Five inexpensive ideas to get started with your new camera!

Posted on Jan 15 2014 - 7:41am by Traci


I had a friend email me about getting a new camera and if I had any ideas on how to get better with her camera and learn some things without spending a lot! The internet is such a wealth of knowledge, and there ARE actually a few places I have learned some photography tips from, and I am excited to share them with you! If you DID happen to get a new camera for Christmas {or recently!} I AM SO EXCITED FOR YOU! *hehe*

{Note: I will include links in this post. They are NOT however affiliate related whatsoever. Just places I have used and loved. I haven’t been paid even so much as a penny! 🙂

FIRST: I LOVE i heart faces. They have a community forum, where you can talk and ask questions, and a DAILY email you can subscribe to with incredible tutorials for anything and everything photography related. I have learned some amazing editing tricks, posing ideas, and pretty much anything and everything from them. How cool is it to get an email with free photography tutorials? Sign up, it’s worth it! I just made a folder in my email and save the emails in there, and when I have time to do some photography learning, I go back and read the latest! They also have fun contests you can enter, monthly challenges, and really neat monthly ideas to get your creative-ness going! Love them!

SECONDLY: Get a book, a book that knows your specific camera inside and out- that goes into more detail than your manual that came with your camera. When I got my first camera I thought, “Oh! I just need to read the manual and then I will be good to go”. No way! My sister gave me a book by David Busch Canon Rebel T4i. Oh my goodness, LOVE it. I am not saying you have to get HIS book. But I am saying that it is a GREAT idea to get another book that knows your camera inside and out, but also describes things in a more creative way. The people who write the manuals are thinking scientifically right? You kind of need someone to describe things who wants a cute picture of your kiddo, too. These books go into a LOT more depth, and make everything a LOT clearer. I really enjoyed David Busch’s books, but you can check out other authors, too. Another thing that is great, these books cost about $20 bucks! Pretty much everyone can afford that, right? Just make sure to get the right camera model 😉

THIRD: Take a photography class from a nearby community college. Not very expensive, and gets you to HAVE to do assignments and get better! I unfortunately have not been able to do this yet, but a lot of my friends have, and have loved it. Plus, it’s something you could do with friends to get out of the house! I know camera shops also offer photography classes. I am the type of person that sometimes really needs reminders to practice and do better. Taking a class is ideal for that! 🙂

FOURTH: Read articles online! There are TONS. I have a whole Pinterest board with great articles, tips and tricks, ideas, poses, etc. Take some time to read things online. There is so much out there that is free! And I love all the different perspectives/creative-ness/personalities that I get to learn from. It’s so nice to have so many wonderful photographers share their knowledge. One of my favorites is Kristen Duke Photography. She has some super fun photography articles {and seriously, check out her work, she rocks!} and some really inexpensive e-books to help you with photography. She also has other fun things on her site, too. But I love reading her photography articles!

FIFTH: Check out the library! I was amazed how many photography books are there! Even if they are older, and not quite as up to date, they will have GREAT information, plus, the books are free to borrow and read, sweet!! 🙂

Lastly, just keep learning and trying! Sometimes I get a little bummed because photography seems like a pretty expensive hobby. But really, there is a lot out there that is free, and there are a lot of really nice people willing to share and teach their talents. Yes, the equipment can get expensive, but, you can still get amazing pictures without spending a lot.

Stay tuned for my next post about editing! I have some favorite websites for free {yes FREE} editing tutorials, and free actions! {and also a tutorial coming up about actions, and how to use them!}

Happy Photographing!! 🙂





14 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Amy | Club Narwhal January 15, 2014 at 8:04 am - Reply

    Love these ideas! I just got my T4i last week and have had so much fun playing around with it. I'm waiting for next semester to start to see if I can snag a place in a local community college class.

  2. Rosey January 15, 2014 at 8:08 am - Reply

    I love the idea of taking a class at the local community college. That would be great for hands-on and text learning!

  3. Jayne Townsley January 15, 2014 at 8:56 am - Reply

    I use a Kodak digital camera that still uses AA batteries and it takes fabulous pictures. I keep wondering what my pictures would look like if I bought a better camera but it's all the gadgets that prevent me from doing it.

    • Traci January 15, 2014 at 11:28 am - Reply

      Jayne, I hear you! I feel like when you buy a new camera you spend a load of money and then feel like you need to spend a ton more to get good pictures. I don’t think that’s true though! I think you can get great pictures without spending a lot. I also actually buy my camera’s refurbished from the company {So on Canon’s website they have a refurbished section} Quite a bit cheaper and they have a 1 year warranty! My first was refurbished and works like a charm {Handed down to my sister} and my new refurbished seems like brand new too! Anyway! Just an idea 🙂 I am sure you have great pictures from your Kodak to! It’s have the pictures that counts, right? 🙂

  4. ladyboarder9669 January 15, 2014 at 9:35 am - Reply

    These are some fabulous tips! I have a nice canon i've never really fully learned to use! Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Traci January 15, 2014 at 11:26 am - Reply

      You are so welcome! I think sometimes we get frustrated because you don’t want to spend a lot of money learning, but it’s amazing how much information is our there for free! 🙂

  5. Roxanne January 15, 2014 at 10:08 am - Reply

    Great tips and ideas for someone like me, the photographically challenged. I totally agree with your 4th tip! I've pinned great photography information there. Thanks

    • Traci January 15, 2014 at 11:30 am - Reply

      Thanks Roxanne! It’s fun to learn from so many different perspectives as far as photography goes. LOVE Pinterest {probably too much! 🙂

  6. Brandi January 15, 2014 at 10:08 am - Reply

    These are great tips and even though I've had my camera for awhile now, there's still so much I need to learn. I really need to look into a book for it and take the time to learn more 🙂

  7. snymed January 15, 2014 at 10:59 am - Reply

    Thanks for your tips! I had never thought to look for photography tips online, but there should be a treasure trove of information on the internet.

    Jenna em

  8. Cat | Fit Armadillo January 15, 2014 at 1:22 pm - Reply

    I really need to get back to figuring out my camera. I've gotten super lazy and just use my husband's smartphone 🙁 Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. Joanna Sormunen January 15, 2014 at 5:07 pm - Reply

    I didn't know about i heart faces. Thank you so much! I want to get better and this will help me so much!

  10. Michelle F. January 15, 2014 at 8:42 pm - Reply

    I definitely need to go to the library to check out some books. Could use help with my piectures.

  11. History of Camera February 4, 2014 at 10:25 am - Reply

    I've had my camera for awhile now, there's still so much I need to learn. I think you can get great pictures without spending a lot. I also actually buy my camera's refurbished from the company Quite a bit cheaper and they have a 1 year warranty! My first was refurbished and works like a charm and my new refurbished seems like brand new too! Anyway! Just an idea 🙂

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