Take Better Photos With the Camera You Already Have- Tip #3: Be Aware of Your Background

Several months ago I gave a workshop on how to take better pictures with the camera you have. (You don't necessarily need to go out & buy a better camera to improve your photos!) I thought it would be something worth sharing here, so I'm going to share it in parts. Each Friday I'll share another part. If you have any photography-related questions that you'd like to see me answer, feel free to leave them in the comments
(or e-mail me). Perhaps I could do a post on a subject you're curious about.

Tip #3: Be Aware of Your Background

Taking a moment to assess the background and make a few quick changes can make a big difference to your photo! Here are a few helpful tips to remember:

1. Do Clear the Clutter: doing this is good if you’re taking a posed photo, and you want focus to be totally on your subject. Take a look at what’s behind the subject- is it a cluttered floor? Or a busy room in the background? Could you move to a plain wall or less distracting part of the house? Could you pick up a handful of toys (or kick them out of the frame of the photo ;) ?

Standing on a chair instantly removed the cluttered background from this photo-
now there's nothing competing for your attention!

2. Don’t Clear the Clutter: Sometimes photos of your children or family at home are all about capturing a moment in time. The messy background (toys on the floor, dinner just finished still on the table, kids’ masterpieces stuck to the fridge or wall) are a true part of that! So, don’t be afraid to have them in your photos either- sometimes something in the background is a great memory for later!

Don’t busy yourself with tidying up the background if it means missing the moment!

3. Distracting Elements: Before you click the photo, take a look at what you see- is there a tree or a pole “growing out of” someone’s head? Is there a random kid playing on the park behind your kid? Sometimes asking your subject to move a bit to the right or left makes a huge difference! Sometimes YOU can move a little, to change what’s directly behind your subject in the frame. If you’ve got a minute to make an adjustment like that, go for it!

I really wish I had paid attention to the distracting flower bed when I took this photo- asking the bride to scoot over a couple of feet would've saved me some time in Photoshop later!

I hope these tips will give you some helpful things to think of when you're taking pictures-paying attention to your background can change an "okay" photo into an awesome photo! :)

Share the photos you're taking with the tips in this series on Instagram, using the hashtag #RaisingMemories
You can find me on Instagram @RaisingMemories

Other Posts in the Series:

Tip #1: Using Your Flash
Tip #2: Natural Light
Tip #3: Be Aware of your Background
Tip #4: Perspective
Tip #5: Focus & Zoom
Tip #6: Rule of Thirds
Tip #7: No Cheese!

Each Friday I'll share another photography tip. If you have any photography-related questions that you'd like to see me answer, feel free to leave them in the comments- perhaps I could do a future post on a subject you're curious about.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Please subscribe or follow to keep in touch.


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment- I love reading them! :)
~Heather Lynne