Photo's are...meh! Any advice?!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by drwatts, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. drwatts

    drwatts TPF Noob!

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    What up peeps? I'm a newbie to this board so go easy on me! I've been keenly taking pictures for about 5 months now (since I bought my first dslr - Sony a200 with kit lens). At first I was really happy with the way that my skills were developing but now I'm starting to get a bit frustrated. I can't put my finger on what I don't like about my pictures...they just don't excite me. Anyone got any tips/advice/suggestions on how to make them more exciting/punchy/vibrant? Some recent work:

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  2. GeneralBenson

    GeneralBenson TPF Noob!

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    Dear God, man. Upload smaller files.

    I'll say something that may sound obvious. You need to stat taking pictures of exciting things. When you begin, everything is exciting to take pictures of. Now you have to start being intentional about finding subject matter that is exciting to you, and that can be anything. It's all about what you find exciting.

    The other thing is to accept this as a natural and recurring part of your growth as a photographer. It still happens to me about every 4 month, like clockwork. Everything gets boring, and you feel uninspired and you need to find a new way to ignite the fire and get the creative juices flowing again. It's part of the process.
     
  3. drwatts

    drwatts TPF Noob!

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    Sorry dude!:blushing: Got a bit too keen to post and forgot to make the files smaller!

    Cheers for your advice. I kind of figured that this may just be a part of my development as a photographer. Does anyone have any advice related to those pictures specifically? What you would do to improve them etc.
     
  4. Felix0890

    Felix0890 TPF Noob!

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    I'm gonna have to disagree with GB. It's not about shooting interesting things, it's about shootings things in an interesting way. Without a creative point of view, even the most interesting things can become boring.

    Example: What the hell is so interesting about a water drop? Yet if you type "water drop" into Flickr search, you'll get a gazillion pictures of great shots of water drops. Some are magically frozen mid-air, some look like miniature exploding bombs, some are clinging off of flowers and leafs. It's not the actual water drop that's interesting; it's how the photographer captured it.

    Just try to capture something in a way others usually don't. That's what will give your images that umph.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2009
  5. bahandi

    bahandi TPF Noob!

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    I suggest thinking about what exactly you're trying to capture. In the first photo, for example, is it the cars passing by, the emptiness of one side of the street, the neon lights? Sometimes, less is more.

    Framing your subject properly also adds to the effect.
     
  6. TodaysPhoto

    TodaysPhoto TPF Noob!

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    First suggestion: Take lots of photos.

    Second Suggestion: Look for alternate angles, composition, etc. A scene that looks really blah from one angle or in a certain quality of light can look GREAT from another.
     
  7. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Beg, borrow or steal a copy of 'The Photographer's Eye', by Michael Freeman. [Focal Press, Burlington, MA. 2007]

    Read it. Don't just look at the pictures. Read what the man has taken the time to write.

    Then pick up your camera and whatever gear and wander out the door. You'll find that the world has become quite a different place.
     
  8. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Regular cycle for me.

    When I hit a plateau like that, I try and think of something I either dont do well or dont do at all and try and learn something new. I find a new technique, I focus on post processing, I shoot more portraits, I shoot more landscapes, cityscapes, cover photojournalistic events, do some HDR, macro work,...

    Just walking around and taking pictures can get old...but it can be fun! Go out with an intent to do something.

    One day, I decided I want to try more minimalistic photos. So I grab my gear, think of a place to go, grab a photo buddy and head out the door focusing on minimalistic.

    Another day, I may be trying to get funky lines and angles in all my images.

    I end up walking the same parts of my city looking at the same scene with a totally different eye.

    I stopped loading your post after a few pictures, it was taking long. But I see you did some night photos, but they are kinda meh. Get a tripod, read up on how to do long exposure night photos, find examples, and think of what you can do. Then out you go!

    Brush up on the basics of photography... rule of thirds, leading lines, symetry, triangles, S curves,...... take one of those and shoot 1000 pictures of just that.

    Take a course
    Join a photo club
     
  9. Hardrock

    Hardrock TPF Noob!

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    Great advice!
     
  10. drwatts

    drwatts TPF Noob!

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    Thanks guys

    Some excellent advice. So I went out today with renewed vigour and I'm a lot more happy with the pictures I have taken. I didn't have much time to go out on a dedicated shoot so I just photographed what I could whilst waiting for the bus on the way to/from work. It's amazing what looks aesthetically pleasing when you start looking at things differently.

    I think a big part of my problem is that I am a total beginner to photography and I expected to be able to do really cool and exciting things straight away, and when I couldn't I was getting really frustrated. I think I should grapple with the basics of composition, framing etc before I start attempting complex night photography!

    Thanks again for your advice everyone. Can anyone add any more specific critique of the images I posted? (Sorry they're huge! I got a bit carried away!)
     

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