top five photography

Photo albums are a wonderful way to safeguard treasured memories for future generations and to document the lives of loved ones. Thanks to the change in technology from film to digital photography, creating an album has never been easier. Here are our top tips for taking great pictures for a photo book.

Choose your subjects carefully. Photo books full of the same subject from many different angles are a dull way to document something. Unfortunately this is all too easy with digital photography. With film photography, the cost alone meant that every picture was carefully considered, and a frame was rarely wasted. Digital photography on the other hand means we can become overzealous with the shutter release and before you know it, there are five hundred pictures of one thing.

Change the angle. Many amateur photographers tend to centre their subject in a picture. Photo books that are full of pictures with the same framing are likely to look unimaginative. Professional photographers get active when they take pictures. Try lying on the floor or standing on a chair to get a different perspective. Another great tip is to have the subject off centre or take close cropped shots.

Play with tone. Many digital cameras now have a variety of effects built in. Night vision, sepia, black and white and even cartoon effects can be chosen as you take pictures. Having a photo book that chops and changes between these effects will provide variety for the viewer and add depth to the collection.

Focus! Not only should you focus on the picture you are taking, you should change the focus you use. Macro shots are great for close up detail and it’s not just for small subjects. Zoom in on someone’s face to catch a reflection in the eye, or pick out textures in architectural features. Having a variety of lenses adds to the quality of focus changes, but most digital cameras have high standard focus features suitable for amateur photography.

Experiment. The beauty of digital cameras is that if you take a shot and you don’t like it, it can be deleted and you can have another go. This means that you can experiment, but for that you must think outside the box. Try taking pictures through fabrics, sunglasses and coloured plastics to produce unique effects that no one else has got. Some great effects can be caught through drinking glasses to create distortion in the final picture. Remember that the more diverse shot you take, the more memorable your photo book will be.

Dom Donaldson is a photography expert.
Find out more about creating a Photo Book from digital images at Cewe Photo World.

Candle light
top five photography
Image by Alesa Dam
This candle light is just one candle singled out of a row of five, placed before a mirror; the two flames in the background are mirrored flames from two other candles.

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Dawn in the remote wilds of Costa Rica
top five photography
Image by joiseyshowaa
Taken at Lapa Rios on the south end of the Osa Peninsula

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