Learning About Photography

Automatic mode

 My digital camera has an automatic mode so what's the point in Learning photography? Don't you just point the camera and click?
 
 While it is in fact true that almost every new digital camera or smart phone now has an automatic mode to allow you to just point and click. The photographs produced are never going to be truly stunning or as special as they could be. This is because in automatic mode your camera averages out the settings values based on the the amount of light that falls upon its sensor. If you are happy with the snap shot photos you get from your camera or phones automatic mode then no you don't need to learn photography.  
 
 However, there are many different reasons why people take photographs. You just have to look around you photography is everywhere. It's In books and magazines, shop windows and product packaging to name but a few places.  I can quite confidently say that the majority of these photos probably weren't taken using automatic mode. Careful planning went into each and every one of them to get the conditions for the photo right..
 
So whatever your reason to take photos whether it's to capture memories, to share magic moments with family and friends, for professional reasons or to simply have fun. You need to do the same. You need to start learning photography if you want your photos to be something out of the ordinary or something that you can be proud of. Something that other people will want to view and comment on. 
So whatever your reason to take photos whether it's to capture memories, to share magic moments with family and friends, for professional reasons or to simply have fun. You need to do the same. You need to start learning photography if you want your photos to be something out of the ordinary or something that you can be proud of. Something that other people will want to view and comment on. 

The Northern Lights 

This photo was taken and given to us by a friend photographer while we were on holiday in Finland. It was kindly given to us because at the time we only had a mobile phone with us that took photos in automatic mode and the lights were not visible in the photos we took. 
 
That is because there is actually quite a difference in what human eye can see and what a camera can detect. 
 

In order to take truly stunning photos you need to learn about several aspects of photography. Camera aperture, shutter speeds and ISO values control your photography exposure values, while composition, lighting and camera handling techniques all play a significant part in taking a great photo. Take a look at some Inspirational photos from the past and see how photography has progressed, learn a brief history of photography and begin to feel part of the photos you take.
 
The northern lights in Finland

Ways of learning photography

 
 There are many different ways to begin learning photography. To start with take a look at our basic photography tips and tricks page and get to know the feel of your camera. Then turn automatic mode off and just get out there experimenting with the different settings on your camera.  

Online distance learning courses

 Online distance learning courses are a great way to learn in the comfort of your own home and at your own pace. Study towards an accredited qualification and benefit from the help and advice of your own designated tutor. This is in fact the method used by myself,  recently passing an NCFE accredited level three certificate of achievement in photography through "the distance learning centre UK". Be very careful when choosing an online course though, be sure about the qualification you will earn on completion of the course. Some web sites lure you in with lots of great looking photos but you don't actually earn an accredited or industry recognized qualification.
 
Peter Cannons photography certificate
Peter Cannons photography course study subject list

Attend a college 

Although my personal choice, studying at home isn't for everybody. If you find there are too many distractions making it hard to concentrate and study properly at home. Look up what photography courses are available locally and attend your local college. Work your way to an accredited qualification while studying with other people that share your passion and interest. 
 

Digital photography guides

 Not ready for a full blown course? Just want to brush up on some finer points?   There are many great digital photography guides out there such as books, eBooks and magazines that have been published to suit all levels of photography. Check out Abe books and Amazon for photography books and just Google photography eBooks or photography magazines for a huge choice of both.