Photography for Beginners: A few tips from a film student 2017

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From a young age, I loved to photograph and my hobby with my best friends is to open the oldest album that they have at home and enjoy our little memories together. Photography is a phenomenal thing, especially for me, as a film student I felt that it was something I had to experience more.

My first sentence at the university drew a lot of glances, like most of my sentences at Tel Aviv University. I feel that I do not fit into the university’s view. Although I am very much enjoying the studies, my opinion about the university is that there are some issues that I disagree with.

That sentence I said was during a production class when we were assigned to positions such as directors, producers, photographers and more. I must have assumed that my role is the photographer, and I was terrified.  “Why should women shoot with such a big camera?”

I said it half-seriously, but the video cameras in the studio really scared me, they looked like giant monsters, and how could a little bird like me be able to operate it and bring out beautiful frames? All the students looked at me with a very strange look. Well, they were right and I was wrong (I’m wrong sometimes, it is hard to admit). The university promotes feminism especially in the film department because cinema is considered a very masculine field, considering that there are only 7% women directors in the world.

Later that year, we were given “photography and editing” courses – they talked about it and did not give us an opportunity to try it on our own. For me, it was like talking about a field like astronomy (a field that is light years away from me). I was always interested in photography before the course. But after this course, it only made me more confused and made me think that I will never understand the photographic theory.

The sentence I said in my first year receives a different face today in my third year. In general, my whole thought has changed over the past two years. as an integral part of the Y-generation culture, I have decided that I want to do everything and nothing at the same time. I want to photograph, write, sew, create, learn to refuel, learn to speak Portuguese, French, Italian and start surfing. oh, I also forgot the yoga, fitness, healthy food and more stuff I need (and committed) to do.

Among all the things I want to do in my life, I’m not there yet, but I’m on my way. right now, photography occupies the central role. why? Because photography takes me away from my own reality for a moment and makes me float through the world through someone else’s eyes. I see the picture as an act of art, duplicating reality and disconnecting from it simultaneously.

I’m a beginner, so I know I cannot give you tips that will make your photo suddenly look professional. Professionalism comes from hard work, understanding of the equipment, perseverance and of course, talent. But the talent comes at the end because I stopped believing in talent anymore I believe in hard work.

1. Learn your camera – I know I’ve already said it, but I’ll say it again. Go to someone who understands a little more than you. it will take a few seconds to understand and an eternity of investigation and implementation. You will learn about the lens, how large the aperture is, how the aperture works (gives a wide or narrow focus), the shutter (the speed of the shutter affects the light entering the frame and gives an option to shoot while the object is moving) when there is no option to add lighting you can work with the iso. (The iso, can also make the image look nuclear, so be very careful about it.)

2. Do not be afraid to direct your object – when I started to deal with the subject of professional photography, I was the object myself. One of my best friends, Lital Tal, is a photographer by profession and when she started to deal with the camera we would go out for many photo shoots. Whether it was street photography, magazine photography or even just nature photography. As someone who was usually used to be the object of photography, I can tell you that there is nothing that can help more than you direct your object a bit. Tell him how the picture looks better so that he can cooperate as well.

3. Find a beautiful corner that you think can be picturesque – I like to find lively corners that put me in a time machine and take me out in another decade. In addition, I will never be ashamed to ask about whether it is possible to photograph or to be photographed in a certain place. After all, I have nothing to lose here, but only to earn.

4. Dynamic of a photographed – photographer is very important. When there is no chemistry or a fun interaction between the model and the photographer this feeling will also go to your pictures. Photography is a tool that can take out your emotions (one picture is worth a thousand words, isn’t it?). If you feel that the dynamic is not good, stop the photoshoot, do something small to break the ice and continue.

5. Each camera can take a good picture. I will be honest with you; my equipment is very simple equipment. I saw photographers with lenses like National Geographic and they made me nervous. They made me doubt myself. After all, what do I know? I bought a second-hand camera without even knowing what its data was. Just as you do not measure a painter according to the quality of his brush, you do not measure a photographer according to the quality of his camera.

6. Put yourself in the frame (even if you are not inside it) – André Bazin, one of the greatest theorists of cinema, claimed that the power of photography in the frame is to isolate one detail from the general fabric. The photograph exposes, insulates, sharpens and focuses on this object to put our attention on it. If you choose to focus on something, you have to understand why you did it.

7. Do not always listen to your intuition – do not give up on any frame. When I go out to shoot, I photograph as much as possible, then I come home and delete what I do not like, edit what I do and send to the client. Most of the time, the pictures that come out dark or seem to me to be uninteresting they are the ones that have the most to potential to work with and you can get things out of them that you did not think about. Usually, I believe in listening to my intuition, but this time, I have to give it some rest.

Hope you have learned something new – it is an article for beginners but the people I appreciate the most are those who think they know everything but still learn from people who know less than them.
What tip did you like and connected the most? What tip do you think you can add to the article?

Tell me in the comments what you like to photograph the most!

All Photography credit goes to Lielle Sand

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