Capturing the Little Moments – Steps to Taking Better Photos

There are times when it makes perfect sense to hire a professional photographer.  You don’t always want to trust Uncle Carl with his point and shoot to capture significant life events such as weddings or to take nicely polished photos for your website.  But what about the other times?  What about the everyday moments? The moments that aren’t always planned?  These, in some ways, are our most important photos.  They are a window for how we see the world, and a collection of these kinds of images taken over the years offers a glimpse of who we are and what we value. It’s those moments that I want to encourage you to capture. You don’t have to be a professional photographer or even have a expensive camera. Your cell phone or an inexpensive point and shoot will work just fine.  As Chase Jarvis reminds us, the best camera is the one that’s with you.

Here are a few suggestions for taking better photos of those everyday moments:

Look for details

Details not only improve your photos, looking for them also helps train your eye while you are shooting. When it comes to capturing the simple moments, simpler is almost always better.  Looking for details helps you transition from looking at the big picture, to looking for  the one little thing that brings everything together.

Candid moments

Capturing a moment is truly about capturing the emotions and feelings behind that specific moment in time. Rather than posing and everyone saying “cheese,” you get a shot of someone making the other people laugh or a couple acting silly together. A posed picture is sometimes necessary, depending on the circumstances, but a candid photo can take you back to that moment time and time again. It’s more authentic. But how do you capture these moments? Easy. Don’t announce to anyone you are taking their picture. People tend to act differently when they know that they are on camera. During these moments, take a few steps back and start snapping photos. You’ll be surprised at what you capture. 

The rule of thirds

Say goodbye to taking a picture of something centered in the camera. Imagine a grid you’d draw to play tic-tac-toe. Your subject should be in the right or left third of the image, leaving the other two thirds open. This will make your photo look much more interesting than it would with the subject in the dead center of the frame. 

Ditch the zoom feature

Don’t be ‘that’ guy. The zoom feature is big no, especially if you are taking pictures from your smartphone. By doing this, you are messing with the pixels in the image. The result is a blurry photo with poor quality. Your best bet is to take the photo and crop it after. 

Have good lighting 

Lighting is so important. If you have bad lighting, your photo won’t look as good and it will be hard to see everything. Your goal is to take advantage of as much natural light as possible. And if you are struggling to get the perfect lighting, don’t worry. There are plenty of tools you can arm yourself with for more well lit photos such as this phone ring light on Amazon.

Get creative 

This might require you to move around. Stand up high, get down low, shoot upside down, etc. Try not to take every picture at eye level. 

Don’t worry about not being a professional photographer. Or that you only have your phone to take pictures. Capture the priceless everyday moments, and create a special album for you, your friends and family.

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