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Your Life in Pictures

by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo) (follow)
I'm a freelance writer living in the beautiful river town of Mannum in SA, dreaming of the day I can retire from the 9-5 to write full time.
Life Skills (425)      Perspective (98)      Fun (39)      Memories (20)      Skills (15)     

Girl with camera
Image courtesy of theunlockr.com

You know how people always groan when you bring out the camera and ask them to smile?

Well, ignore them and take the photo anyway. (The truth is, most people really donít mind and will probably ask you for a copy of the photo for themselves).

Photographs chronicle our lives. Looking back over photos of a happy occasion or of your childrenís milestones is the best way to remember and relive the feelings that you captured at the time. We canít always rely on our brains to remember for us. Time tends to blur the details no matter how sharp we think we are, and sadly diseases like Alzheimerís are becoming more common.

A photograph can trigger feelings of happiness that can release endorphins (known as happy hormones) in your brain. This is a great way to alleviate depression and anxiety. Photos are also great conversation starters and can help people connect through reminiscing.

You donít have to be a particularly good photographer, (and todayís digital cameras make us all look more clever than we really are) but a slightly off-kilter photo is better than not taking one at all. I know my mother took some dreadful shots and could have benefited from a digital camera, but we still look back and have a good giggle over them.

Here are a couple of good tips that I've learned the hard way:

Try not to stand too far away from your subject.

Try to have a complimentary coloured backdrop that doesn't detract from your main focus. Take notice of what's behind your subjects.

Girl with camera
Image courtesy of cheezburger.com

If youíre using a regular digital camera, make sure itís on the appropriate setting (canít stress this enough.)

Donít make all of your shots too Ďposedí. Some of the best ones are the spontaneous fun shots that were not expected.

Donít be shy about bringing the camera out. In a yearís time youíll regret that you didn't.

Take a picture of each of your children every year on their birthday.

Save your photos in folders on the computer and name and date each folder.

If you print photos off, write the names and dates on the back.

Only save the best shots, and make the decision quickly. The longer you keep them the harder it is to get rid of the bad ones.

Don't over-photoshop your subjects. There is more fun in the reality of the shot - freckles and all. Do a little but don't erase the character.

Always have a spare memory card in the camera case

Always have a spare set of batteries in the camera case.

Girl with camera
Image courtesy of telegraph.co.uk

When taking holiday shots of scenery or buildings try to have someone or something in the foreground Ė unless they are just for your own interest, otherwise your photos can end up looking like postcards.

When taking lots of shots (especially on holiday) use the memo function on your phone or keep a pen & paper handy and write down details you will want to remember about each photo, like where and when they were taken, or what the activity was called Ė Youíd be surprised how easy it is to forget or to mix up details later on.

# Life Skills
# Perspective
# Fun
# Memories
# Skills
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