So, you're ready to do a photo shoot? No, seriously, are you really ready for your shoot?
A while ago, I was challenged with creating a pre-shoot checklist for photographers - I figured it'd be rude not to, so I gave it a whirl.
Before you press the shutter button...
- Check your settings – Is your camera set to the mode you planned to use? Is the ISO set to a useful setting?
- Fill the frame – Does your subject fill the frame? If not, get in closer, either by walking closer, or by zooming in.
- Pre-focus – When you press your shutter button half-way, your camera will focus and measure the light. Use that functionality every time
- Check your focus! – If you’re taking a photo of something with eyes, make sure you have the eyes in focus. If not – well, try to get the important bits in focus.
- Compose – Keep the shutter button pressed half-way, and re-compose your image so everything you want in your photo shows up the way you want it.
- Check your edges – Before you press the shutter all the way down, run your eyes along the edges of the frame. Is there anything along the edges that shouldn’t be there? If so – re-compose your shot and try again!
- Check the background – New photographers are so focused on what’s happening in the foreground, that they fail to notice the huge dog taking a poo in the background. You laugh, but I’ve seen it happen.
- Deep breath – Hold your breath whilst you very slowly press the shutter button all the way down. This helps eliminate camera shake when you are taking the photo.
Best of all, if you want a handy, keep-in-your-pocket version of this checklist, it's printed on the back of my super-handy Photocritic Grey Cards. Spiffing.