Photography: Basic Rules to Follow as a Beginner

Photography has evolved; it’s no longer restricted to the aim of saving memories for the future. Now, it is an art that heals the mind, and each frame can give an immense satisfaction when captured properly. There are many reasons why you may want to become a professional photographer, but whatever your reason might be, it is important to have a perfect knowledge of the field of photography, and what it truly entails.  Well, the professional photographers you know were not born with the knowledge of how to take a good photo, they learned it first by following rules, then by shaping the rules and breaking some of them at the right moments.

This article would provide you with a number of rules you should follow as a beginner, in order to have a great career in photography.

Basic Photography Rules

Right Timing

Choosing the right time to take a picture is the most important rule in photography. This depends on the desired memory to be captured. For instance, nature photography is best done during the golden hour. For projects that portray energy and productivity, like building construction or soldiers’ parade, midday hour’s snaps are more suitable. Night snap with appropriate lighting and aesthetics favors romantic, spy and crime memories.

Proper Location

For every picture you intended to take, there exists a perfect location for it. How would the picture of a newlywed romantic couple beside a dump ground look? Awkward right? What if the couple were snapped beside a flowing river, with colorful birds hoping between ever-budding trees? Choosing the right location is a key to capturing the desired memory and making it natural. Hair models in the saloon, ammunition at demo sites, soldiers in the jungle, doctors in clinics, and so on. The importance of a great location cannot be over emphasized.

Accurate Lighting

Science did taught us that light for our eyes to see clearly, there is the need for light right? Well the same applies to cameras. Light is what gives your camera the liberty to snap, as a photographer. It is important to stand with your source of light, with the light rays falling on your subject parallel to your camera’s beam of focus. In outdoor photography where  the main source of light is sunlight, you should consider where the sun is, then direct your subject towards the rays. In still life photography – when subjects are immobile- you should opt for the time when sunlight falls and gives the perfect lighting. In indoor photography where sunlight is not pronounced, the light source should be justifiably maneuvered to suit the desired memory. Aside from setting up light stands, reflectors might also be used to direct the light rays to the subject.

Subject Focus

The subject is what your photography attention is given to. It can be a human, animal, plant, building, street, name them. Whatever your subject is, you should use the rule of thirds to make it the center of focus. In the rule of thirds, you imaginarily  divide your field by two horizontal and two vertical lines giving nine sections, the points at which the lines meet are where your focal points of the subject should be.

Another way of subject focusing is by blurring the background to eliminate unnecessary attractions, leaving the subject the only clear figure around which the viewers’ attention must be on. This is known as depth of field.

Having started with the above rules, you should also know that photography is a fluid art, and you may need to break the rules sometimes as the situation demands. After all, no rule is made to remain unbroken! However, you are at liberty to break rules only after mastering them for your transformation from beginner to a professional photographer.