5 Mistakes Beginner Photographers Make (and how to avoid them)
5 Mistakes Beginner Photographers Make (and how to avoid them)


making mistakes is all part of the learning process and as a beginner there’s a lot of lessons to be learnt anyway enough of the condescending tone and let’s show you how to sidestep those pitfalls metaphorically that that was just a bit of dog poo I was dodging there yeah right oh just before we get cracking I just want to give a quick shout out quick ‘yoohoo’ to Skillshare the sponsor of this video if you want to learn more about photography or other things you should definitely check them out it’s an online sharing community with thousands of classes from business to design to photography and other things as well but it’s not just about learning you can teach you can teach classes by uploading so go check them out Skillshare boom video there are plenty of errors you can potentially make when learning photography but let’s start off by cracking open the first five first off kilter horizons they look wrong kilts coming off in the horizon probably look wrong also yes that’s what my neighbours told me anyway but look off into the distance between that green thing and that grey thing that thing should be straight because that’s how you see it in real life that is unless you’re Rain Man in real life in which case you see the world in tilt it seems like such a small thing but it can spoil your image in a big way just a tiny bit off is enough to ruin an image and it’s something that’s quite easy to overlook because you’re too busy figuring out what settings to use or what your subject is doing or where it’s going do use the tools on your camera your camera probably has a grid for your viewfinder or one of those electronic levels yeah the electronic level and grid is quite easy to use when you’re shooting something like a landscape because the landscape isn’t moving anywhere fast and quite often there’s quite a clear horizon but what if you’re shooting something that doesn’t have a clear horizon or something that’s moving too fast for you to keep checking electronic level do keep using the grid but look out for other lines or objects buildings are a good reference point in this shot one might be tempted to use the advertising board as a reference point but given that I was shooting from an angle in the first place that advertising board is supposed to be slightly slanted and if I levelled that up it’s gonna make the shot a bit wonky you don’t need to get it perfect because you can adjust it in post but get it as close as possible because you’ll lose part of the image when you just do whatever you do just make sure your image is level before you hit publish but then there’s a Dutch angle which technically doesn’t have anything to do with Holland this is a purposely off-kilter shot quite often used to create a feeling of uneasiness but this is something you can quite easily get wrong and something that people use all too often to try and make it feel a bit arty even pros get it wrong just watch the first Thor movie the next one is all about getting the basics right basic but fix your framing and your photos will look anything but basic because if you have an interesting subject but you’re not framing it right it doesn’t really matter such as having loose framing like this I’m over here by the way in fact I could have just done this with VO and just wave my hands save some time save some energy talking there’s some hand wavy action photography shouldn’t be about being told what subject to take photos off so the problem of framing is not so much about what to include in your shot as it is what to exclude from your shot surely you will know what interested you big red dot thing people architecture that beard so you know what is that is interesting enough to make you take a shot in the first place but think of it this way if somebody else is looking at your photos will they know what it is that is interesting within that frame is it clear enough loose framing adds unnecessary information that dilutes what you’re trying to show move in closer this photo doesn’t mean anything in particular but does a better job of doing it and another thing that you can try is to just open up the photos that are already on your hard drive in your editing software and just crop them in see if you can improve any of the photos just by cropping in tighter the other mistake you might make is to frame things too tight and look at this that’s just too much face more face than one really needs you want to frame it tight enough but be careful not to cut off things like your subjects legs it will look odd and I don’t mean literally cutting their legs off all of a sudden [Music] yes so crop it in tight but not too tight you need a bit of context in your photo right and there’s not just about cropping off body parts adding just a bit more visuals that will reveal a little bit more about the subject or the scene will add a lot more to the photo applying filters and effects to your photos can make them visually more appealing but you can have too much of a good thing like too many bloody filters it affects whether it be digital or actual physical filters doing it digitally is fake it has to be done in camera with Instagram creative filters LUTS as well as the old-school filters it’s all too easy to go crazy with them got your filters? one or one hundred because you get an instant effect that is pleasing to the eye I quite like the green but it’s just the surface layer don’t get me wrong filters and effects are totally fine but it should be the icing on a cake you still need that moist spongy bit that is subject framing composition to make a nice cake I’m hungry now you can’t just have an image that’s all about that single layer or in this case 100 now the fifth mistake in this list is making images that are too soft now one big complaint I always hear from new photographers my image is too soft it’s not sharp enough it’s fuzzy now there are a couple reasons why you might be making images that are too soft number one you’re just too damn bloody shaky or number two wrong settings on the camera and there are a few potential causes of this number one shutter speed too slow and what you can do to try and minimise this is to use a shutter speed that is one slash and your focal length easy number two not in focus the fix is to focus it properly first number three definite large aperture smaller number small bit in focus so the other stuff is blurry looks soft number four diffraction opposite end of the spectrum small aperture large f-number it’s soft because all that light is trying to go through a small aperture I just realised how rude that looks yeah think of it this way if you go really squinty Mc Squinty with your eyes like this just look how crap the world is when you’ve got your eyes all like that but the big mistake is getting so wrapped up into thinking all my images too soft is not sharp enough and then you end up getting another lens a new camera do not buy new gear just to fix that focus if you excuse the lame-ass photography pun on making good shots first nobody cares about how sharp your images only yourself yeah so the last mistake is not so much that you’re making images that are too soft but thinking that you are it’s the feeling that your photos aren’t cutting it due to some technicality now your gear isn’t working well for you nobody’s going to look down at you for having a soft image but they will if the photo is ultimately lacking any substance so that’s it for this video another big you to the sponsor of this video skill share is great if you want to learn more stuff about photography content by photographers giving tips and a sneak peek into their work like this series about cityscapes the premium membership cost less than $10 a month which is cheaper than a lot of other online learning platforms and gives unlimited access to order classes so yeah check them out if you wanna watch more tutorials about photography or business or design or even knitting and what’s more there’s a special little promo right here Skillshare is offering a 2 month trial for the first 500 of you lovely people you can take advantage of that offer by using the following link which is in the description below okay that really is it thank you for watching please tickle with that like button if you really feel like tickling today and subscribe right I’m gonna go home now see ya

