Photo Tips 8

36. Making sure that the photo tells a story.

Prior to hitting the shutter in taking a picture, it is best to take some time to check your subject, as well as the frame. Try to see if the subject blends well with its background, and other things that would be included in the photo. By doing that, you would be able to ensure that your photograph would tell a story.

Telling a story is very important. You want your client and your audience to understand what’s going on. To feel the emotions. It’s like poetry, but with pictures.

37. Setting yourself up for a challenge.

Improving your creativity can be done by challenging yourself in taking at least one good photograph each day. Even if you don’t feel like it, you need to stand up, and take a picture even for the most uninspiring objects. By doing that, you would later on realize that you can simply make use of your imagination, in order to take interesting pictures.

I like to try this by doing the 365 Photo Challenge. There are monthly challenges that can help with that. I’m not doing the challenge this year (2018), but I did try to take at least one picture a day, even if I use my phone. I have the galaxy S8 Plus and it pro features I can use like on my camera if I don’t have it with me.

38. Read the user manual.

Many people today do not take time in reading the user manual of their digital cameras, assuming that all of the functions can be learned by simply playing with them. However, if you try to sit down and give it some time, you would realize that there are things that you can really learn from it. Reading your user manual would provide you a way to learn more about your camera’s functionality.

This is important. I even keep mine with me. I also keep a downloaded copy. It also helps with the creativity part.

39. Shooting pictures in the city.

Taking pictures in the city can be dull for some people. However, there are actually lots of ways that you can make the pictures look more interesting. One of which is to go to a multi-story parking lot, and take pictures at its different levels. By doing that, you would be able see great views of the city. Aside from that, it would also offer a fresh perspective over the usual ground shots.

I love city photos personally. Always be open to new ideas. This is critical!

40. Don’t let rain get you affected.

Oftentimes, when it is raining, you could find yourself getting discouraged in taking pictures. However, there are actually lots of ways that you can go around it, and still take beautiful images. For example, taking a picture through a window that is covered with rain would provide you a gloomy effect for a change.

You can also buy a cover for your camera. I gout mine from Wish and it works great. If you have a telephoto lens you can also take pictures from an open window, it’s even from a covered patio. Use your creativity.


5 Favorite Book Series

Being that I’m an avid reader and part of a book club, I’m often asked what are some of my favorite books. That list can be numerous! So I’ve decided to break it down just a bit. Just remember, these lists are only partial.

Today I want to share my top five book series. If you haven’t read these books, you should. If you don’t read a lot or just getting into reading these are some pretty good paced books and will keep you sitting on the edge.

  • “Secrets of a Kept Woman” buy Shani Greene-Dowdell. She also has a stage play for the first one!!!!
  • “Gideon” series by Eric Jerome Dickey. I just love me some Gideon in these books!
    • “Naughty” series by Brenda Hampton. Any book that can have me in my feelings about a character like I feel about Jaylin, is a great book!
    • “Family Business” by Carl Weber. Ruthless is the only word I know to describe these. LOL
    • “Family Business” by Carl Weber. Ruthless is the only word I know to describe these. LOL
    • “Cross” by James Patterson. There are 27 books in this series. I think all except maybe two were fast paced reads.

    Have you read any of these? What’s your favorite?

    Lazy Is Not Sexy

    Lazy is not sexy

    There’s nothing like hard working people. No, I’m not talking strength wise. I’m talking about handling your business. Doing what you get paid to do.

    Growing up I had a hard working father, mother, and many hard working close uncles and aunts. Being lazy was never in their bones.

    As a woman, I work hard for mine. I expect the same thing from those that are in my circle. To be honest, my closest family and friends are all hard workers. Laziness is not who we are. I may not always agree with a business is doing, but if they are paying and me and I’m not breaking legal or moral rules, it’s done.

    Yes, there many pure lazy people, both male and female. Granted I don’t go home with them, thank goodness. It just shows how far the change has come. No, I’m not saying this generation or that generation because there are hard workers and lazy ones in each.

    I understand we all have lazy moments. Myself included. That should not define who you are, or what you’re about. When people hear your name, the first thing should not be the first thing that comes to mind. If it is, you have a problem. Yes you. No one else but you. Now you’re the one showing the lazy syndrome and only you can fix it. I don’t know about others, but I refuse to enable a lazy person.

    From what I see, we have gotten lax in many ways. We tend to allow those that are sub par to invade our space. What do I mean? You don’t want to be alone. Instead of waiting for a better match, you settle for the lazy person. You obviously know they’re lazy or notice the lazy tendencies. Still you stay because of fear or loneliness. Now you’re allowing that person to continue to be lazy. We all really do have to do better. I get that some will be lazy regardless.

    I’m here to tell you, lazy is not sexy. Any true business person, hustler or whatever you call it, knows the truth, lazy is so not sexy.

