will help you take great pictures with any camera or smart phone!
Know the light!
When I say know the light it means see how is light conditions and direction and amount. Light is the most important thing in photography and it can make a photo look great or absolutely useless! Sure there are other things like composition and subject, but for beginners, light is the most important thing. This may seem complicated at first but with a little bit of practice you should be able to master this concept and believe me it is enough for most!
Here are 2 main concepts about light:
- know the direction of light
- Know the intensity of light. (a bit hard)
know the Direction of light
This is relatively easy, just look at the direction of light and where is light source ( say sun ) and take pictures with your back to light, and subjects toward the light. This is sometimes not possible like when sun is so bright and it may irritate eyes of subject so you can pose them with 45 degrees toward sun.
The important thing here is that often people want a particular background and don’t consider light at all, so what they reach is something like this:
As you can see because the light source is behind the subject, we have whats called a silhouette image and face of person is so dark. Here we have 2 solutions, first is to use a powerful flash and second is to use HDR mode that is present in some decent smartphones. either way the result will not be so good so just avoid it!
know the intensity of light
What I mean by this is to be able to identify light source’s amount of light. for example sun is the most power full light source and smart phone flash or any normal flash is less powerful. As I said this is hard and there are even devices called light-meter to tell you how much is light intensity. The reason that I think you should pay attention for this is that when you have more than one light source, you should consider the most powerful one and pose your subject accordingly.
Find reflections for great shots
You can identify how light is reflected from different surfaces, say when you see a big white wall in the street and sun is shining on it, you can use that nice reflected light to take beautiful photos.
You can also use artificial light sources of stores in the street at night! This is my favorite when strolling at night. What your achieve will surprise you!
See how I used a street light to illuminate my subject:
Finally I hope you enjoyed reading ” how to take great pictures ” and can take great pictures of your next trip! If you have any questions, just ask them bellow and I will be glad to answer.
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