Getting back from vacations is fun. You open up the house, find out if nothing is broken and fall effortlessly in your routines, those you know by heart and allow you to do awesome stuff like showering and sleeping at the same time. But one of the best things of leaving on vacations has just started. And it is nothing but showing off the wonderful pictures you took to capture the exotic landscapes or that great concert night when you ended up bathing in the beach.

What a rush, to download the pics to your computer just to realize… they do not look at all the way you remember. There are crushed your dreams of using these great shots to fill your hallway with frames and put green with envy all your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and / or Pinterest contacts. We all know the phrase-excuse “This picture does not really get it right, but the place was amazing, I assure you…”. Who is to blame? Is the camera incapable of capturing the colors, lights, textures and beauty of the landscapes? Buying a better machine might help. Learning to use your current camera is cheaper and usually fruitful.

In this blog we intend not to show you how to use a camera, there are thousands of blogs filled with photographers more than enthusiastically sharing their wisdom. The probably know a lot more than I about that anyways. But there are a series of basic advices that can help you get there:

  1. Configure the focus on your camera. Search for that missing menu or button that configures it and turn it to AF-S. Also, find the focus points configuration and set the only focus point in the middle of your objective. Why? Well, this is the point where the camera gets most light, and it will allow the system to improve on the definition of the focal distance. With both configurations set you will be able to focus perfectly whatever is in the middle of you frame by pressing the shooter lightly. If you wonder how can you use it if you don’t want to focus on something on the middle of the frame, you just focus first on whatever you wish, then move the objective to get the shot you want.
  2. Choose what you want to focus. It is not always the obvious. The human eye finds really disturbing to have something unfocused close. So, a safe bet is focusing on the nearest object.
  3. Translate. The human eye has the great ability of getting a large amount of objects and details and compose them so that we discover their joint beauty. A picture, however, cannot capture the complex beauty of the mountains, a little cottage on the side and the funny-faced goat at once. Try taking it slowly. One picture goes to the goat, a great portrait. Another one to the cottage between the mountains and then, maybe, a general frame of the landscape.
  4. Spin. A great shot. You have an horizontal landscape and the picture looks amazing. Do not lay back and rest. Try turning your camera 90º sideways and see what shows there. You might be surprised. The horizontal frames show the wideness and openness of a landscape. The vertical shots have strength. Don’t be petty with your camera memory card, take both shots.
  5. Your point of view is not the best point of view. We usually take the camera up to our eyes. We might be missing details that would give so much strength to the image. If you lower the point of view, the objects located out front get attention. If you rise your point of view, a shot previously confusing achieves clarity and detail.

Now you are ready, so… Figured out where to next? What about La Gomera? 😛