31 Best Tips to Improve Your Photography

Are you just a week away from boarding the flight to your next destination? Are you planning to explore a place that is not always frequented by the tourists? If yes, then you must know that you are in for some amazing experiences. Are you fond of Indian street food photography? There are amazingly photogenic regions all over the world.

Potentially beautiful photographs exist everywhere all around us. All it takes is a little imagination, a camera, a lens, and a tripod. One special aspect of photography is that you don’t necessarily have to capture a scene on film (or on memory card) exactly the way you see it in person. Cameras do not have to be copy machines.

Are you one of those still wondering how so many of of your peers manage to travel to exotic destinations, get sponsored stays in fabulous hotels and resorts and are all over your Instagram feed?

Using various techniques out in the field i.e. long exposure, depth of field, exaggeration of perspective, manipulation of light can help someone visually depict a particular scene in a way that no one has ever viewed that place before. Almost like creating an alternate reality, but doing so by using only what actually exists in reality…not by adding anything artificial.

That’s the true challenge for a landscape photographer: Using a camera and lens to create a visually unique and compelling scene, using only an otherwise seemingly non-photogenic place to do so.

In other words, one does not need to travel only to famous or rare landmarks to get a great photo. For example, anyone can take a beautiful picture of Machu Picchu with their cell phone, but will it be a picture others have seen a thousand times before? If you posted the photo on the internet, would it stand out from other pictures taken there, or would it blend in amongst the thousands of others?

It’s not WHERE you shoot, and quite often it isn’t WHAT you shoot…what matters is HOW you shoot it. Sometimes, if you look carefully enough, you can find something potentially photogenic right around the corner from your house.

The abundance of raw nature and all its wilderness will be waiting for you to come, visit and leave with a heart full of memories. So, when you are going on a trek to a beautiful place, don't you think of eternalizing the moments? If yes, then you must take a compact hiking camera for travellers with you.

In fact, if you are thinking of spending this vacation in a different way, going for a photography tour with your camera can be a good idea for you. Instead of visiting the places and then thinking of clicking pictures, plan to go for a photography tour, where your urge and interest regarding photography will take you to different places.

Some of our most exciting moments in life come out of travel experiences. This is when we become unhinged from our normal lives, take a break from the monotony of our workweek, and embark on a mysterious and unpredictable journey. These are the moments we want to remember, the moments in which we'll want to capture and keep forever. And below you will find some quick and handy tips for creating a memorable travel video for your next adventure.

But, when you are preparing for a trip, you must do everything in the right order. How can that be possible?

Tips to Enhance Your Photography

Here, we have put together a few points that will surely help you in planning the photography trip perfectly. Take a look.

1. Getting the Right Camera Gears

You must get the right kind of camera gears for your trip. Since you will be exploring the wilderness, it is necessary for you to get the best camera for travel and the right equipment so that every shot you take becomes glorious. Frankly, photography is not just about capturing a moment. It is telling a story through photo while bringing out a character.

It is possible only when the composition is flawless. And such flawless photography needs the help of a tripod, right travel lens, and proper flash. Research about the area you are visiting so that you get an idea about which gears will be perfect for you.

2. Don't forget the Camera Accessories

While you are going for the photography trip, you need to take a few accessories with you. Camera charger, batteries, memory card, hard drive and laptop, all of these are essential for your trip. Make sure that the memory card and the hard drive are clear of all files so that you can have enough space to create backup while on the go. Since you will have to click a lot of photos, a backup will be necessary so that you can sort the images later on.

3. Do Your Research

Getting some basic knowledge beforehand is never a bad idea. Technical skill and an eye for composition are of course components of great photography, but there’s a third, elusive ingredient to a heart-stopping image. That’s simply being in the right place at the right time (with the right equipment).

Research properly before you set out for the trip. Get to know about the areas you are visiting so that you can get into the required mindset. It will not only tell you how to plan the trip but also, help you know what to expect in the course of your journey. Once you reach the place, you must communicate with the people around to know more about the place.

4. Finding the right agency

Get in touch with a reputed tour organizer who will perfectly coordinate the trip for you. Getting guidance from an experienced photographer is also necessary, especially if you are going for a photography trip for the first time. Make sure you find out such an agency before you set out for the trip.

5. Prepare for the trip

Know what kind of gear you are going to want to take with you. If you are going on a 3-4 week backpacking trip across Europe, you may not want to hull around a bunch of camera equipment. A convenient little GoPro or Handycam would help save your back, and create more room for other belongings.

