Botanical Garden With A Lumix

I have received many questions regarding the gear I use, and comments about how good of a camera I must have to capture my photographs - but Inspiring images have very little to do with the camera itself.

This week for my photography class I got the chance to visit the Desert Botanical Garden. With me I took a Nikon D7000 with three lenses (17-50mm 2.8, 50mm 1.8, and 80-200mm 2.8), and a Panasonic Lumix Lx5. I did not have many intentions to shoot with the Lumix, but once I got it out of my bag I noticed how much easier it was to carry around. I ended up taking most of the photographs with this camera, and I really liked the results I got from it.

The D7000 is a great camera with incredible performance, but it can be a hassle having to drag it around with other lenses. The Lumix Lx5 is extremely light and compact and does not compromise image quality - Plus, it offers full manual controls. I was able to get the shots I wanted with the much less expensive Lx5. Here are some sample images:

Take Better Photos With Your Phone!

These days you can find cameras in many of our devices, including cell phones. Now, you can take great photographs with the improvements in the quality of what is being offered in some phones. Whether you use your phone to capture a special moment, make a post on Instagram or Facebook, or just selfies, you can do so in a more creative way by following some of these tips: 

     1. Light your subject. Sometimes you will find that your images are really grainy, this is because there isn’t a sufficient amount of light in your subject. You can fix this simply by getting a hold of a lamp or flashlight if you do not have control of the environment. Otherwise just flip a switch! Remember, shaping the light can change the mood of your photograph, so play around with it.

     2. Keep it simple. Pictures with one or two graphic elements are generally better than busy images with tons of clutter. If you find yourself about to take a photo with a busy background, try recomposing to find something less crowded by changing the angle and/or position.

     3. Compose your shot. Find a creative angle to shoot your subject. Often there are leading lines that can draw viewers to the subject, and look for natural framing like a door or a window, to place your subject in. Don’t place your subject squarely in the middle of your frame but a third of the way in. This is referred to as the rule of thirds. Feel free to break these rules if you find a better way of composing.

     4. Avoid using digital zoom. Using the digital zoom in your phone will result in a decrease of quality in your image. Use your feet to zoom in or out!

     5. Edit your images. Taking the photo is only half the battle. You need to edit and correct it to make them go BOOM! Try using the app snapseed.  This works for both android and iPhone devices. Learn the tool and apply it after you take your image.

That’s it. Seriously. So, whether you are taking a photo of your Starbucks coffee, or a photo of yourself, I hope this will help you make it a bit more creative.