Why are my pictures blurry?

There are a few factors that will contribute to the quality and sharpness of a photograph:

  • Light
  • Movement of the subject (children & pets especially)
  • Movement of the photographer
  • Quality of the camera (phone, DSLR…)
  • Camera settings (ISO, aperture, shutter speed)

Let’s consider the worst-case scenario:  you are trying to photograph a moving child in a poorly lit room with a phone camera. I have been in this situation and there is no way I am going to get a sharp image!

What can I do to take better photographs?

The good news is that you do not need to get a pro camera to take sharp photographs. Of course, if you have been hired to photograph a wedding, it’s important to have the right camera and lenses for the job. Photographing the bride coming down the aisle in a dark church require expertise and the proper equipment.

However, you can keep photographing your children with your phone and get good results.

The tips below are simple ways you can improve your photographs and have a higher rate of sharp photographs vs blurry ones. You can obviously combine all the tips!

  1. Get more light. The more light you have available, the more chances you have to get a sharp photograph. Outdoor is best, but you can also photograph your children by a window at home. Even with a phone camera and a moving child, you should be able to get sharp photographs if the amount of light is good.
  2. Use flash. Flash is a great way to get sharp photographs indoor. However, the result isn’t always very nice (white faces, red eyes, change of atmosphere…).
  3. Wait until the subject is still. Depending on what you are trying to capture, you can wait until your subject is still to take the photo.
  4. Don’t move. If you are moving while trying to take a photograph, this will also result in motion blur.
  5. Get a better camera. If you like to photograph the everyday moments of your children inside your home, chances are that the light won’t always be enough to use your phone. If you tried all the other tips and still can’t get sharp images, it might be time to upgrade your gear to the next level.
  6. Learn to use your camera. Maybe you already have a good camera but never got around to learning the settings. You can choose to use the AUTO mode, but knowing how ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed affect your photographs will help you take better photographs.

Extra tip: now, when I have the worst case scenario (phone – low light – moving child), I take a video!

Dublin-based photography workshops for parents

If you own a DSLR but are still not sure how to best use it and would like to document those everyday moments of your life with your family, register your interest below.

Remember, the images that you’re creating now will be absolutely priceless to your children one day.

Sign up to be the first to know when the next workshop will take place.


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