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Alley Cat's tips to great photography

alison watkins photos
You can go out and take pictures of anything! I personally enjoy flowers. I find myself in many amazing places to capture photos. Steve Dommer, my advisor and editor for this series, took this of me on a Dixon sunflower farm. Hover over the image to see what I took at that moment.
Follow this column for photography techniques and advice from Alison Watkins.

Chapter 1: Start Shooting!

Are you a photographer? Do you want to become one or go to the next level? This column can get you there if you follow along. I'll be posting every Monday, unless we have Monday off.

One of my big projects this year is to write this ongoing column. The series is going to help novice photographers become more advanced. By sharing my knowledge with the school, staff and students, I hope this helps people realize that photography is a lot more than it seems.

The best way to become better at taking photos is to photograph every single thing; bring a camera to sports, restaurants, events, and even to the grocery store because you never know what you'll see in the moment. After all, a photo is a once-in-a-lifetime moment captured in a single frame. Even if it happens again, it won't be exactly the same.

You can't take pictures of just anything, though. Some people are extremely picky about people out in the world with a camera. There is the skeptical thought at the back of everyone's mind thinking that the person taking photos might be a creep. For instance, parents don't normally like it when you take photos of their children without asking first; otherwise it's weird. If you end up wanting to take someone's photo you definitely need to ask and the best way is to start a conversation. It's simple to say, "Hi can I take your photo?" But what the person really wants to know is why; so tell them your reason. Stores like Target and Walmart don't especially like people bringing in a camera in case it offends a customer.

My motto is if you want to bring a camera into an establishment then don't ask them, just take your photo and get out. In some circumstances it doesn't work like that, just be mindful not to break any laws and try to be respectful.

So now, go out on your regular errands and shoot everything, with a camera of course.

Next week I'll be discussing cameras best fitting your needs. Some other topics that I'll address later in this series include light, portraits, and photo composition. Check back at the same Alley Cat time, same Alley Cat channel!


Alley Cat's
Photo Tips


Start shooting
Sunrises and Sunsets
Black and White
Long Exposure
Shoot in RAW
Back Button Focusing
The Challenges of      
      Sports Photography
Studio Photography
FX and DX
Street Photography
Painting with Light
Bokeh vs. Blurry
Tripods and Mounts
File Naming and

-Printing and Resolution

-Paid Gigs
-Gadgets and Gizmos
-Film Photography


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