But if you are weaving in and out of cities and hotels, then you could think about hauling around something a little bigger. Don’t forget about your phone camera. Almost all new phones come with advanced cameras, and the footage can be indistinguishable from the more expensive DSLRs.

6. Research Your Destination Beforehand

Be sure to research the popular sights and attractions beforehand. If you know you are going to be in a specific city, try to find some less frequented areas, or even talk to some locals and ask them about some very scenic parts of the town/countryside.

Sometimes, the most frequented spots aren’t the most picturesque. Do not be afraid to leave your comfort zone. Traveling is an adventure, and some of the best adventures are unpredictable. This, in turn, could produce some of your most awe-inducing footage.

7. Learn Video Techniques

Touched upon in our Videography Tips, a couple different approaches to holding the camera can make all the difference. Keeping the camera static could get a bit dull, so move it around a bit. Try panning the camera around an urban scene to get the full effect. Walk up a hill that leads to an amazing view, so as to surprise the viewer when you get to the top.

Get on the back of a moped and shoot some fast moving scenery. Or walk with your phone held up above you on a densely populated sidewalk. The possibilities are endless, and there isn't a wrong way to film, as long as you don't have your finger over lens!

8. Join a basic photography and videography course

Join a basic photography and videography courses to give a head start to your career. To attain technical specialization there are basic and advanced photography courses. Along with your regular classes these basic courses can be pursued or even avail a part time course. For higher level of qualifications you can apply to a photography institute of repute.

If your background is in computers then acquiring technical skills is expected to be considerably easy. Personally introducing your video can add a familiar element to it. Try getting yourself in front of the camera and setting the preface to your travel story. Bring in some of your family members or traveling cohorts.

You may feel a little uncomfortable, at first, but after a few takes it will become as natural as talking on the phone. Make it fun! Experiment with backdrops, write a silly script, or bring in the family pets. These skills help you to pose the right set of pictures, what your client looks upon. This would mean a concise view of the technical knowledge about your equipment, lighting or camera skills and even digital imaging skills.

Aperture is how large the opening is in the lens. There are mechanical blades that move to open and close the lens opening, thereby impacting the amount of light permitted to enter. However it also impacts the depth of field which can be used for artistic effect in photos and is often referred to as bokeh.

Shutter speed on the other hand is how long a duration the shutter curtains will allow light to pass and land on the sensor surface. Typical DSLRs today have curtains that move in horizontal manner, with the first moving across to open the pathway for light to travel and at a predetermined period of time the second curtain will begin travelling across to close the opening.

Modern DSLRs will range from times as short as perhaps 1/8000th of a second and as long as the photographer needs. Shutter speed can also be used for photographic impact with slow shutter speeds causing moving objects to blur or fast shutters speeds freezing the motion or movement.

Once you’ve mastered your shutter speed, you can achieve anything from crisp, freeze-frame sports photos to velvety, motion-filled waterfall shots. A fast shutter speed takes a quick shot, while a slow one keeps your shutter open longer, allowing in more light and movement.

Getting your shutter speed right takes practice – it’s the art of stillness or movement against the science of light. But when you’ve got it, you open yourself up to limitless creative possibilities.

9. Get a Mentor

In the starting phase it is better if you work with a seasoned photographer as you can gain valuable inputs from them. This is going to provide you with valuable insights on what a photographer can come up during their job. Business acumen and how to handle clients would be part of the on job training.

10. Attend Photography Workshops

In workshops you gain hands on experience. Even you can showcase your work on such place platforms as regular visitors would provide true feedback about your photos that can enhance your skills in a positive direction. Undertaking freelance work would also help. You get a sense of confidence when you are approaching other organizations or fellow photographers for work. Photography courses will take your career to a different level.

11. Our eyes like to look at muscle tension

Muscle tension make us look attractive and alive. In a photo, it looks like movement is about to happen. Our eyes are primed for movement. We were once hunters in the wild; the primitive part of our brains reacts to any hint of motion. This primitive part of our brains sees light, contrast and movement not even color, but always movement.

If we see action or anticipated action in a photo—contracting or stretching muscles, we feel that we are seeing some fleeting movement, captured by the camera.

When something catches your eye and calls out to you to create a photograph, your subconscious has already identified a story element. That’s why you have an interest in capturing whatever it is that you’re looking at. Step one is accomplished. Some story is there.

