Tips & Camera Gear to Get Started as a Beginner Photographer

General Topics
Tips & Advice

Gear Focus

Apr 14, 2020

blog image
Every great photographer started out as a beginner photographer. From learning how to use a camera to the best way to edit and promote their pictures, there is much that you can learn from standing on the shoulders of those who have come before.

Are you interested in learning how to start taking professional-level photos as a beginner photographer? Check out these tips and tricks to help you shoot like the pros!

If you are considering picking up a photography hobby or learning how to shoot for an extra source of income, we’ve put together a list of seven of our best tips for beginner photographers. So take a look at the list below as you set out in your photography journey.

1. Have A Passion For Learning

Before you even begin taking pictures, it is important to know why you want to become a photographer.
  • Are you looking for a new career?
  • A side-hustle to earn extra cash at events?
  • Interested in photography as a hobby? 
It may seem silly, but defining the reason you are getting into photography will help you determine your expectations. It is likely that if you are reading this article you already have some level of interest in photography. That’s great! Take a step deeper and really begin to think of why you want to get involved in this industry. The time and money you will spend on photography will likely increase the more involved you get. So make sure you know what you're getting into at the beginning! Once you’ve nailed that down, it’s time to find a camera and get started.

2. Get A “Good-Enough-For-You” Camera

Once you’ve landed on your reason for getting into photography and the direction you want to head in your picture-taking style, it’s time to find the perfect right camera for you. As a beginner photographer you need to learn the skills before buying expensive gear. Read that again. Not the perfect camera. The perfect camera for you. Cameras run the gambit price-wise from inexpensive digital cameras that fill fanny packs around the world to high-end professional cameras. These can be tens-of-thousands of dollar cameras that professionals use to capture the jaw-dropping photos that fill magazines and newsstands. So as a beginner photographer, you will want to find a camera that fits the expertise you are bringing with you. DSLRs are great for beginners Most DSLR model cameras are more than enough to get started. Many are fitted with auto point-and-click features and auto-focus options built-in. This can help you take great pictures without having the expertise of shooting on full manual. You may be tempted to jump right in and buy a high-dollar camera. Picking up a used digital camera and used lens may be the best path forward. Having a great used camera will allow you to get your feet wet without risking too much investment or biting off more than you can chew. This will also save you money that will help you buy extra lenses and other photography equipment.  Check out Gear Focus for a full list of used digital cameras to help you get started on your photography journey.

3. Find A Good Set Of Lenses For Various Shooting Styles

A good camera is great - a great set of lenses can really bring things into focus. Most cameras - especially DSLR models - come with a couple of lenses that can be interchanged for different photo styles. While these lenses are great for starting out, it can be beneficial to learn on a variety of lens types. Take a look online for some used zoom, wide-angle, or prime lenses to add to your arsenal. Learn how each brings a certain unique element to your photography. While there are different skills involved with each camera lens, the basics for shooting are the same. Taking the time to learn on a variety of lenses will pay dividends down the road and give you an advantage over other new photographers. Check out a full catalog of new and used lenses online at Gear Focus!

4. Sign Up For Some Beginner Photography Classes or Workshops

Now that you’ve got your passion, your camera, and your lenses, it’s time to get out there and start shooting. While you could go out and immediately start taking pictures, there are countless photography courses and workshops available where you can learn the basics of photography and increase your skills with others just like you. Learn photography from experienced mentors By learning from experienced photographers, you can learn the fine-tuned elements of photography that you may have never found. Look online for available courses and sign yourself up! 

5.  Download Photo Editing Software 

We live in a digital world. Gone are the days of taking pictures and heading over to a dark room to spend hours developing film. With the technological advances of digital photography, you can snap a photo and send it over to your editing software on a computer or phone nearly instantaneously. To stand out in photography, you will want to download editing software that will allow you to tweak your photos. Remember step 4 and take some classes on these complex software packages. These can be rather difficult to learn. editing softeare helps create great images By learning the ins-and-outs of some of the most popular editing software, you can learn how to quickly edit the pictures you take to look even more impressive. A great post-processing software suite will help get your pictures looking even better. Then you can get them to a growing online audience and begin to see your photography skills grow!

6. Find A Mentor To Learn From

Gear and equipment are great, but there is one final piece of the puzzle that is vital for any beginner photographer to get started. That would be a mentor in the photography world. Whether this is a teacher, a local photographer, or an online professional, nothing can beat the insight and experience of someone who has been in the industry for a while. A great mentor will help answer questions you have as they arise in your practice. They will also give you tips on what camera and lens will work with the type of photography you want to shoot. Ask if you can join them for a shoot or if they would allow you to shoot second for them at an event. The experience you can gain from a mentor is one of the most valuable intangibles in the photography business. Take a look at some great photography YouTube Channels like our friend Ted Forbes and the Art of Photography.  Ted Forbes The Art of Photography

7. Patience and Persistence

Here is our final tip for new photographers once you have collected the right equipment, taken a few classes, booted up your editing software. Be patient and persistent. It can be difficult to stick with a photography hobby when it seems like you aren’t making progress. Part of the growth process, however, is the feeling of being “stuck." It is when we are faced with overcoming “the wall” that we can truly discover our passion for photography. If you are feeling like your wheels are spinning in photography, spice things up with a new lens, a beginner photography class or two, or even a challenge from a mentor - you never know what will get your creative juices flowing! No matter what, keep at it!

Start Your Beginner Photography Journey With Gear From Gear Focus

As we’ve seen, there are several ways a beginner photographer can get off to producing great pictures. It can seem overwhelming to know where to start. There's continuing education on the various topics revolving around photography as well as ensuring that your kit is outfitted with the best equipment. At Gear Focus, our professional photography team is here to help you begin your photography hobby or career. Featuring a full catalog of new and used cameras and camera equipment, as well as an ever-growing library of blogs and articles, you’ll want to bookmark Gear Focus. Our team is ready to chat with you and answer any questions you may have. We're also happy to give you a walk through of used cameras that you can get your hands on to start growing as a photographer.

Shop & Join Gear Focus today and let’s get you shooting!

Own one like this?

Make room for new gear in minutes.