I’ve taken a silly amount of photos in the past week. Here are some hard won lessons:
- Don’t go to go too hard on noise reduction, skin smoothing and other techniques too hard. There is a point where it begins to look unnatural which becomes harder to judge the longer you’re staring at pixels. It’s great that you’re experimenting, but it’s a bad thing when your friends tell you that you made them look like a Korean vampire.
- Don’t do any major editing on a 13’ laptop screen. By all means check composition, but don’t post anything anywhere until you can check it out on a proper sized monitor with better colour control.
- Carry the tripod around if you can get away with it, and if you hook it on the strap of your bag you can kind of rest your palm on the top like a cane and strangers with gaze upon you believe you to look boss.
- If you’re going to wander around the crowd to get good shots at a gig, and the gig happens to be a lone cellist, do not wear loud clompy boots.
- Always carry a spare battery, particularly where film or extensive use of the LCD is involved.
- Learn how much control you can relinquish back to the camera. Shooting in manual with set iso and manual auto focus points is great for learning, but snapping friends and taking many shots where there is little chance to keep fiddling with settings result in losing track of something and losing great photos.
- Always carry a spare SD card. Do not promise to video a 21st party speech and run out your only card shortly before it commences. If a friend or family member is kind enough to carry theirs, check to see how much space it has lest it also run out halfway through said 21st party speech.