    Your thoughts? Agree or disagree?

    Photography Tips 7

    31. Doing a trick with sunglasses.

    Increasing the color saturation can still be done even with the use of a compact camera. All you have to do is to hold your sunglasses on top of the lens, in which it would serve as its polarizing filter. This would reduce the glare and reflections. However, take a few shots first, so that you can ensure that you won’t include the frames of your sunglasses into the picture.

    This sounds awesome. I’ll probably actually try this soon!! If you try it before me let me know how it works out for you.

    32. Do some experimenting.

    Lots of beginners in photography are pretty serious in following all the things they learned through the books they read. To stand out from the rest, you should do some experimenting by not sticking to the rules all the time. When you do that, you would be able to discover new techniques and compare different perspectives.

    I love experimenting. I like too understand what I read and how it works. So I’ll always try that way, but then, I experiment. Sometimes it works out. Other times, not so much. But I learn a lot by experimenting.

    33. Have your own calling cards.

    Having your own calling cards is a good way to let people know that you can offer your photography services to them. However, it is also one of the things you can do to make sure that you won’t be offending someone, when you take their picture off the street. If someone confronts you, just hand over the card, so that he would realize that you are an artist or a professional. By doing that, the person would feel good that you have chosen him as your subject.

    I personally haven’t gotten into street photography yet, but I agree, this is a fabulous idea.

    34. How to decide in deleting or keeping the image.

    Oftentimes, you might find yourself out of space to save your photos in. Therefore, it is best to decide on what images to keep and what images to delete. To decide on deleting an image, just simply think about hanging it on your wall. If you don’t like the thought of doing that, then that means that the image should be deleted.

    That’s exactly how I make that determination. One thing I’ve learned in retail, if I won’t buy it, don’t sell it. Great motto.

    35. Build your portfolio.

    Whether you want to become a professional photographer or not, building a portfolio can still offer lots of advantages. Building one can be done online, in which all you have to do is to save your best photographs in a certain website, after signing up for your own account. By doing that, you would be able to check your photos easily, even when you are away from home, and set your standards higher.

    I currently use smugmug for mine. I like it because it has an app. I can upload to the from my phone as well as Download from the app. I can use that site for clients to preview photos as well.

    5 Things I Want To Learn In 2018

    I want to learn a lot of things. However today, in only going to discuss five of the things I want to learn. Just remember this isn’t all exclusive!!!

    1- To learn more about photography

    2- Increase my selling and customer service skills

    3- How to be a more confident speaker

    4- To successfully run my own businesses

    5- Get better at spoken word

    What’s something you want to learn this year?

    What’s your 2018 motto?

    For the last few years I’ve had a hashtag to remind me of goals, to celebrate my accomplishments and stuff. Thanks to Felicia Hamilton for my start on that. Y’all know, I’m all about hashtags too!!!

    2018 hashtag is…….


    No not the song by Salt n Pepa. I constantly finding myself saying “Just keep pushing it” or “Push through it.” Right now I’m Saying “Push the envelope. Push it further than before. It refers to so many things.

    This is a year for me to step outside my box. To go places I’ve never been, to do things I’ve never done. It’s time to grow to new heights with more people.

    There’s so much I want to accomplish this coming year. I know there will be ups and downs. There will be uncomfortable and tense moments. Of course there will be those moments I’m just lazy. I’ll just have to push through those times.

    For 2018, my hashtag is #PushIt. I’ll also continue to use the following: #Unapologetic #Unrelentness #YearOfFirst #BecauseIAmForty

    What is your motto, quote or hashtag for 2018?

    Photography Tips 6

    26. Reason to avoid the built in flash.

    In using the built in flash of your camera, it can provide an undesirable effect to your subject. It can leave your subject with too much light. Thus, if you can save up some money, it is best to invest on a quality external flash. Pair it with a diffuser, and learn how to make use of them properly to obtain the best photo quality.

    I love my external flash. I love trying new shots and learning the lights. I’m not strong in artificial lighting, so the external flash I have teaches me a lot.

    27. Talk to your subjects.

    When you are trying to take portraits, it is best to talk to your subjects while you are doing it. When you talk to them, it would make them more comfortable in front of the camera, which makes the photos look more natural. Aside from that, it can also provide you a chance to take candid shots.

    28. Testing out the modes of your camera.

    If you have just bought a brand new camera, one of the first things that you can do is to test out its different modes. You should try out its auto mode, manual mode, and such. By doing that, you would become more familiar of its settings. Thus, you would learn more about what settings to use in different types of photo taking.

    I’m very introverted. So sometimes I be nervous, especially with new clients. I found out just talking and having fun relaxes us both. So make sure you’re engaging with them. Don’t forget, candid shots make some of the best photos.