You want to communicate a message from your mind out to viewers of your photograph – that decision puts your photographic process into the loosely defined category of storytelling. Now it becomes a three-part process.

Step two, you must figure out what it is you’re trying to say with your photograph. That’s called developing the story. Thirdly, you must make the technical choices to transform the story into the photographic medium. That’s being a photographer and not simply a snap shooter. That’s something to keep in mind when you are photographing and want your photo to tell a story.

12. Energy is always attractive

Sculptures are called masterpieces when the sculptor has made the stone appear to have come alive, and is moving and breathing. Even more than a sculpture, your body can give us the suggestion of muscle tension, making you look fitter and healthier. This is true even if you are just sitting around: We only realize how much this group has been engaging their muscles when we see how they looked a moment before.

If your muscles are not engaged, your body looks static and floppy, and less appealing to the camera. Instead, hold yourself as though you have just moved into position. You’ve just paused, and you are about to start moving again.

13. Work your muscles a little harder for the camera

You may be sitting still right now, but your muscles are working to keep you upright: some of the 640 muscles in your body are working on this every moment of every day. Only in exceptional circumstances (maybe a wild New Year’s Eve?) do we get so relaxed that we just go floppy and fall over.

When a muscle contracts strongly, your body moves, but when it contracts slightly, you have tension without movement. Try for a level of relaxed engagement. You want to radiate energy but still look natural and comfortable.

14. Check where your body holds its tension

Muscle tension is appealing, but you want the tension to be in the right place. We all use our bodies to physically express our emotions. The set of our shoulders can express more than our face does. When you look at a photo of someone, you can see where tension is being held. Even when we don’t consciously notice the person’s clenched hands, hunched shoulders, uncomfortable neck or arched back, we feel them. We feel their discomfort.

Where do you hold your tension? Probably in your neck, shoulders or arms. You want to relax them, and transfer the tension to your core. Young models are taught to relax their shoulders, and tighten their abdominal muscles.

15. Step up your posture

Optimum posture just makes you look better.Your everyday posture probably doesn’t show your body to its full advantage. Reading about posture is probably making you straighten up right now. If the Queen of England walked into the room, your spine would become even straighter and you would grow slightly taller. You would be ‘on,’ and that’s the kind of muscle tone you want when you are being photographed.

Posture that feels slightly exaggerated to you is probably about right. It doesn’t look exaggerated. No one looking at your photo will notice that you are tensing your core or standing/sitting straighter; they will see a body that is aligned as it should be.

Look at any photos of models, and you will see it—in real life people don’t have this uniformly good posture. But we are so used to seeing it in photos, we don’t remark on it. Once you decide to take a particular photograph, take a moment before you shoot — and now take it from a different angle. Try low to the ground or with an object in between. This will help you practice and experiment with different ways to compose an image.

16. Relax your shoulders

Drop your shoulders and roll them back. Feel your shoulder blades move down and inward towards each other. This is important whether it’s a full-length photo or a portrait. Dropping your shoulders will lengthen your neck significantly. One of the things that we humans universally think of as beautiful is a long neck.

Try it now. Imagine an invisible string from the back of your neck, pulling your head up and back, and melting away any double chins and folds in your neck. That’s because dropped shoulders give more space for your chin, and let you lengthen your neck as much as possible.

17. Tense your Core

Tensing your abdominal automatically improves your posture. But keep breathing. You don’t want to strain the muscles in your neck or contort your expression. Models and celebrities don’t just automatically relax their shoulders and tighten in their core. Mentally, they stand at the prow of the Titanic. Think Prow of the Titanic Posture. Shoulders down and back, neck long, chest open, abdominal tensed, back slightly arched, muscles engaged.

18. Bird photography

Taking a quick break from work and going for a walk to a nearby park, or even shooting through the window from your home office could be a good way to capture some good bird shots. In wildlife photography or when shooting any fast-moving subjects, its important to prepare your camera settings in advance, that way you will rarely miss an opportunity to get that shot. To get good shots of birds, there a few things that are important. Birds are skittish and will fly away if they hear or see you moving.

They are also usually pretty small targets. This means you need to stay far away in most cases. This is more a function of the lens than the camera, but note that a crop sensor camera will always give you 1.5x the reach of a full frame camera given the same focal length lens.

