I have a few friends who are serious about photography. (Hello, Bob and Alan!) However, most people I know consider themselves beginners. They often tell me they want to improve their photography skills but they don't really know where to start. It's all a bit overwhelming.
I get it. The learning curve can be very steep. I think I cussed at my camera for 6 months straight before it started making sense to me. However, the important thing is that you have to start. That's all you have to do. You don't have to be good at it. You don't have to be skilled or graceful or confident . You. just. have. to. start.
So, where to start? Of course, if you have friends that can give you advice, great! However, if not, there many resources available on the internet. This is where I began since I had few opportunities to talk "photography" with anyone.
One website I often referred to was Digital Photography School. It's a great resource for tips and tutorials for improving photography skills. and one whole section is dedicated to helping beginners. It's as good a place to start as any!
So, off you go! That learning curve has to start somewhere! (^.~)/
P.S. You might want to start with 11 Tips for Beginner Photographers. It's short and sweet but will get you headed in the right direction.
A Maple Leaf, My Garden, Osaka
Don't get me wrong. I love my camera! However, since it lacks many of the bells and whistles that newer cameras have, it's easy to blame my camera when I'm stuck in a rut.
However, at the same time, I know this to be true - your choice of camera and it's gear matters far less than you think it does! This week I was reminded of this yet again when an online article popped up in my newsfeed. Great timing!
If you are feeling stuck or are frustrated with your camera and think a new one or better gear will help, then I highly recommend reading "Why Your Camera Gear Doesn't Matter" from Digital Photography School. It's a great reminder that what the photographer does makes the greatest difference.
"It isn’t about the gear. It has never been about the gear and as soon as you realize that, you will be free to create and shoot in a new and exciting way."
"What does matter is that you are out there, with whatever gear you have, and are using it."
I hope you find the article as encouraging as I did.
Now to get out there and start shooting! (^.^)/
(The image below is from the article.)
When I was given my second-hand Nikon 1 J2 camera in 2014, I had no idea what to do with it. I had no one around me who could give me advice and no time to participate in photography groups or clubs. That left the internet. Oh. My. Goodness. I was completely overwhelmed.
Thankfully, I stumbled upon a series called "31 Days to a Better Photo". I'm sure there are many other helpful sites out there for beginner photographers, but this one had me at "Day 2: Find Your Camera Manual". Find the instruction manual?! Yes, this was going to be a perfect fit!
Over the next few months, I slowly worked my way through the series, repeating some lessons when necessary and skipping others that weren't relevant. (I don't use Photoshop.) Although the learning curve was steep, thing slowly started to make sense. From there, I went on to other photography resources (more about those later) but I'm thankful for the courage this series gave me to begin to explore what my camera could do. I just needed to find a place to settle and begin, and this series was perfect.
Sadly, the blog is no longer active - it hasn't been updated since 2012 - but the blog posts still remain. If your starting point is "find your camera manual", then I recommend you take a look. Here's the link to Day 1: 31 Days to a Better Photo (Day 1: Welcome)
(To get to the next day in the series, go to the end of the blog post. You will see the option to head to the next post or to the previous post. You can also use the side menu to see the whole series. Remember, the latest blog is always at the top.)
If you are a beginning photographer but this series isn't for you, no worries. There are endless resources on the internet. The most important thing is that you find a place to start and then - here's the tricky part - you start! Wishing you all the best!
P.S. If you have a resource to recommend for beginning photographers, please mention it in the comments. I'd love to know!
I'm a photographer based in Osaka, Japan. I love to take photographs. I like to share.