For this week’s video, I’ve compiled several of my favorite tips to help photographers take better pictures. I made sure to focus on the basics, but there’s plenty of good information here regardless of your skill level.
We’ve covered many of these before in our photography tips for beginners and intermediate photography tips articles. If you prefer reading rather than watching, you’ll find those links very useful.
That said, I think the video format suits some of these tips quite well, and the whole thing comes in under 10 minutes, so naturally I recommend watching :)
If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below, or in the Youtube comments section (which, as I understand it, Youtube takes into account slightly when ranking the video).
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Thank you so much for this video, Spencer. Your tips are very useful and I`ve reached to some of them myself while practicing with my camera. Couple of months ago I upgraded from Nikon D3300 to Nikon D7500 and started taking photography more seriously since the new camera has more capabilities and opens more room for creative ideas. I started with Bryan Peterson`s book Understanding Exposure.
Photographylife.com is amazing website. I learn so many new things from you guys. I really appreciate you sharing your knowledge with us.
Keep doing the outstanding work you do!
Thank you, Vasil, I appreciate the kind feedback!
Another great video, Spencer. Well done!
Nasim talks about file naming, too. What difference does it make what I name my files? They’re in different folders on my hard drive, and LR knows where they live. Is the filename even relevant? Why?
Thank you, Chris!
If your identically named photos are in different folders, nothing will be overwritten. The issue is if you merge folders and inadvertently have two files with the same name in them. In that case, it’s easy to accidentally click “replace” on the prompt that pops up, and you may not be able to reverse it. Especially if you don’t immediately realize what you did.
You increase the odds of something going wrong if you shoot with multiple cameras that share the same naming structure, or if you have a general folder for any TIFFs, PSDs, etc. that you’re working on.
So admittedly it takes a couple things going wrong in order for this to overwrite your data. But given how easy it is to batch rename your photos in Lightroom (and have a non-repeating import template), there’s no reason not to do so.
This article covers it a bit more in detail:
Spencer, congratulations, very good, no-nonsense tips and advice!
May I add something about security? Follow the 3-2-1 Rule: have at least 3 copies of your photos, on at least 2 distinct media, and 1 must be remote to ensure disaster resistance (theft, fire, flood, etc.).
Thank you, Pierre! Photographers who heed the 3-2-1 rule are doing things the right way, absolutely. Thanks for adding this.
Spencer, good tips and I enjoy your videos. You are a natural on video. I hope you plan to progress to more advanced subjects. Regarding tripods, I’d like to find a lightweight but sturdy one for travel. Here’s the kicker: most “travel” tripods are too short. I’m not that tall, 6′, but I don’t want to bend over to view my image in the viewfinder, or extend the center column to unstable heights. I’m hoping your astute audience will have some suggestions.
A travel tripod option is the new offering from Peak Design
Thank you, Gary! There is an unavoidable compromise when buying a tripod: lightweight, sturdy, inexpensive. Pick any two.
If you want lightweight and inexpensive, the MeFoto line is my recommendation. They’re good tripods for the price, and they’re probably the tallest you’ll find in a travel tripod (tripods get exponentially heavier as they get taller, no way around that).
If you want lightweight and sturdy, Gitzo and RRS both have travel tripod lines that are extremely well made, lightweight, and fairly tall. But they are priced accordingly, in the $600-$1000 range.
Thanks for the tips guys…I will start to look at lightweight options…and maybe rule out the beanbag! Your publication continues to be my goto source and I thank you and Nasim for your honest and easy to understand essay’s!
Great tips Spencer. Keep up the video’s, very useful information and reminders! I am debating about tip 5, tripod use. Although I agree with the need, I am having a hard time deciding whether or not to lug this around our upcoming trip to Ireland. It’s not a top end tripod, Optex, Trident TD160, but it fits my price range and it is descent. Talked to one fellow who takes a “beanbag” on his travels instead and although it has obvious limitations, a DSLR can be positioned and somewhat secured in place, providing you have a half level surface. Primitive I know. Any other suggestions? I do use a camera backpack that holds a tripod, but have found it bulky and have wacked more than 1 person with it unintentionally!
Have you considered this for traveling?
SIRUI 3T-35 Table Top
Tim, there are plenty of great travel tripods out there. I would get something very small and lightweight to start.
Thank you, Tim! If your trip to Ireland is only tangentially for photography, bringing a tripod may not be worthwhile. It depends on your goal. I looked up the tripod you mention – the TP160 is somewhat on the heavy side, but not so much that a travel tripod would be leaps and bounds more convenient, in my opinion. A tabletop tripod like Dmitry mentions would be more flexible than a beanbag and might be the right compromise for a non-photography specific trip.
If photography is an important goal for your trip, I’d definitely bite the bullet and bring along your full tripod kit.