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Reasons why your photos suck and what you can do about it

Here’s everything you need to know

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Image: Pixels

If you are trying to improve your photography, then it does help to know where you are going wrong. If you can pinpoint your weaknesses or your mistakes, then this will help you to take photos that are much more refined and it will also help you to really get the hang of things too.

Bad Lighting

If you are taking photos on a compact camera then there’s a high chance that you are having to deal with bad lighting from time to time. Lighting is key if you want to take a good photo. Flashes tend to cast a harsh light on your subject, which tends to flatten the image.

If you want to get around this, then you need to focus on an “off camera flash”. This is when you rotate the flash so that it is aimed at the wall or even the ceiling. This will give you much more natural light and it will also cast shadows over the subject, where they would be naturally. This gives the subject much more depth and makes the photo look much more natural in general.

You Are Making Excuses

If you often go on walks, then you may notice that there are always opportunities for you to take photos. If you never have the right lens on you, then you may say to yourself that you’ll take the shot next time instead. You should try and avoid this if possible.

Take the shot anyway because you never know, it may end up being a stronger picture than you’d think. If you don’t have the right lens then try and get some other interesting features in the shot instead. By adopting this approach, you can give yourself a challenge while also putting an end to your excuses.

Having the Wrong Balance of White

White balance is super important if you want to make your image look natural. If you have the wrong white balance, then you may find that your color cast is nasty and that your skin color looks unnatural.

One common example of this would be if you are shooting under tungsten light. This can make your skin color appear almost orange, but having the right balance of white can help you to overcome this issue.

Motion Blur

Shooting in low-light conditions requires you to make compromises. You may need to use a high ISO in this instance, which is fine. One compromise that you should never make however, is motion blur. Motion blur will render any photo you take, absolutely unusable.

You need to make sure that you raise the shutter speed so that it is equal to your focal length. If you are choosing a 50mm lens and you have a crop sensor, then your focal length would be 75mm so therefore, your shutter speed should be 1/75.

Poor Depth of Field

When people pick up their first f/1.8 lens, they tend to put it on their camera and just leave it there. Poor depth of field does come with some creative applications, but it doesn’t belong in every single photo you take. Your photographs will begin to look the same and they also won’t be as impressive either.

If you have too much depth of field then this can also work against you. Ideally, you need to make sure that you are finding a compromise between the two, so you are never screwing up fantastic photos because of one simple mistake.

If you are a beginner then it may be wise for you to start taking photos with your phone, as this is the best way for you to take photos on the go. It also gives you the chance to experiment with light, angles, and depth of field, without the complexity. Check out this iPhone photography blog if you want to find out more.

Taking Pictures at the Wrong Time

Shooting in the early morning when the sun is low will give you way better photos when compared to shooting in the midday sun. The main reason for this is because during the day, you may find that your photos appear harsh and bright.

If you are finding it hard to capture a scene that looks good in the day then this may be because your eyes are able to adjust to the exposure, but your camera can’t. Shooting in the evening will remove silhouettes and it will give you much more exposure.

Having too Many Distractions

Believe it or not, anything that does not add to a photo, takes away from it. Think about the photo you are taking and what’s being added to it before you proceed with the shot. If you have distractions, then make sure that you alter the angle so that you can make the shot much more interesting overall.

You’re Trying too Hard to Impress

You have to make sure that you shoot what you want, rather than what you think other people will like. If you are continually trying to please others, then you may find it very difficult to become content with the progress you are making, and you may even find that you end up hindering your journey overall. If you want to put an end to this then think about the reason why you started to take photos and revisit your roots.

Bad Composition

If you are not at all familiar with the art of composition, then it’s wise for you to try and follow the rule of thirds. Your image should be a third of the way in, both horizontally and vertically. Photos on Facebook tend to be framed very badly. You may have a group photo with tons of dead space above, or to the side of the image and this can really bring the image down.

If you want to stop this, then you need to make sure that you focus on composition if possible. You also need to make sure that you think hard about what you want in the photo, so you can wait for the moment to capture what you truly want.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Chris has been blogging since the early days of the internet. He primarily focuses on topics related to tech, business, marketing, and pretty much anything else that revolves around tech. When he's not writing, you can find him noodling around on a guitar or cooking up a mean storm for friends and family.

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