The exquisite Taj Mahal stood in front of me. The moonlight shining on it with all its grace, the water was sparkling and the stars were shimmering. The moment was perfect. I quickly took out my camera and tried to capture that moment into the memory of my phone. I wanted the moment to never fade away. Snap! Click! when I captured the photo, I looked at the photo. It didn’t really reflect the beauty that stood in front of me. Nevertheless, I was satisfied and realised this is the best I can do.
However, it is difficult to miss those awe-inducing photos on Instagram the moment you open your feed. Even the most chaotic labyrinth of Varanasi starts to look like a cacophony of playful colours. What really makes the picture prettier than the actual reality is the way it is clicked. The light, the moment, the framing, and the angle. Everything comes into play.
People often believe that one has to be a professional photographer and have the most expensive camera to capture a beautiful photo. Yet, some of the most elegant photos on my Instagram feed were captured by non-professionals just simply with their smartphones.
So, how do they achieve this? It isn’t that very hard. Here are a few tips that you too can follow to capture that perfect moment and show off to your nearest and dearest.
One mistake people make while clicking a photo, is that they don’t get close enough. While you want to take the picture of one particular thing you must get close enough to make sure that every detail of the subject is highlighted and emphasised. If you focus on a wider angle shot, then your subject tends to get lost in the surroundings and the focus shifts. But if you take close-ups you will see how that one subject is in full focus and is jumping out of your photos.
While you would love to capture that perfect sunrise or that still boat floating in the midst of the ocean, but still try and incorporate a human angle to it. Everyone can get photos of landscapes or monuments from the net. What makes your picture different is that along with that landscape you can have your travel partner, family or friends. That human connection is what makes the photo unique and special.
This might be your only time visiting the place that you’re travelling to, so make sure that you get the best out of it. Try taking shots from different angles. You will see that different angles give a more dynamic and will add life to your photos. Through your angles, you can show people a different perspective that might not have been captured before.
If you are in front of the Qutub Minar, then get down, get dirty on the ground and try clicking the whole Qutub Minar like that. The effect is beautiful and different. Don’t be afraid to just be crazy. Try the low angle shots, the really weirdly angles shots, try everything.
Some phone cameras already have this feature, but what essential you need to do is divide your picture up into thirds, which means you should have nine equal squares. Make sure that your subject is placed on the interception of these lines. This enables a more emphasised focus on the subject and it will highlight your subject in a better way.
This is one of the most important parts of photography and getting that magnificent shot. You need to make sure that your subject is under perfect lighting. It cannot be too harsh or too dim. Too much harsh light can wash out the subject, and too dim lights can make the subject invisible. Sometimes you need to play with lights also. You might want to take a silhouette, or you might want to play with different lights together. This can bring more depth into your pictures. Imagine clicking the —— as a fully black monument resting in front of a setting sun.
Framing and composing your photo is what makes it beautiful and aesthetically pleasing. Try and find a bridge, a tree branch or a bigger building or anything that will help you in composing the frame. You have to make sure that your subject is popping out in the photograph. Try and find objects that will complement your subject.
It is absolutely true that a picture speaks a thousand words, make sure that you use those thousand words. Use your pictures to weave a story, and through the pictures take your viewers to a journey. Whoever sees your photographs should feel as if they are on a journey with you, and they feel that they were there.
Photos are an amazing way to make sure that your memories are etched into a visual form. It gives you a chance to revisit the beautiful sunrise at Lonavala, or that clear blue skies in Leh. But, sometimes the moments that are not clicked are the ones that are best remembered. Make sure that you don’t get on clicking everything, some times put the camera down and live in the moment.
Open your eyes and take in every little detail of the place and feel the beauty of the place – some moments are best captured by your eyes, they are meant to be transient, don’t try and capture it with a digital camera – they tend to lose their charm.