Join Joseph "PhotoJoseph" Linaschke for an in-depth discussion in this video Perspective, part of Photography 101.
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- The first concept that I wanna talk about is the idea of perspective. By simply changing your perspective, you can dramatically improve your photography, and this is probably the single most important thing to keep in mind if you're trying to make better pictures. Just change your perspective, change your point of view. What do I mean by that? Well, if you think about it, most people see the world from pretty much the same level, right around this five to six foot range, with a few exceptions, of course, but for the most part, this is where most people live. And if every photo is made from this standing height. (shutter click) So most photos are gonna look the same and are gonna probably get a little bit boring.
But by simply changing your perspective, changing your point of view, you can dramatically change the photo. So what does that mean? Well, the easiest way to do this is to either get up high or get down low. Climb up on something or get down on the ground, and that alone will change things dramatically and make your photos look so much better. Take, for example, this rusting, cranky, wheel-y, something or other that's here. I have no idea what this is, but it's kinda cool looking so I wanna take a picture of it. Well, I'm just gonna stand here and take a picture of it and let's see what that looks like.
(shutter click) Wow, that's awful. That's a really bad photo of a really cool object, so how can I make this better? Well, again, just change my perspective. All I'm gonna do is drop down to ground level and we're gonna see a completely different image. Now, a little tip here, if you're working with a camera that has a flip out LCD, this makes getting down low or even up high a lot easier. I don't have to lay down on the ground to get the shot. I can just flip up the LCD, drop down, and now I've got a much better angle for myself and for the photo.
Let's take a look at what this shot might look like, shot from here. (shutter click) So much better, way more interesting. We can see a more dynamic background. We actually have a background other than just the ground, and we're seeing this object from a level, from a perspective that most people will not see. Hardly anybody's gonna get down on the ground like this, but you did, and therefore, you got the cool shot. Alright, let's see what else we can find around here to get a better perspective of. I found these beautiful yellow flowers that I wanna get a picture of.
The thing is that these are pretty normal, common flowers that everybody's seen before, so how do I get a shot of these flowers from a unique perspective? Well, it turns out that I found these flowers surrounding a good old tree trunk, which I've now decided to climb up on to try and get a different perspective of these flowers. Top down, so let's see what this shot would look like. Flip out that old LCD, and you know, I think for the first shot, I'll include my shoes in the picture. (shutter click) Cause that's definitely a different perspective. Well, let's just go ahead and get a nice, tight shot of the flowers, straight down.
(shutter click) Very cool, as you can see, changing your perspective just a little bit, or maybe a lot, can make a dramatic difference. Now let's see what else we can find around here. Um, guys, little help here, please? Guys? What do you mean lunch? I've found this beautiful vista right at the edge of this cliff and frankly, I don't wanna get too close to the cliff, but if I just take the picture from here, I'm gonna have some of this kinda scrubby, frankly not that attractive scenery in the photo as well.
So by simply raising the camera up, again, changing the perspective by getting it higher, I'll be able to avoid all of this and get a cleaner shot. So I'm gonna go ahead and flip out that LCD, raise the camera up above my head. (shutter click) And there we go. That's a pretty picture, and I don't have the foreground in front of me blocking the view, but there's something else I could do. I've noticed this gorgeous tree next to me with all these really cool gnarly branches on it, and I'll bet that I can get a really neat shot shooting through some of those branches, using the tree branches to frame the image.
Let's see what I can do. (shutter click) Yeah, that's spectacular. Using the tree branches to frame the shot is a whole different perspective. Again, this is not how most people are going to see that scene. They're gonna stand at the edge of the cliff and they're gonna look down at an unobstructed view, but by using these natural tree branches as a natural frame, it makes it look completely different.
It's almost like framing a picture on your wall, but now we've put a frame within a frame. It's pretty nice to see it this way, and it's one of those things that you can always be on the lookout for. Alright, now that we've looked pretty deeply at the idea of perspective, let's take a look at camera angles next. We'll see how by changing our angle and the angle of the camera itself, we can dramatically improve our photos.
- Adjusting aperture, shutter speed, and ISO
- Controlling autofocus
- Using buttons to change focus, metering, and shooting modes
- Carrying a camera like a pro
- Stabilizing the camera
- Working with flash
- Thinking creatively and changing your point of view
- Buying new gear