Monday, January 24, 2011

How to Take Stunning Still Life Photos

Still Life photographs do not require photographers to travel to exotic places, not even to venture outside the comfort of their homes. In fact, not even a studio is required. This is one branch of photography that anybody can take part in.

No special equipment is needed. Attention to detail and preparation are, however, a must to get thew best images.

Below are some essential tips to make your still life photography a success:

1. Unlike traditional film, we can take as many shots as we want as it doesn't cost us any money. So it is best to take a lot of shots to find the best white balance and exposure settings.

2. Close cropping is beautiful and effective. Go close and fill the frame. There will be less to crop later and your shots retain maximum resolution and quality. Getting your framing right, will save you time later.

3. Your source of lighting should preferably be to one side. If light comes from the front, your images will look flat.

4. Keep your eyes open for any suitable subject. Some beautiful and unexpected photographs may be the result.

5. In order to avoid shadows falling on the background make sure that the subject is not too close to the backdrop. Sometimes if the backdrop is lit seperately, you will get a better effect.

6. Buy some coloured gels. The effect on your images is stunning.

7. There is one piece of equipment that is a must for still life photography - a tripod. This obviously costs money, but is the only way you can get razor-sharp results.You can also leave the camera unattended on the tripod while you arrange the subject being photographed and if you are taking photos with available light, the tripod help in steadying the camera.

8. Research and plan ahead, epecially if you intend to transform your images later in Photoshop, as this will effect framing and exposure.

9. If you are looking for subjects, try the garage, the garden, the kitchen and even the bathroom.When you are by the seaside or strolling through the countryside you may come across potential subjects. Be always on the look out.

10. Anyone can make a simple lightbox. It is inexpensive and easy to make. Lighting subjects from below is an excellent way to eliminate shadows.

Keep it in mind that it doesn't take much to transform an ordinary photo into a great image.Keep on taking photos. Do not stop. Experiment and tweak to your heart's delight and you will soon have a stunning still life on your hands.

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