Crop sensor cameras are also less expensive than full frame. The trade-off is that full frame cameras tend to get higher quality bird photos (sometimes to a high degree) with a better bokeh (background blur). Flying birds can be extremely fast moving targets, but even birds sitting still tend to jump around quickly.

You will need a camera that can grab focus nearly instantly, or you will miss most shots (you’ll miss a lot of shots even with fast autofocus, but your hope is you can get a few keepers from the bunch). Most newer mid-level cameras and up have very fast autofocus, and even entry level cameras are pretty quick these days.

Because birds move fast, you’ll want a camera that can take multiple shots quickly. The higher the frame rate, the more photos the camera will take per second as you simply hold down the shutter button, increasing your chance of getting a good pose from the bird. Pretty much any newer camera should have a sufficient frame rate, but 6–7 fps+ is fast enough.

19. Portrait Photography

Getting up close and personal with a photographic subject can be intimidating for many photographers. This is why many people begin photographing landscapes and animals in nature to hone their skills. These photographic genres are challenging and require a specific set of skills, techniques and equipment.

But eventually you may find you wish to include people in your photography and not just as a small element in your images to provide a focal point. Portraiture can be many things to many different photographers. There are posed portraits, candid portraits, close-up portraits, wide portraits and so on. At its root, portraiture is a picture of a person or people.

The environmental portrait is somewhat an anomaly and can be a confusing title to many beginner photographers — it is not necessarily a photo of someone in nature, nor is it a photo related to environmentalism. Put simply, an environmental portrait is a photo of someone in any indoor or outdoor space, where the person and space each contribute in telling a story about who the person is.

What is the story? We want to know what the person looks like, but we also want to know about the person’s life. Where do they live? What do they do for work? What is their living situation? How are they connected to the space you are photographing them in? Every person has a story, and a strong image of that person in a meaningful space should tell the viewer something about them.

Look behind the person: In environmental portraiture, the background is just as important as the person. Whether your portrait is taking place inside or outside, good composition is still your guiding principle: are there distracting trees or poles or lamps sticking out from the behind? Place the person in a space that isolates them from the background, but also in a place where we can see important details of the space they are in.

Look in front of the person, too: Interesting foregrounds can create great portraits and give your photo some visual depth. Experiment by framing people with branches or flowers or furniture — this will give your image a foreground, middle and background, and bring the viewer through your photo.

Create a mood — and try the less obvious: Great portraits are not always informational. In fact, great portraits, more than anything, should give viewers a feeling that makes them want to know more about the person. Ways to create mood: turn off the lights in a room and use window light; frame faces with shadows from trees; ask people to look directly at the lens and also away from the camera; shoot really tight and really wide.

Another good way to create mood is to photograph someone in a place other than their home or work. This might sound counterintuitive to what an environmental portrait should achieve, but it is a nice way to surprise your viewers or tell something unexpected about the person in your photo.

If you are photographing a doctor for example, the obvious choice is to photograph them in their scrubs at a busy hospital. But a better picture might be one in their everyday clothes in a field. It can give your photo a sense of peace that truly humanizes the person.

You don’t always have to show a face: Photographs of details and creative poses that obscure people’s faces can make for striking portraits. A mechanic’s oil-stained hands or someone with their back to the camera can tell a lot about a person without ever showing their face. Whatever the situation is, always be creative and experiment — you never know what will make a great portrait unless you try something new.

Nothing to fear: To begin, keep in mind that there should be nothing about your photography of a person that gives them reason to fear the process. Be confident in this and project it. Many photographers are afraid of how people will react to them and your camera but if you can get beyond this hesitation the process becomes much simpler. A smile and friendly conversation are the way to begin.

Be considerate: Communicate your intent, show genuine interest in your subject, and address any concerns the person may have about your photography or the things you may capture. This consideration of the individual and a simple set of casual ground rules will give you more confidence to shoot away as you like and help put your subject at ease at the same time.

Get closer: You may be hesitant at first but don’t be afraid to get close. You need to be close to allow expression and detail to have impact especially when shooting with a wide-angle lens.

Shoot variety: That said, you should still aim to provide your viewers with image variety by mixing up the moments captured, focal lengths used, compositions and even techniques used. This is especially important if your images will be part of a largerstory.

Understand available light: As with every situation we photograph make sure you understand what light is available to you and adjust your position timing to make your images when the light is illuminating your subject’s face and eyes, or the detail you are trying to expose for.

