When it comes to the pictures you’ll find on Lovely Weeds, I am 100% internet and self taught. I saw the difference between photos taken with an iPhone and with a DSLR, saved up to buy one… and had to learn how to use it! After fiddling with the buttons, I turned to the worldwide encyclopedia that is the web.
You can pay to learn everything you need to know from one place, but if you don’t mind a little web surfing, you can get much of the knowledge you need to take great photos for free!
Here are the experts I turn to…
This guy is also entirely self taught, and now he teaches others. When he wasn’t able to get support from local professionals, he taught himself. This guy has all the tutorials. Shooting, editing, business, babies, weddings, pets… really, everything.
Plus he has a new online community for photographers that sounds amazing, but that costs dollars. I’m confident it’s 100% worth it, but I’m cheap so I can’t tell you from experience.
This site is mostly about editing, but that’s a huge part of photography. This is one where I’ll use the caveat of mostly free, because they do offer presets (pre-determined settings that you can apply to your photos in Adobe’s Lightroom). They’re worth paying for, but still an investment. They do have a blog where they offer tons of free tips, many of which are on my photography Pinterest pages, here and here. I subscribe to their newsletter and tons of useful tips and tutorials have found me that way.
This is an everything blog, but they have a photography section that is pretty fantastic. My two favorite posts are this one, which is a round up of their best photography posts, and this one, which is a what-not-to-do. They have a paid e-course, but if you want the free goods just enter “photography” in their search bar for their awesome blog posts. The Beautiful Mess sisters are adorable and real, and very fun to learn from.
Then, of course, there is the ultimate free tool…
Google!! If you have a question, I guarantee you one or two (or two thousand) others have had that question as well. When in doubt, ask the all knowing search bar! Are you trying to shoot in difficult lighting? Google camera settings for it.
My Best Tip…
I mentioned looking up common camera settings – I keep a list of lighting situations that I frequently run into on my iPhone’s note app. Some I have figured out on my own, others I looked up. They won’t work every time, but it’s at least a good place to start and you can tweak it from there! I also kept a printout of this image in my camera bag when I was first learning to shoot in manual mode, and it was incredibly helpful to always have that resource on hand.
I use a camera similar to this. Here are my other un-fussy essentials:
this strap (it has a “quick release” system so you can take the strap off easily)
this tripod (55% off right now by the way, awesome buy)
Regardless of what camera you have, the important thing is to take pictures. We are so lucky to have cameras in our pockets and at our fingertips, able to record a beautiful moment in a blink. More important than taking the perfect photo is taking the photo.