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Handy tips to make your everyday photography better

Are you a keen amateur snapper? Well, we've got some tips for you here in order to help ensure that you get the best results when it comes to your photos. And if you're in the mood for some further advice, check out our 10 top tips to help novices take better photos.

Don't let the opportunity pass you by

If you see someone you'd like to shoot, shoot first, then go over and thank them. If you're nice – and you flatter them a little bit – they won't have a problem. If you're traveling in a foreign country, however, you may want to ask first, though.

Shoot and shoot and shoot

In the old days, you had to pay for every photo you took and got developed. In the digital camera age, of course, you can snap all you want. Don't forget this – take as many shots as you can. It doesn't matter if most of them don't work – if one of them does, you just keep that and delete the rest.

Let things play out before you review

You'll often be tempted to review each shot on your LCD as soon as you take it. But while you're reviewing, you might be missing the next shot. Take all your shots while you can get them – and review them all at your leisure later.

Think like Michelangelo

There's an old joke about Michelangelo: When asked how he managed to produce a statue like David, he says he merely got rid of all the superfluous stone. Do whatever you have to do to get all the extraneous stuff out of the frame. Climb on a chair or lie down on the ground, or even throw the background out of focus.

Turn off your flash

If you can get away with it, turn the flash off. Photos look much better when taken in soft, natural light.

Go vertical

People are usually vertical, which is no doubt why vertical photographs are referred to as being in "portrait" mode. But nine times out of ten, when I see someone taking a photo of another person with a point-and-shooter, they're holding the camera horizontally. If you really want to capture the scene around a person, or capture a large group of people, then "landscape," or horizontal mode, is appropriate. But if you want to feature one or two or even three people in an image, consider turning your camera vertically and framing the image to take advantage of your subjects' natural orientation. Of course, if you have only a moment and aren't comfortable holding the camera vertically, go ahead and shoot with your camera held the way you're used to, and allow plenty of room around your subject(s) so you can crop the image later.