Taking great pictures isn’t dependent on the kind of camera you have, but on your knowledge of how to use it. Modern cameras are fairly easy to use, so don’t feel like you have to be a techno whiz either!
Whenever possible turn off your flash and use available light. A great way to get beautiful light indoors is to stand with your back to a window or open door, with your subject in front of you. Since the light source is so much bigger than your camera flash, it is softer and more flattering. Outdoors, look for shade. If you have to photograph in bright sun, keep your shoulder to the sun so your subject isn’t looking at it directly and it is not behind them either.
Don’t forget the background. The more simple the background is, the more you will focus on people’s faces. I will often sit people on the ground and then angle the camera down in order to remove distracting elements behind them.
Stand a little farther away and then zoom in. This is really great for capturing moments while kids are playing. Not all photos have to be looking at the camera and smiling, and the most natural smiles come from play.
Pay attention to what is going on around you. Once while working with a wedding couple I discovered that although Leah loved being photographed, Darren REALLY didn’t. During the day, I kept my eyes open and in between setups she did something silly which made him laugh. I was ready. The end result was a small, but real smile from Darren. She later told me that she was really happy that we captured this, because in that unguarded moment, we captured the best photo she has ever had of him.
No matter what kind of camera you have it is ultimately just a tool, so don’t let it overwhelm you.
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