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10 ways to elevate your photography skills

We take more photos than we know what to do with these days. But are you taking the best shots you can? We’re here to help you out in that department.

When Fujifilm launched the instax Wide Link in the Philippines, the company invited its X-S10 ambassador and wedding and portrait photographer, Jaja Samaniego, to share her tips on improving your photography skills.

Photo by Kalden Swart on Unsplash

Make sure that your lenses are clean. Whether that means your digital or film camera or your smartphone’s camera lens, check them and ensure there’s no dust on them. Otherwise, it might ruin any perfect photos you might take.

Turn on the grid lines of your cameras. All cameras have this option, even those on your smartphone. This helps you achieve the rule of thirds. And it also helps you keep your lines straight and align your frame. Also, take the time to learn the other basic composition techniques.

Understand the light. This will require practicing at different times of the day. Learn about the changing conditions. Jaja emphasizes that a properly exposed image is the best photo and your best tool is always the sun. Observe how it falls during different times of the day. You’ve probably heard about how dusk and dawn are the best times to shoot. But don’t be afraid to practice with harsh lighting, too. A great way to diffuse the light is using window light, too.

Take advantage of leading lines. Use this technique, whether a pathway, river, or bridge, to draw attention to your subject.

Photo by Sebastian Beck on

Consider symmetry. Spot subjects that help you create some visual harmony, where there’s equal spacing or elements surrounding your subject. Sometimes you can use reflective surfaces (like water) to achieve this.

Use curves and triangles to travel to your image smoothly. Plot your elements using these shapes. It adds movement, dimension, and depth to your photos.

Photo by Coline Beulin on Unsplash

Get up close. It opens your eyes to different textures and patterns. Take advantage of the lenses available to you. Use a macro lens for close-ups if you can.

Learn to capture movement. A dynamic image is always a beautiful image. Use your camera’s burst mode to capture fast-moving subjects. Play with Night Mode and try out light streaks or even just shoot better in dark environments. 

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

Keep your eye out for colors and patterns. Try to look at complementary colors, as well as those with beautiful designs and textures.

Use portrait mode when taking photos of people. It helps keep your subject in focus. 

Photo by Daniel Rigdon on Unsplash

If there’s one thing we’ve taken away from Jaja’s quick talk, it’s the reminder to build on your basics and don’t be afraid to experiment. Okay, we guess that’s two things. Now, go out there and practice!

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