100 thoughts on “5 Mistakes Beginner Photographers Make (and how to avoid them)”

  1. Carson Light_Lapse says:

    3:14
    play it in x.25

    DATTTT BEEE ARRRRDDDD

  2. gyati gyuth says:

    Can you send me all the broken equipment for the charity …

  3. Stefan Dietmann says:

    I laughed so hard at 5:16 !! 😀

  4. LordArioh says:

    oh, no. not another beginner mistakes.

  5. Max Schwabenthal says:

    6:25 Poor Chinese People 🙁

  6. Maltfalc says:

    1:37 buy a pentax with a self-leveling sensor and an electronic level that's displayed on the rear lcd, the top lcd and the viewfinder. 😛

  7. Mike Jensen says:

    "a pov of a birth" hahaha

  8. Bart Ros says:

    I mean, I love your videos Kai. Long time fan. But you you just make fun of people with autism? I have autism. Come at me bro!!!!

  9. Samuel James says:

    Comment left on dissenter.

  10. Matt M says:

    Yoooooohoooooo to 維他檸茶!

  11. Jason Everett says:

    good stuff as always

  12. Lâm Đặng says:

    6:26 best use of your asianess

  13. Nox Vega says:

    Technical stuff is important when doing stuff for people who have no eye for photography. That portrait at f1.4 will impress them more than at f16. Just sayin' 😉

  14. Cliff Pajaro says:

    Definitely great tips… wish I had this video 5 years ago, would have saved on lots of experimental purchases.

  15. off-white says:

    soon the yammienoob of phogotraphy

  16. sadlfjasdfacv says:

    Cough….sensor dust….cough.

  17. TheTitan2025 says:

    At 5:37 getting head for the first time.

  18. The Fozzy Bear says:

    Mistake number one buying the damn camera.

  19. Johnny C. says:

    FYI, "th" ≠ "f"

  20. Gewglesux says:

    Yeah, Dutch angle's…

  21. Carla Ikey says:

    Love your videos

  22. William Matar says:

    If u can do 1 video… Without manners… Would b nice 😠

  23. Roland Lawrence says:

    ahh roehampton & richmond park… i thought that looked familiar… careful you dont exceed 20 mph on your fixie kai. those park police are fierce 😉 as for filters… my girlfriend always asks me if i have my cockin 😉 … she likes a good grad 😛

  24. Rob McWatt says:

    best video yet – great humour

  25. FallingMage says:

    When did he review the filter set?

  26. rdvmailportal says:

    That's the bloke from Parks and Recreation! lol

  27. Meijin Kino says:

    Absolutely fantastic video

  28. Lok Hei To says:

    You drink vita lemon tea ! I love you video Kai!

  29. Drakken says:

    wtf your voice is such amazing

  30. TokranInami says:

    Funny, i just thought that "loose framing" example was an excellent shot. Obviously not if you want to make an interview, but as a still it's pretty good.

  31. Ker Plunk says:

    There is a spiritual battle going on and Jesus is gathering his souls. Trust in him and you will be saved.