Capture expression: Don’t be content with simply capturing your subject properly exposed in the best light. You must understand the narrative your images will tell, anticipate, and show patience while waiting for the best moments. A moment in this case may include action or body position but do not ignore the all-important expression on your subject’s face.

These expressions, although sometimes subtle, can instantly elevate the impact of your images. The keys to good portrait photography are lighting, composition, and direction. A great portrait starts with a good rapport with your subject. Your subject is collaborating with you to create the perfect shot.

Take your time and get to know them so you can trust each other to be open and see the process through. Portraiture is more about intuition than technical skill. It’s about capturing emotion and bringing your subject’s story to life.

Post production is also very important. The .CR2 file coming out of the camera is a rough draft, not a finished product. The digital darkroom is an integral part of photography. Getting and learning to use off-camera lighting is an essential skill for portrait photographers.

There are dozens of tutorials for learning to use off-camera lighting for portrait work online, and hundreds of books on the subject. Likewise, photographic composition is a subject that is well-covered and there are a plethora of resources to help you learn it. Learning how to direct your subjects is a soft (people) skill. Again, there are plenty of resources online and in print to help you learn.

20. The magical art of still life

From a collection of inanimate objects to latte art for your Instagram feed, still life is a fantastic training ground for budding photographers. It offers a great opportunity to experiment with light, colours, texture, materials and subjects in a controlled setting. Nailing a still life means building a strong composition that guides the viewer’s eyes through the image. It tells a story but is entirely about form and a pleasing arrangement of items.

21. Mouth-watering Food Photography

Great food photography takes careful planning. Have multiple options of each food item to shoot – not every apple looks good enough to eat, and ice creams melt fast. Make sure the background matches the food. And aim for a natural look with your styling – appetizing is better than picture-perfect.

22. Wildlife photography

If you want to improve your wildlife photography, photographing birds is a perfect way to practice. They are beautiful, small, fast-moving and provide lots of photographic opportunities. Know your camera settings and work off of automatic. If you don't feel comfortable in full manual mode, use a semi-automatic mode.

Shutter priority for action (birds or otherwise) will allow you to set your shutter speed (at least to 1/400 second depending on lens and camera body) and your camera will choose the aperture for proper exposure. With fast moving subjects, take as fast as a shutter speed without going too high with ISO. However, with the newer cameras now increase ISO to levels never thought possible.

Everyone has their preference and limit as to how high to go with ISO settings. Auto-ISO is also an option, especially if you want to practice photographing wildlife or motion without worrying about your exposure (other than shutter speed). Set a limit as to how high your ISO goes to, based on what you prefer (taking into consideration the higher ISO the more grain you get).

Tracks: It's much easier to find wildlife when you can see where they’ve been and which direction they are moving. Learn to identify different species by their tracks and determine if they are fresh or days old. Are these animals moving through or spending a lot of time in that one area? If there are lots of tracks, both new and old, then you may have found a consistent spot to see them in their home territory.

Listen for nature’s clues: When squirrels start sounding their alarm calls or other wildlife is suddenly on alert there is usually a reason for their behaviour. When small birds discover a predator, they start to emit alarm calls and fly at the threat to harass it and divert its attention. Keeping an eye out for this behaviour can help you locate owls, hawks, and different predators.

Research: Knowing the behaviour, life history, traits, and preferences of the wildlife you hope to find is so important — the more you know, the easier they will be to find. Know where they usually sleep, what trees they prefer to roost, their preferred prey, migration patterns and for mammals know their typical home territory (which will differ depending on the time of year and is different for males and females).

Don’t wait for “good” weather: Some of the best opportunities can happen in the worst weather or challenging low light. If it’s overcast, cold, windy or a bad snowstorm – don’t let it deter you! Be prepared for the weather and challenges.

Stay local: Take advantage of the situation this winter and explore new areas close to home. People in cities around the world have been reporting seeing more wildlife. Has it always been that way and we were just too busy to notice? Some experts believe there hasn’t been a dramatic increase in the amount of wildlife in any given area but perhaps a shift in the way wild animals use their territory.

23. Fall photography

The fall is one of the best times of year to go out and enjoy photography. It’s all about light, colour and mood! Remember, the leaves change colour almost every day, so a location that may not look so great, a week after can look stunning. The best time to shoot is early and late in the day as the sidelight brings interesting shades and textures.

