Three Tips for Beginner Photographers

There is going to be many things you discover over the course of your career. But it is good to know the fundamentals of taking a great photograph. Let’s go over three tips for taking great photos.

Tip #1 Rule of Thirds

chef cooking

Photograph by: Timur Saglambilek

When you are working with the Rule of Thirds it is important to include you subject along a grid system. There are four points along that grid that intersect. Those intersections you want to include your subject. Below is draw over of this example to help you visualize the points of interest. You can see both of the points intersect at the pots.

chef cooking drawover

Below are some photographs I have taken using the Rule of Thirds.

my chef cooking clams

Now see this same photo using the grid, notice the intersections points

my chef cooking draw over

Here is another example of my daughter…

Tip #2 Leading Lines

Another great tip in making interesting photos is taking them following natural site leading lines. In this first example I have provided a photograph of a garden. Notice the lines drive your eyes to the end of the picture. When you use the natural lines it provides interest and draws you into the photograph.

garden photo

Photograph by: Ciao

Now lets look at my lines I drew over the above photograph to give you a visual perspective of the natural lines in the photograph.

garden draw over

Let’s now look at some examples of the photographs I have taken to show these kind of natural leading lines.

my courtyard example

Here is the draw over for you to visualize the leading lines into the courtyard.

courtyard entrance drawover

Here are some more examples of leading line photos I have taken.

my port yard pic

port yard pic draw over

crow nest draw over

Tip #3 Depth of Field

Another interesting skill set is being able to take photos using a contrast between your subject and the background. This Depth of Field concept or Figure to Ground creates high contrast on your subject verses the background. Or it can be the other way around you can focus on the background verses the subject. Lets look at the example below.

ship and rope anchor

Photograph by: Skitterphoto

Can you see the contrast in the above photo? Let’s look at my draw over this photo below. Notice the rope in the front is more in focus than the ship that is behind it. This points the interest on the rope leading up to the ship in the background that may not be as important. You can accomplish this by  selecting your focus on your subject while the background is more not in focus.

ship draw over

Let’s now look at some of the examples of this I have taken in my own photographs.

my son

Notice in the picture above my son is more in focus than in the background. This gives more of a high contrast to him than it does the background. The background was less important in this shot.

my son drawover


When taking photos there is a lot to take into consideration. But you need to not fear to break some of these rules or think you have to use all the rules in your photograph. You can take great photos if you think about the positioning of the subject to the background. Move around with your camera to different positions until you capture the subject in a way that fits one of these tips.


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