  32. Meth0z says:

    The 1/focal length for shutter speed is only for FUll frames.. u need to multiply the focal length for the crop factor if u use a smaller sensor

  33. mariusz6457 says:

    Hello. Excellent video. Please help me grow as photographer https://www.gofundme.com/q665y-photographic-equipment Thank You

  34. Wrenchettes says:

    kais vids have the same feel as they were on digital rev. im guessing Kai were the main editor or he hired the same editor for this channel? hmmm…..

  35. Teresa hikes says:

    i nearly spit out my coffee when he said pov of a birth.

  36. Peter H. says:

    Oh that first Thor movie – "It's a comic book movie, let's shoot every scene with a Dutch angle"

  37. GoZipper! says:

    I tried your tips and ended up with superglue in my eye and had to walk home blind in the dark while it was raining. 🙁

  38. Taste of Texas Barbecue says:

    This is hilarious!

  39. Jo Po says:

    I've been following Kai ever since he was with the old "Website" eons ago. They never get old, and he's just great at doing them well! Well done Kai!

  40. Montanacal says:

    Kai, Love your stuff, the simple format of presenting a real world attitude and humor to everything you do is refreshing. Love that you are willing to tell it like it is and dont shy away from saying that something sucks balls. Pour the content out brother I love it

  41. Troll Of Justice says:

    The Asian man squinting his eyes. You all saw it happen.

  42. Андрей Иванов says:

    i miss this voice.. tnx for my childhood… 5 years ago atleast… or more… Kai… you are still the best blogger

  43. Nazareth Simons says:

    Kai Squinching LOL

  44. CHIRAG BOKOLIA says:

    What do you do fro living?

  45. aldemar says:

    You look my Colombian cousin but he’s not Asian or British 🤣

  46. ceciliaandemilia says:

    Kai, love your stuff. Are those arches the viaduct in Arnos Park? Football field also looks suspiciously like Brunswick Park. Lived there about a year ago!

  47. Luke Fennell says:

    i love your videos man they always so funny

  48. Jared Brown says:

    When I first saw your videos way back when, you were in Hong Kong. Cool some might say. But now you have really made it. The zenith of the zoom. The apogee of the aperture etc., etc.. Vicarage Road! Enjoy the view from the top!

  49. Leo says:

    speaking of filters and effects: there is one big part you always left out: editing and organizing. Yes, you could tell people to just get Lightroom, but that's not the ideal solution for beginners (its number 5 all over again). Soooo, what about Darktable? Luminar? Affinity Photo? Maybe a mixture of all of them? None? File explorer? Or the classic filters n film + a pair of scissors?

  50. TV WOKER says:

    Foll back

  51. John P says:

    Remember the digital rev video about not dumping your DSlr for mirrorless 4 years ago, how do you feel now? Maybe an update video?

  52. Smile On Photography says:

    Love these vids! Digital rev SUCKS without Kai

  53. Drone Video Denver says:

    I just came here to see which football team Kai W. is photographing. Also, I love his humorous narration and british accent.

  54. John Smith says:

    I have nikon coolpix s3300, do I need to buy a new gear?

  55. Gábor Gyöngyösi says:

    Funny man 😀

  56. Joe Bloggs says:

    Think sharp!
    (unintentionally blurred photos SUCK – No doubt about that one dude)

  57. A Dude And His Watches says:

    Dude!  You aren't wearing the Rolex!  Is that a Speedy?

  58. joe says:

    Kai, Ricoh GRIII?

  59. Admin Dragon-Map says:

    2:16 Dutch angels come from Germany. The German word for German is deutsch. There you have it.

    Btw. The word dutch used describe all non-romanic western european countries equally, but the importance of the Netherlands during the colonialism led to a slow fade of this broader meaning.

  60. bu kwok says:

    UK have vita lemon tea…?

  61. Ronnie Banerjee says:

    Can anyone tell me the probable F point of the lens being used at 4:57 (Basically inside the room scenes lol) plz!? can i get something like with f/2.8!?

  62. Sheik Yerbouti says:

    Is Skillshare Squarspace‘s cousin?

  63. Tommy Cortes says:

    2:41 look a all tho chiken

  64. Jerk Of All Trades says:

    You’re the first asian with a big dick

  65. xxcinderellaxx says:

    O M G this video is so funny! love it!

  66. santiago ortiz says:

    my god kai, drink some water for christ sake

  67. Airam Dato-on says:

    Is VitaSoy not a sponsor yet?

  68. Samson says:

    1:46 You a Watford supporter Kai?

  69. mathew beeny says:

    I love this guys voice

  70. Steve H says:

    Nice to see you using a bit of THE ALMIGHTY HORNETS ground in this video. 🙂

  71. zoolook888 says:

    Massively off topic….but where did you get the camo jacket?

