Photography 101

There are already many books and guides on landscape photography and image-editing software — so why another one? One reason is to present a new perspective, not from the full-time professional using expensive pro equipment and traveling to exotic locales, but from a fellow amateur. There is no question the experiences that professionals share are invaluable and definitely required learning for any serious amateur. However, the intent of this book is to create a different experience by changing the usual teacher-to-student paradigm to a practical-minded amateur sharing many years of real-world experiences with other fellow amateurs.

Make the basics of photography a breeze.

Discover the world of beginner photography with helpful tips, tricks, and articles on everything from the basics of camera equipment and settings to info on the most current terminology, creating photo art, portraiture, bokeh, blur and other techniques, pro editing pointers, and so much more. Read on to get all the details.

Learn photography basics.

Whether you’re a total beginner or a passionate hobbyist, get the lowdown on photography basics. Discover how to use a camera, learn about different types of photography, and explore some of the most effective techniques.

Beginner photographer holding their DSLR camera, learning how to use the camera and its settings.

Adopt the language.

Take a peek at this cheat sheet, and you’ll be able to discuss photography with everyone from hobbyists to professionals.

Stay up-to-date with important photo terms

Fisherman on the right side of the frame, surrounded by blue fishing nets, showing the photography rule of photo composition.

Know the rules of composition.

Perfectly capture your creative vision by learning how to frame your subject or scene.

Delve into the details of photo composition

Photographer holding up their camera to frame a photo of their model in the camera preview.

Get tips for taking better photos.

Follow a few simple guides and see how it transforms and elevates your creations.

Explore ways to improve your photos

Understand the exposure triangle.

Three camera settings form the exposure triangle: shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. You’ll be on track to take a top-quality photo when you get them working together.

Shutter speed

Adjust shutter speed to get crisp images of fast-moving objects or capture stunning blur effects.

Read more about shutter speed


Use your camera’s aperture settings to give images a realistic sense of depth.

F-stop Settings: Master this foundational skill


Control the light your camera lets in to brighten or darken an image.

Learn how ISO affects exposure and more

Photography basics: Equipment and settings.

Getting to know the basics of photography is the best way to get started. The first step is to learn about your camera, its main settings, and key photography terms.

DSLR camera with a detachable lens and other basic camera accessories.

Get the right camera.

Most modern smartphones have high-quality cameras, but if you’re focusing on photography for beginners, a DSLR camera might be the perfect place to start. You can adapt it with detachable lenses to create different effects, plus DSLRs boast bigger sensors that let you create more detailed images.

Discover the basics of the DSLR camera

Photographer holding a camera lens in front of a city landscape.

Pick the right lens.

Whether shooting expansive landscapes or zooming in on the details, the right lens can help get unique effects.

Close-up camera lens with settings to adjust focal length.

Experiment with focal length.

Having more lenses that offer various focal lengths means you’ll have more options and chances to experiment creatively. Once you master the use of different lenses and focal lengths, you’ll be able to make the most of both landscapes, portrait shots, and close-ups. You’ll also better understand how to capture the details of a scene to really make it pop.

Perfect your photo art.

Now you’ve got the foundations of photography down, let’s get you practicing and perfecting the craft. Check out these beginner-friendly guides and get going. Better yet, you can achieve all these looks on your smartphone.

Person walking with an umbrella on the left side of the frame — an example of the rule of thirds in photography.

Rule of thirds

Use the rule of thirds to get the right proportions and angles in your images.

Building architecture formed by geometrical shapes.


Embrace the shapes in your environment and make them shine in your shots.

Uncover the world of geometric shapes

Mountain landscape running from the front of the frame to the horizon — an example of leading lines in photography.

Leading lines.

Lead the eye through your image by perfectly positioning lines within the frame.

Learn photography techniques.

Learn from professional photographers schooled in various techniques and styles. Read on to explore top tips and advice so you nail every shot.

Photographer holding their camera against a blurred background, demonstrating the depth of field photography technique.

Shallow depth of field.

Master the art of focus with our tips on one of the best-known photography techniques.

Explore how depth of field adds dimension

Distant view of a blurred cityscape, demonstrating the bokeh photography effect.

Bokeh effect.

Blur backgrounds beautifully with this simple but mesmerizing photography effect.

Discover what playing with bokeh can do

Overhead view of a city landscape in golden hour lighting.

Golden hour.

Master the exposure triangle by focusing on the golden hour’s soft light.

See why photo pros love the golden hour

Edit like a pro.

Capturing all the details you saw in the moment can be super tricky. Luckily, you can achieve a lot with some tactical edits. Follow these step-by-step tutorials and discover the art of quick-win editing.

Brighten images

When you’re not 100% happy with your photo’s lighting, simply adjust it to match your vision.

Bring out the bright details with a photo editor

Enhance your photos

If you feel you’ve lost some texture in your image, use powerful editing tools to bring it back.

Get familiar with Adobe Express photo tools

Blur an image

Experiment with different points of focus by introducing impactful blur effects.

Blur static images for movement and more

Apply a double exposure effect

Experiment with double exposure using digital software to make your work stand out.

Learn how double exposure blends two into one

Create multiple focal points

Stack several photos together so more than one element sits in perfect focus.

Practice focal length stacking to make your point

Remove chromatic aberration

It can be a nuisance, but there are ways to use chromatic aberration creatively.

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