A new year is when many people resolve to drop bad habits such as eating too much and not exercising enough. If you’re a photographer, it’s a good time to break other bad habits you’ve developed over the years that continue interfering with your craft. These bad habits may seem small and unimportant on their own, but when you’re guilty of more than one, it can make photography harder than necessary. Break these bad habits now and start the New Year right with better images.
Depending on photo-editing software too much
Treating photo-editing software such as Lightroom or Photoshop as your backup plan if the original photo had issues such as bad exposures or distracting background is too much of a crutch and a bad habit you need to break. Getting the image right in-camera, or as right as possible, saves time later and can help keep your pictures more authentic and natural-looking. By using the correct white balance for lighting conditions and aiming for the right exposure during the shoot, there’s less you need to correct (if anything) with photo editing software.
Forgetting to clean the camera
Taking a few minutes to clean your camera sensor before or after every time you use your camera can save you hours of time later. Unless you like sorting through dirty photographs filled with dust spots that you have to remove in processing, resolve to clean your equipment regularly this year. When you don’t keep your lenses clean, the acids in your fingerprints can erode the coating on the front element. The camera may malfunction if the electrical contacts are dirty and if you don’t regularly clean your camera to keep it in top shape, it won’t be worth as much when you trade it in or sell it.
Pretending bad images are always the camera’s fault
It’s natural to blame the camera for bad images sometimes, but when you’re doing it all the time there’s something wrong. Any great photographer learns to work with whatever limitations the camera has to produce quality images. Even the most high-end camera doesn’t guarantee good shots if there’s always operate error involved. Certain specialist tools such as macro kits or long lenses work well for some areas of photography, but you can still achieve amazing images with a standard kit lens. A kit lens is unobtrusive and can help you capture photos that longer lenses or extreme focal lengths don’t always guarantee.
Forgetting to reset your camera
It can feel tedious to reset the camera after every shoot, but it’s a good idea in the end because then you won’t miss later shots because your equipment wasn’t ready. Reset the camera to a point-and-shoot option so you have a higher chance of capturing an image on the go. Check the exposure scale in the viewfinder before you take a photo to make sure you don’t have previous exposure compensations dialed in that will cause overexposed or underexposed images.
Not backing up work frequently
This is one of the worst habits you can have as a photographer because it’s usually one you don’t think about until it’s too late. Losing hours of hard work because your SD card malfunctions are frustrating and highly avoidable. Back up your photos regularly and back them up in different locations and different types of storage just to be safe.
Another bad habit to break in the New Year is allowing your images to accumulate on your computer without ever printing them out and sharing them with the world. At Baboo Digital, we have various digital printing options to help you produce high-quality images and keep your photography hobby or business going strong.
Featured image by Terence Lim