Beyond Snapshots


“Be inspired to see the beauty around you, everyday.”~Beyond Snapshots

For my 30th birthday I got the amazing gift of a DSLR camera. Certainly, this thoughtful gift from my husband was also a gift for himself, but I don’t care. It has turned out to be SO AMAZINGLY FUN. I would never have gotten up the courage to go out and buy one of those things because I didn’t really have a clue how to use them…..until now.

In my previous post about moving to Japan , I talked about my first couple of  point and shoot cameras. I did love them. And after a while I could get some pretty nifty pics out of them. But there is a limit to what you can do when your camera is set to Auto.

Have you ever looked on Facebook and thought “wow, they take such awesome photos….they must have a shit-hot camera”? They probably don’t, they probably just know how to use the camera they have.

I tried reading online forums about how to use my Nikon better. But they were boring. And confusing. And often didn’t have pretty pictures clearly illustrating the points trying to be made. They often used words that went right over my head.

Enter: Beyond Snapshots, a photography book written by Rachel Devine and Peta Mazey. This book is aimed at helping people like me who have a camera that you can adjust the settings on but aren’t really confident in the how.

This books covers all aspects of trying to get excellent images to look a little bit special. And after reading it, I can also say that even if you don’t have a DSLR, even if you are just taking photos on your mobile phone, this book is still awesome!

Some things covered:

  • The technical settings on your camera, how to best adjust them and why you would adjust them (I never really understood the point of ISO until now!!)
  • Getting inspired, how to compose a nice shot and setting up a home studio.
  • Talking about the Pros & Cons of different photo editing software, some easy ways to use them to make you photos a little bit WOW (you CAN make a good shot an AMAZING shot)
  • How to shoot different subjects (couples, singles, marking the passage of time, children, family, pets) and milestones (weddings, babies, etc)
  • Do’s and Don’ts for traveling with your camera (whether it be down to the park or overseas)

I just loved this book. It gave me so many great ideas. Not just the technical stuff explained easy, but also some great, often simple, ideas for photographing everyday stuff and making it a bit special.

I thought this book was good value, too. I got mine at a  little bookshop in Melbourne for  $40, but I have also seen it on Book Depository and Amazon for nearly half that price (no wonder all the bookshops are going out of business….please go to a bookshop!).

If you live in Australia, you can see Rachel talk about the book on The Circle this Friday (June 8th)!

One response »

  1. Great post!! This happens to me every month when I down load phoots. My 10 year old likes to take phoots with my camera and then his 2 year old twin brother and sister seemed to follow in his foot steps. I would find my camera on the sofa, kitchen table and think I know I didn’t leave it there but, then I am tired so I guess I did. After down loading my phoots after two months of not I found some of the cuties phoots from a two year olds point of view complete with a few of me unawear of what they were doing. I printed some of them and keep an album. I love short people photography!!

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