Thin clouds create a soft light perfect for foliage colour and foggy days make also beautiful and dramatic scenes. Sometimes a detail on a frosty leaf or covered with morning dew droplets will create a very appealing photograph, also water reflections always look great during the fall. It can make a huge difference on how a photo will look if you shoot the same scene at a different time of day. This will help you appreciate and choose what is your preferred light based on your preferences.

Tips for photographing fall colours

Fall in Canada is a beautiful time of year when colours change from green to vibrant oranges, reds and yellows as the air becomes crisper. These colours create the perfect setting for photographers to experiment with new techniques and capture the changing seasons. Here are some quick tips on how to make the most of fall using your camera as a tool to preserve this fleeting time of year.

Shoot when overcast

When the days are a little cloudy, foliage appears more saturated and rich allowing colours to pop. Although leaves may seem more colourful to the eye in direct sunlight, glare can lead to unwanted contrast in images.

Use a polarizing filter

A polarizing filter is a type of photographic filter placed in front of the lens to darken skies, manage reflections and suppress glare often created by water or glass. During the fall, this type of filter allows you to retain rich colours without compromising contrast and exposure.

Experiment with perspective

Instead of photographing a subject or a scene straight on, play around with your perspective by altering your height. This can be done by getting low to the ground or using a chair or ladder to shoot from above. This creates unique angles. Experimenting with different lenses from Sony or Canon can also enhance images by capturing scenes in unfamiliar ways.

24. Support Your Own Body weight

If you slump against the wall, or plop your weight on the furniture or on railings, it can distort your body shape. You want your muscles to keep holding up your weight. If your support vanished in thin air, you should still be in the same position. If you are propping your head up with your hands, rest your head very lightly. Not ‘oh, my head is tired and heavy,’ more ‘ooh, a fairy has just alighted on my hands.’

Go look in the mirror and try out photogenic posture. Stand with your natural posture. Then see what difference Titanic Posture makes. It may feel like you are making some sort of statement with your body, but, by being photographed, you can’t avoid making a statement with your body. It may as well be one of energy and confident posture.

Try to remember what Titanic Posture feels like. Go back to that feeling the next time you are photographed. You will see the transformation in your photos, though it will look natural to everyone else.

25. Dress Properly

Clothing is essential! If you are cold you won’t be able to enjoy photography. You need to dress in layers. The air trapped among the many thin, warm layers is an excellent insulator and you will be able to strip them off, one at a time if the temperature climbs.

26. Waterproof Camera Bag/Backpack

Protect your camera from the elements by carrying your equipment in a camera bag of backpack. When you take your camera out of the bag remember to close it. The outside fabric may be waterproof, but doesn’t help if snow and rain find their way inside.

27. Batteries

Batteries do not like cold, they will freeze and die. Lithium batteries last longer and they cope better in cold situations. Always carry at least two sets of spare batteries for each body and sometimes, in extremely cold conditions (- 50°C), keep them as close as possible to body.

28. Protect Your Gear

Humidity and condensation are your biggest enemies when shooting in cold climates. The electronics of your camera is extremely sensitive to humidity and if a camera fails this is usually the reason. If snowing or raining keep your camera dry by using a special raincoat or cover it with whatever is handy, a cloth, a towel or a plastic bag or better all together.

Remember that when you transit from cold environment to a warmer one condensation is forming on your equipment, exactly how it forms on your glasses when you are entering a warm room coming from outside.

When coming back home after a day shooting, before entering the door, remember to take out the batteries and the memory cards from your camera, close your bag and DO NOT open it for a while (two to three hours depending on how cold it was outside).

This will allow the camera to slowly warm without creating any condensation. You will still be able to start working at your images and re-charge your batteries as you have extracted them from the camera while still in the cold. Another trick is to place all your equipment in small zip lock plastic bags. The condensation will form around the plastic instead of your equipment. Wait until the camera is warm to open the plastic bag.

29. Exposure Compensation

The white snow can fool the camera meter especially on an overcast day. As the camera meter standard is mid tone you will probably end with an underexposed image resulting in your snow to be grey instead of white. Always check your histogram and manually adjust the camera’s exposure by compensating and over exposing to achieve the white. Be however careful not to “burn” your white.

And now that you know all about sub-zero photography, get ready and get out … the best news is that in winter time the sun is slow in the horizon, the sunrise and sunset last forever and the light is superb!

30. Landscape photography

Create human-environment connection When including a person in your composition, try to capture them authentically engaged in an activity. Photographing your subject enjoying their surroundings will help draw a deeper connection between the person and their environment.

