Getting started in digital photography can both be exciting and overwhelming at the same time. If you stay the course it will become a rewarding hobby at least that’s what I heard from a friend of a friend. “Just think about it,” he told me “this will allow you to capture lifelong memories and possibly become an Instagram superstar!” I thought man I’m in, “how do I get started?” After a few weeks of research and countless hours going back and fourth between the big brands Nikon, Canon and the newbie to the field Sony (not a lot of peeps on that bandwagon). I jumped onto the Sony train and headed out of the station onto my digital photography adventure. This is what photography should be an "adventure”. You need to get out there and start shooting; or else your nice new SLR camera will collect dust and you’ll feel like a jerk. It had been awhile since my last photography class, so I was excited to start a new hobby and take the Web by storm (I hoped). The hobby is still a work in progress, and there is always something new to learn. Instagram fame might take me awhile but I’m ready to get started. Read on for tips that will help you out on your photography journey and potentially building your new internet fan base:
1. Take time finding the right camera. There are tons of great online courses to get information on SLR cameras. In fact there is so much information it can be a little overwhelming. The first step is to decide what you are going to use the camera for. Then make a decision on which features are best suited for that function. Read through the reviews and don’t be afraid to ask around, talk to your friends, family and hit up a few camera shops to narrow down your search. The hot pics on Instagram aren't shot with an iphone so pick something with some chops. Then upload them via your favorite device. 2. Don’t get intimidated by the technology. When you first pick up the camera there are so many dials and buttons, that it can seem a little confusing compared to a standard point and shoot. Take some time to really read the instruction manual. Find a quite place and take a few hours to go through the manual and play with your camera at the same time. After a while you’ll get the hang of it and be ready to try a few different settings. Then take a funny picture upload it and you’ll be well on your way. 3. Enjoy the endless learning process. The best part of having a hobby like photography is never running out of new things to learn. From Auto to Manual modes and everywhere in between it will take a while to master the art. Inspiration is everywhere, just look around you’ll see a great sunset and funny everyday moments just waiting to be captured and posted for the world to see. Start looking at everything with the eyes of a photographer and you’ll see opportunities you never noticed before. Overall just have fun or else no one will dig your photos! 4. Stay the course and learn the basics. After taking some time to play with the camera look around for more information. There are tons of free and inexpensive options online. I found a tutorial I could watch videos on my iPhone while working with my camera at the same time. There is also great stuff on youtube and if you are lucky enough to have a lynda.com account you’ll be all set with the numerous photography courses they offer. In addition, you need to be open to what more experienced photographers have to say about function and technique. They have great insights on using the camera correctly and how to frame a great shot. You need to know the basics before you can become a master and take Instagram by storm. 5. Take photos regularly With a new hobby you have to start some new habits. That is if you want to become an amazing photographer and achieve the status of an Instagram superstar! Try to set aside at least a few hours a week to take some pics, or more if you have the time. Then maybe once a month take a full weekend to get out and shoot some awesome photos. Once you have a good amount of solid pics start to drip them out a few a week to Instagram and watch your subscriber base explode. Most of all enjoy it, because before you know it you may be holding an outdated piece of technology, Facebook will shoot down Instagram and fame will pass you by once again. So get to it!That’s it for now. Let us know what you think. If you have some ideas you would like to share about digital photography or becoming an Instagram superstar please leave a comment below. We would love to hear from. Make it a great day! Brad Molenda is DOs Senior Designer, he also won this years scariest Halloween costume.