  72. Jon S says:

    Great Rainman impression just by movement alone. LOL

  73. tectorama says:

    One thing I detest, is the use of ND filters to make moving water look like candy floss. Every magazine seems to have
    these photos in them, probably why I never buy one. ( A friend lends them to me.)
    If you need strange angles, do it in processing. The same with correcting the horizon.

  74. orion 2250 says:

    Buying a Nikon 7200..and finding out you have to…” tune….” your sharpness…

  75. Leafbreath says:

    7:00 My photography literally improved when I bought new gear. I never understand why people say not to do this. I never realized how limited my photography was until I bought more lenses and bought some flashes to have some control over my lighting. I would say the exact opposite go out and buy a few new lenses and flashes, then try to how to control lighting and how Lower to higher aperture affects your shots. I was using a stock lens and a 50-200mm for the longest time, because everyone said don't buy new gear focus on using what you have. But my skill was completely limited by those things and poor glass.

  76. Bert T. says:

    "That moist spongy bit." 😆

  77. Pradeep Kanchan says:

    Is it me or do all brits share the same condescending tone they picked up in a UK Public School

  78. Stephen Sliger says:

    Rofl at rain man.

  79. Adam Roy says:

    Oh, you.

  80. Dwiyana Syahputri says:

    Kaiiiii, miss ur jokes!😂 Btw, I have I dayum blurred pink flower and somehow hundreds of people in VSCO love it. I mean really. Hundreds of likes and shares, 😌 Even me confused. I almost deleted it years ago.

  81. Galaxy Train says:

    Kai, I am sure you may hear this often, but i truly appreciate your birth and your willingness to guide those of us who are in a rabbit hole of technological world. You have inspired me to move forward with my desires to express my view or the world thru a lens. Your humor is satisfying whilst very witty with puns being priceless. The way you explain situations are very easy to comprehend and very entertaining as well, which keeps my interest going. I am a very insecure human in general, but with your virtual guidance, i don't have that physical insecurity or that feeling of being overwhelmed, i can pause you and come right back. When you work with Lok, it truly is like watching two genius's in such a natural element that encourages that push i need to get out there and practice. Thank you Kai.

  82. mikldude says:

    Absorbing some good tips while pissing myself laughing 🙂 .

  83. Cruzboy says:

    I still haven't figured out how to take the lense cap off. Make a tutorial plz.

  84. Tarwinder Saran says:

    thanks for excellent advice

  85. Poke Brother says:

    But … I want to do mistakes…

  86. lightmarepeno says:

    There are* a lot of lessons to be learned. NOT there "is" a lot of lessons to be learned.

    Keep at it, English is a difficult language 🙂

  87. Tamer Bekir says:

    Hey we have the same g drive!

  88. mr frank says:

    2:48 I started drinking VO whenever I shoot,and it doesn't help my framing, or my horizons. But I really enjoy photography now.
    Thanks for the tip, Kai!

  89. hazard1024 says:

    I wonder if anyone has ever taken a picture of kai "oh look a typical Asian photo geek." when he does the punny bits of these videos.

  90. Enrique says:

    Im not used with kai in this hairstyle

  91. The Beard Dream says:

    So, if I’m using a 16mm lens, my shutter speed only needs to be 1/16th of a second?

  92. Fardous Ahmmad Sifat says:

    can u please give me a camera ??😭amy DSLR camera or mirrorless camera.. please

  93. Jon C says:

    I see photos of models on Instagram all the time by supposed "professionals" with cut off limbs. Mainly legs being cropped just below the knee. You think it should either be a long head to toe shot or a closer waist up? Are these so-called photographers actually pros or are they just pervs with a camera and no skill?

  94. madmaxx72 says:

    It's funny that beginning photographers are mostly focused on things like how sharp their lenses are,. When that doesn't matter. A sharp image of a fuzzy concept is a bad image no matter how sharp your lense is!!!

  95. Fu Sensei says:

    4:20 "…Or add a LOK more to the photo"

  96. automaticchic says:

    The intro though hahahaaa omg i laughed alot watching this😂😂😂 and learned at the same tim😏

  97. noths pasha says:

    Biggest mistake I made was leaving my camera bag open and I ended up losing my spare battery but luckily I noticed and I went back and looked for it and someone had put the on the nearest wall and put a note on saying "found your camera battery and said next time be careful". I cried at this because of the kindness of someone.

  98. Awppenheimer says:

    2:30 or Stranger Things

  99. Don Soley says:

    Great stuff..!

  100. Funny Stuff says:

    Why are you squinting in all your videos Englishman?

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