Taking a picture is easy; point at the subject, press the shutter and click; you have a picture. Maybe you do something with that picture, print it at the local corner store, email it to a friend, store it on your computer or simply forget it is there and wipe it from the memory card. See, photography is easy!
Well it is, if that is all you want to do with your camera and if so, then that is fine. Problem is, that is not what a lot of people want to do. They want to be able to capture a scene, be it a warm, golden sunset across the mountains or soft flowing waves breaking over a rock in a magical slow-motion vista of coastal beauty. They don’t want to just capture the scene, they want to capture it as they see it and feel it.
So they take their new mega-mega pixels camera out and find a beautiful scene. Carefully they put the camera to their eye and carefully press the shutter. They feel good about what they have done; happy that they are starting their journey into being a good photographer.
Then back home they open the images on their computer and bang! What they see wasn’t the beautiful scene they just photographed; the light isn’t sparkling on the water and what has happened to the Blue Bells, they are purple!
It is a common story; one that is happening every week and producing disappointment in numerous budding photographers. However, the real disappointment is the number of people who give up at this point; the people who say I can’t do this; my pictures just don’t work… This is a loss to photography and a loss to someone who had taken the first steps to learning a new hobby that who knows where it may have taken them.
If you recognise yourself, then please take some advice from me; do not give up. You have done the hardest bit; you have started on a journey and as they say, the hardest part of a journey is taking that first step.
Yes, your first pictures are nothing special, but you wouldn’t expect them to be. After that first step, you have to practice, you have to keep at it; taking that first step on a journey doesn’t get you to the destination; you need step after step after step.
So what do you need to do? You need to understand why your images don’t look how you expected them. You have to learn how your camera works; what composition is; how light affects your images; when to use different apertures or different shutter speeds; how to critic your photographs and other people’s photographs; how to receive criticism and not be offended by it; what are RAW files and why you should use them. Basically there are lots of things to learn, but be assured that by practicing, your skill in this art will develop and you will quickly be many steps further into that journey.