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5 common mistakes that ruin your photos

Capturing the perfect photo isn’t as easy as some might think. Even with all the tech advances in cameras and smartphones, grabbing an exceptional picture takes some skill.

Lighting, composition and great subject matter are just a few of the important factors required to be a good photographer. Even with all the right elements, you can still make mistakes that completely wreck the picture.

That’s why we’re here to tell you about the five common mistakes that can ruin your photos. Avoid making these errors and fill your image library with incredible shots.

Put that trigger finger away

You might think the more pictures you take the better your chances of getting a great one. That’s not always the case.

Clicking the shutter button like a maniac isn’t the answer. Snapping 50 pictures as quickly as you can isn’t going to up the odds of finding a winner; in fact, it can hurt your cause.

You are much better off slowing down, taking your time and making sure that the subject matter is exactly the way it needs to be for a great shot.

 

Related: How to make money selling your photos online

 

Au naturel is where it’s at

If you spend any time on social media at all, you know people constantly filter their selfies. Just because everyone else is doing it doesn’t mean you should.

Think about classic photos from history — do any of them show a person with a unicorn horn coming out of their skull? Uh, no.

If you’re trying to be a serious photographer, your best bet is to stick with the au naturel look. If you’re just having some fun and want to share goofy pics on social media, knock yourself out and filter away, but when you’re trying for something special, leave the filters to the amateurs.

 

Related: Free alternative to Photoshop

 

No, that’s not what flash is meant to do

There is one common mistake almost everyone has made at one time or another: using a flash to illuminate a dark room.

While this might help capture with a picture in a dark space that you normally wouldn’t get at all, that’s not what a flash is intended to do. A camera’s flash was designed to add more light to a subject in situations where a little more light can make all the difference — not replace lighting altogether.

The best thing you can do is adjust the lighting in the room before you take your shot and let the flash enhance when needed. Remember, a good photo should have more than one light source. Use the flash specifically to get the correct balance between multiple light sources.

Looking for more photo tips and examples of pro-quality shots? Visit Dreamstime for inspiration and pro photography advice.

It’s not your equipment’s fault

If you’re not snapping perfect pics at all times, don’t run out and pay a fortune for new equipment. Some think the only way to shoot quality pictures is to have an expensive camera but that just isn’t true.

Again, think back to some of the breathtaking classic photos you’ve seen throughout the years and imagine the equipment those photographers were working with. Even the low-end cameras of today are better quality than those.

It’s more about the skills you bring to the table than the specs on your camera. Lighting, composition, timing and good subject matter all play important roles in great photography. Once you’ve honed your skills, you’ll see you don’t need to shell out big bucks for new equipment.

Photo editors aren’t always the solution

While photo editors can be a great tool for touching up minor issues, you don’t want to use them in an attempt to spin gold from straw. Editors do bring out details but they also have limits.

Instead of using photo editors as a crutch, remember best practice is to use some basic photography techniques to maximize results. After taking your amazing pic, use photo editors to make minor tweaks and enhance your images. The end result? Higher-quality products.

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