Tips by Dawn

Check here for quick tips and ideas on how to take better pictures!  This page will be updated over time, so check often...  *I am posting this tips from the bottom up, so if you want to read them in order, start with the last one.  :)

~Look for inspiration in magazines.  If you are feeling stuck, spend some time perusing the pictures around you.~Get down (or up!) to eye level.  Unless you are purposely trying for a unique angle, eye level makes your subject more appealing and makes the viewer feel more connected to your subject.
~Use what you have.  When I can't get out, I find objects around the house to photograph.  Often, they have meaning to me, so the photos are that much better for it.
~Unless it's quite dark, natural light is best, so turn off your flash for beautiful pictures.
~Pick a random word, then try to represent it in a photograph. 
~Organize.  There's nothing like taking out a stack of photos and placing them in beautiful albums to refresh your creativity.  We have a tendency to leave them as digital files, but they are meant to be shared!
~Create a challenge for yourself.  That's what I'm doing (see "I Need to Expand My Horizons" post).  Like anything, we tend to rest in our comfort zone.  Give yourself a goal to photograph something you are not naturally drawn to, and see how it can open your eyes.
~Carry a notebook.  I keep one in my purse.  Any time I think of something to take pictures of, or come across a place that I can return to later, I write it down in my notebook.
~Go shopping!  Seriously.  When I have exhausted the subjects in my home, I head to the dollar store or the nearest flower shop.  Endless possibilities, there.
~Look for shapes.  Even natural items have a shape to them:  Mountains as triangles; flowers as circles; and trees as long, skinny rectangles.
~Think in 3's!  Photos where the subject is placed following the "Rule of Thirds" (Google this and you'll find loads of info) are generally more appealing.
~Keep your eyes open.  Photo opportunites are everywhere.
~The best times for photographing outside are earlier in the morning or later in the day/evening.  The light is softer and shadows less harsh.
~ Check your background.  Always, always pay attention to what is behind/around your subject.  It can make or break your photo.  If there is something in there you don't like, move your subject if you can.  If you can't, get closer (see below).
 ~ Get closer!  This is my motto when making photos:  If you can get closer to the subject, do it.  You'll be able to clear out any unwanted background that way, and it makes your subject truly stand out.

For more quick tips that you can take on your photo outings, here is a
great little booklet I created.  It hooks onto your camera bag,
or anywhere else you'd like, for quick access to tips about different photography situations.
For more great tips more often, check out my Twitter page @dawnblanchard.

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