Once you begin to look at the world for photographs, everything begins to take on new character and interest. You become differently aware of your surroundings, looking at them with a fresh eye. Your neighbors' gardens, the office buildings you pass every day, even common objects like coins or key chains—all can make compelling images.
The Caledonia is one of many apartment buildings newly constructed along Manhattan's High Line.
Photo Tip: Simple works of art are all around you. Sometimes all it takes is careful framing or shooting from a different perspective to bring out an arresting juxtaposition of shapes, colors, or textures.
An English version of a biography of Mao Tse Tung sits on a table in a train.
Photo Tip: When photographing still life compositions, you can rely on natural light alone if you position the subject near a window. Curtains soften the sunlight, and the natural shadows fall in the same direction.
A Japanese maple tree is surrounded by flowers in an Oregon garden.
Photo Tip: Gardens are ready-made objects of beauty, but photographing gardens takes some careful crafting. Find something significant to catch the eye—a figure, a prominent physical feature, a pond, or a splash of color.
The ripening seeds of a water lily reveal patterns and shapes that occur in nature.
Photo Tip: When photographing gardens, find an element that interrupts a pattern. It might be one tree trunk of a different color or a protruding rock that breaks the symmetry of concentric circles in the water.
A teenage girl poses for a portrait on a stormy Nebraska day.
Photo Tip: When you photograph fashion, every element of the photo—the model, the clothes, the hair, the composition, and even the angle—contributes to the vision. Think about the pose; make sure your model knows what you’re after.