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5 Common Photography Mistakes and How to Fix Them

5 Common Photography Mistakes and How to Fix Them

You may not be a professional photographer, but wouldn’t it be nice to be able to take pictures that look just as amazing? There are ways to do so with a little know-how. Having the ability to take ideal images the first time around, rather than spending time retaking and re-uploading, only to settle for mediocrity can be frustrating. When it comes to how you approach photography, you may be making fairly simple mistakes that you are simply not aware of. Here are five common photography mistakes and how to fix them.

Distorted Photos

You may find that when you upload your photos that they have a distorted look to them. This is because the lens is placed at the widest setting, and oftentimes a wide-angle setting is considered a default setting. When taking portraits, the image will need to be higher than it is wide. When a wide-angle lens is set at default, especially when the subject is taken up close, it can be very unflattering.

Depending on your camera, you may have a portrait setting, or you can simply zoom in to create more of a flattened perspective. If you are using a compact camera that features a digital zoom, zooming in too closely can reduce your image quality. Either move closer to your subject or zoom in only partially to capture the best portrait photos.

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Motion-Blurred Photos

There is a trick to taking crisp, clean photos, even if you don’t have a tripod. Any shake to the camera can cause a distraction and the results will show in the blurry photos you take. Fortunately, a high-quality camera is equipped with the technology to keep camera shake nonexistent, but even if you don’t have the newest in technology, you can make it happen on your own.

Just be sure to raise your shutter speed, keep the camera very still when you take the picture, press the button to activate the shutter, but only press it halfway.[1] This will make the camera lock focus. Also, be sure the object you are taking a picture of isn’t moving, and if it is, then adjust and enable the autofocus feature, which many cameras have. If your camera has a continuous autofocus to capture moving images, this will be an ideal feature to use if your subject is moving.

Red-Eye

Many know the frustration of taking multiple pictures of an event or holiday gathering only to later see your loved ones with glowing, red eyes. Yes, there are picture editing programs to help diminish the red eye; however, sometimes your subjects end up with a tiny black square in the middle of their pupils. In order to avoid having red eye in the first place, you need to avoid having the light from the flash reflect from the eyes and back to the lens.

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This is done by having your subjects look just a little away you’re your camera, rather than straight into the lens. They can look a little off to the side or at the wall behind you. If the angle is larger away from the camera lens, red eye can be avoided. Fortunately, many advanced cameras, or even today’s point and shoot cameras have automatic red eye reduction. Just be sure you know your camera and know how to activate the feature.

No Clear Subject in the Photo

Focus on your subject. Improper focus is one of the reasons why your photos are not sharp.[2] Often, when we snap pictures of people, animals, or objects, we know what we are looking at when we take the image. We also know what we want people to see. However, once the picture is uploaded and others view it, their eyes may be tempted to look at other things in the image, rather than the one thing you focused on. How we see our important subjects in our photos is not how the camera may capture them.

Here is what you can do to ensure you are taking a picture of the one person or thing you want people (or yourself) to notice the most.

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  1. First, get closer.
  2. Avoid trying to capture everything in one photo by standing too far away.
  3. When you move closer to the object or person, look at the background and the sides through your camera and pay attention to what is in the viewfinder.

Too much distraction will take away from the one person or thing you are focused on and want others to focus on once the picture is uploaded.

Not Knowing Your Camera

Every camera has differences and similarities and it is important to know what to look for when buying a camera and understand what each feature entails and how it can work for you in terms of better picture quality. Taking the time to thoroughly read the manual, researching what terms you don’t understand, and practicing taking images by using each feature will really help in the long run. Performing these actions will also give you more confidence when capturing those all-important images without becoming frustrated with less than desirable results.

Taking ideal images, even when starting out with a new camera, takes a little patience, time, and practice. It can be done, though, and it will be time well spent, as you will reap the rewards of having amazing photographs for years to come!

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Featured photo credit: Benjamin Combs via unsplash.com

Reference

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Beth Hedrick

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on May 14, 2019

8 Replacements for Google Notebook

8 Replacements for Google Notebook

Exploring alternatives to Google Notebook? There are more than a few ‘notebooks’ available online these days, although choosing the right one will likely depend on just what you use Google Notebook for.

  1. Zoho Notebook
    If you want to stick with something as close to Google Notebook as possible, Zoho Notebook may just be your best bet. The user interface has some significant changes, but in general, Zoho Notebook has pretty similar features. There is even a Firefox plugin that allows you to highlight content and drop it into your Notebook. You can go a bit further, though, dropping in any spreadsheets or documents you have in Zoho, as well as some applications and all websites — to the point that you can control a desktop remotely if you pare it with something like Zoho Meeting.
  2. Evernote
    The features that Evernote brings to the table are pretty great. In addition to allowing you to capture parts of a website, Evernote has a desktop search tool mobil versions (iPhone and Windows Mobile). It even has an API, if you’ve got any features in mind not currently available. Evernote offers 40 MB for free accounts — if you’ll need more, the premium version is priced at $5 per month or $45 per year. Encryption, size and whether you’ll see ads seem to be the main differences between the free and premium versions.
  3. Net Notes
    If the major allure for Google Notebooks lays in the Firefox extension, Net Notes might be a good alternative. It’s a Firefox extension that allows you to save notes on websites in your bookmarks. You can toggle the Net Notes sidebar and access your notes as you browse. You can also tag websites. Net Notes works with Mozilla Weave if you need to access your notes from multiple computers.
  4. i-Lighter
    You can highlight and save information from any website while you’re browsing with i-Lighter. You can also add notes to your i-Lighted information, as well as email it or send the information to be posted to your blog or Twitter account. Your notes are saved in a notebook on your computer — but they’re also synchronized to the iLighter website. You can log in to the site from any computer.
  5. Clipmarks
    For those browsers interested in sharing what they find with others, Clipmarks provides a tool to select clips of text, images and video and share them with friends. You can easily syndicate your finds to a whole list of sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Digg. You can also easily review your past clips and use them as references through Clipmarks’ website.
  6. UberNote
    If you can think of a way to send notes to UberNote, it can handle it. You can clip material while browsing, email, IM, text message or even visit the UberNote sites to add notes to the information you have saved. You can organize your notes, tag them and even add checkboxes if you want to turn a note into some sort of task list. You can drag and drop information between notes in order to manage them.
  7. iLeonardo
    iLeonardo treats research as a social concern. You can create a notebook on iLeonardo on a particular topic, collecting information online. You can also access other people’s notebooks. It may not necessarily take the place of Google Notebook — I’m pretty sure my notes on some subjects are cryptic — but it’s a pretty cool tool. You can keep notebooks private if you like the interface but don’t want to share a particular project. iLeonardo does allow you to follow fellow notetakers and receive the information they find on a particular topic.
  8. Zotero
    Another Firefox extension, Zotero started life as a citation management tool targeted towards academic researchers. However, it offers notetaking tools, as well as a way to save files to your notebook. If you do a lot of writing in Microsoft Word or Open Office, Zotero might be the tool for you — it’s integrated with both word processing software to allow you to easily move your notes over, as well as several blogging options. Zotero’s interface is also available in more than 30 languages.

I’ve been relying on Google Notebook as a catch-all for blog post ideas — being able to just highlight information and save it is a great tool for a blogger.

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In replacing it, though, I’m starting to lean towards Evernote. I’ve found it handles pretty much everything I want, especially with the voice recording feature. I’m planning to keep trying things out for a while yet — I’m sticking with Google Notebook until the Firefox extension quits working — and if you have any recommendations that I missed when I put together this list, I’d love to hear them — just leave a comment!

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