Experiment with self-portraits If no "models" are available to shoot, set up a tripod and hop in front of the camera! Learning self-portrait photography can be very freeing when you want to photograph a human subject in your landscape photographs but are going out alone to shoot. Most cameras (even most smartphones!) come with a self-timer, allowing you to place yourself in front of the camera before the image is taken.

However, many cameras offer more sophisticated options, such as an intervalometer, which can be programmed to take several photos at timed intervals. Using an intervalometer, you can try different poses and placements in the composition as the shutter is continuously triggered until you stop it.

You can also look into purchasing a remote shutter release for your camera that will allow you to trigger the shutter manually while away from your camera. Often, these come in the form of a tiny remote control. However, there are also smartphone apps that can act as remote triggers once set up with your camera — check the app store to see which will work with your camera model.

Learn proper technique and settings: As a general rule of thumb, unless you are planning on focus stacking (which is an advanced technique), you will likely be looking for a decent depth of field to your landscape photography to ensure that most of the scene is in sharp focus. To achieve this, use an aperture between f/8 to f/16 or so (the absolute sharpest aperture settings will vary by lens).

However, why not try something creative with your depth of field, such as focusing on a flower in the foreground and blurring your landscape in the background (or vice versa)? To achieve this look, you'll need to deviate away from the "classic" aperture setting rules for landscape photography and try an aperture setting with a shallow depth of field (lower f-stop, from 1.4 to about 5.6).

Play around with your point of focus to achieve different looks with this low f-stop setting until you've framed up something you love!

Always shoot in raw: If your camera allows it, always shoot in raw mode. Raw files maintain all of the image data and colour details from a photograph without applying compression. You'll be able to push the image further during post-processing, and you'll often be able to restore highlights that have been overexposed, as well as bring back details from shadowed areas without the image becoming too noisy. Once you try it, you'll see why it is a game-changer and likely never go back to jpg shooting!

Use low ISO for a noise-free, clean image: You can achieve the cleanest image possible by selecting an ISO that is the lowest possible option when balancing with your shutter speed and aperture settings. Most cameras go as low as ISO100, but many professional cameras can go even lower. Dropping your ISO as low as the light will allow will greatly minimize the amount of noise that will be visible in the shadows of your image — which will really allow you to "push" the image during post-processing.

Cut glare with a circular polarizing (CPL) filter: Learning to use a circular polarizing (CPL) filter will add a professional flair to your landscape photography. You can keep the scene looking clean and cut glare (especially to reflective surfaces) by using a CPL. These filters are lightweight and simple to use — they screw onto the front of your lens, and are made of two pieces of glass that rotate to cut light glare out of a scene.

They can also be used to return contrast and saturation back to a scene, adding balance as they remove light distractions. I recommend buying the best CPL filter you can afford if you're serious about your photography, as cheaper offerings can sometimes result in an unwanted colour cast across your image. You'll be amazed how much more "clear" the water will appear and how much more you can photograph that is beneath the surface, such as rocks, logs, etc.

Shoot during golden and blue hours: Photography is about capturing light, and you can choose to be picky about the type of light you decide to shoot in. If you're looking for one single tip that will make the most dramatic difference to your landscape photography, it is to focus your shooting around golden hour and blue hour.

31. Improve your smartphone-ography

Here are few tips:

Light control: Tap the screen and slide the sun icon up or down to adjust the light. Use professional lighting whenever possible.

Night mode: When light is not available, newer iPhones offer Night Mode — which can capture some stunning night sky images if you have a tripod. From different objects, black and white or even night photography, there are always possibilities for a great shot.

Portrait Mode: Portrait Mode on iPhone blurs the background and puts your subject as the principal focus in the frame. You can even switch between different Portrait Mode settings, my personal favourite — for portraits — is High Key Mono.

Live photos: Similar to Photo Bursts, which capture a series of photos, Live Photos capture seconds before and after an image is taken. This allows you to select the best frame, or create a Boomerang from a photo. You can also use the Live Photo editor to convert images of fast-moving rivers to smooth, long exposure photographs.

Hands-free remote: Did you know you can use an Apple Watch as a remote control for any iPhone camera? It even allows you to preview the shot — from your wrist — and set timers.

Now, you must be confident enough after reading these tips, isn't it? If you want to learn more tips, check here: Travel Photography Tips.

So, don't wait any more. Board the plane and get ready to experience the best time of your life.
Kalyan Panja