    29. What to do without using a tripod.

    If you don’t have a tripod, you can still take quality photos by bracing yourself while shooting. You can do this by leaning against a wall, or resting your camera on top of a stable object. Aside from that though, to make sure that the photos are not blurred, it is best to hold your breath when pressing the on the shutter button.

    This is also one of the first things my mentor taught me. This has been some if they most valuable information I’ve received. I do events where I don’t have time to keep moving the tripod to get the shots. So the bracing and breathing techniques has really helped me.

    30. Always return the settings of your camera to the average one.

    There are times when you want to take pictures while you are strolling around the park, or in your neighborhood. To make sure that you can take an instant shot, it is best that you always put your camera on regular settings. With that, you would be able to snap on it immediately, without having to go through lots of hassles in getting the right settings.

    I learned this early on. If you have to fix settings you’ll miss a lot of images. When in just strolling I keep my settings on regular or auto.

    “Girl Power” Playlist

    The other day I found that I needed a “Girl Power” playlist.  I went looking for an already made list and to my disappointment only found one on Pandora radio (which was pretty sad because it was break up songs) and the other was Disney (had a few good songs but it focused on the movie or show).  So I set about to create my own list.  I did have some help from some of my awesome FB friends.  So here’s my list.

    • “Sorry Not Sorry” by Demi Lovato
    • “Jumpin’ Jumpin” by Destiny’s Child
    • “Survivor” by Destiny’s Child (because so many still love the song)
    • “Boss” by Fifth Harmony
    • “Feeling Myself” by Nicki Minaj
    • “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift
    • “Rude Boy” by Rihanna
    • “Conceited” Remy Ma
    • “Whateva” by Rema Ma
    • “I’m Real” by J Lo
    • “Who’s That Girl” by Eve
    • “I’m Better” by Missy Elliott
    • “Eve” by Eve
    • “You Had Me, You Lost Me” by Eve
    • “She bad Bad” by Eve
    • “Make It Out This Town” by Eve
    • “Grind Or Die” by Eve
    • “Zero Below” by Eve
    • “Empire State Of Mind” by Jay Z & Alicia Keys
    • “Girl On Fire” by Alicia Keys
    • “Roar” by Katy Perry
    • “Swish Swish” by Katy Perry
    • “Broken Glass” by Rachel Platten
    • “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten
    • “Stand By You” by Rachel Platten
    • “Who Says” by Selena Gomez
    • “Ladies Night” by Lil’ Kim
    • “Look But Don’t Touch” by Empire Cast
    • “Just Stand Up!” by Artist Stand Up To Cancer

    Those are the songs currently on my “Girl Power” playlist.  Do you have others that should be added?  I’d like to know!

    Photography Tips 5

    21. Check out the exif data.

    When you check back on your pictures, it is best to check out the camera settings when you took them. Some of the setting you want to know about regarding this would include the aperture, shutter speed, and such. To do that, refer to the exif data of the pictures. By doing that, it can help you take note of the things you have done right or you have done wrong, and make improvements.

    This has been a great help for me, especially when I create an image I love by accident. I want to know how to do it again. On the flip side, it helps when I can’t get it right. When I ask a mentor I’m able to give them that information. Most of the time they can tell me off the top what I did wrong.

    22. Use your flash outdoors.

    This idea may seem a bit funny for some. However, using your flash when you are taking pictures outside is actually a good idea. It is often referred to by professionals as “fill flash”. Using your flash outside can help light up your subject even on a sunny day, especially if the light is coming from behind them.

    This was one of the first things my mentor told me. It was hard to understand or grasp at first, but when I took the same shot with and without the flash was able to see the difference.

    23. How to take pictures of sunsets.

    Setting your white balance to daylight and not to auto is a good idea when taking pictures of sunrises or sunsets. Oftentimes, when there is lower amount of light, your camera may not provide you the best photo for it. Thus, it is best to set it to daylight, or better yet, put the white balance mode to manual.

    This tip I’m still working on. I rarely get the chance to experience either. I’d love to hear how that works for you.

    24. Back up your images.

    Backing up your images is one of the most important things you need to do. You can easily do it by purchasing an external hard drive for your computer. By backing up your images, you are assured that they won’t get lost. Back up your photos every one or two weeks, and store the it in a place that is safe.

    I would also recommend using some sort of cloud storage as well. Granted it may not always be able to be saved in RAW format but, that is your extra protection. We never know when a disaster may strike and we may not be able to get the laptop or hard drive, but at least they’ll still be in the cloud. I use an external drive and cloud as backup.

    25. How to manage your hard drive space.

    Managing your hard drive space is very important, since it is where you would store your images. Save space on your hard drive by spending some time in sorting out the images. Select the images that you really want to keep. After doing that, all those that you have not selected should be deleted, so that you can save more room for future photos.

    This is so true. However, sadly, I haven’t done that. Why, not really sure. Still I know that is definitely a 2018 project goal.