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Advanced Photography Tips, Tricks & Secrets

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Improve your photography with the tips in this video! Even if you’re an advanced photographer, I can almost guarantee that you haven’t heard all of them before, because some aren’t found in any book or website. These are my personal favorite tips, tricks, and secrets that I’ve figured out for my own photography.

I mostly tried to include time-savers to make your life easier as a photographer, but there are also some specific tips about composition that I’ve found useful over the years. Either way, before adding it to the video, I asked myself how common the tip actually was, and I didn’t include it if it was too popular. So, they should be useful even if you’re already a pro.

Just a heads up that I mainly photograph landscapes myself, so the tips here do tend to be in that direction. But I made sure to include techniques for other genres like portraiture and wildlife photography, too.

If you have any photography secrets of your own, let us know in the comments, and someone may find it useful!

~Spencer
https://instagram.com/spencercoxphoto/

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This Post Has 37 Comments

  1. Photography Life

    Thanks for watching! Here's two of my other favorite tricks/secrets that didn't make the video:

    1. On whatever camera you use, modify the file name to something unique rather than the default "IMG_1234" structure. For example, I either name mine after the camera (like "NZ6_1234" for the Nikon Z6) or after a generic word like "SKY_1234" or my last name "COX_1234." That way, it's immediately apparent which photos on my hard drive are mine, and which camera they're from, with a lower chance of ever duplicating file names.

    2. When you're shooting the Milky Way, it can be annoying to wait 20-30 seconds to see your photo each time when you're trying to figure out your composition. Personally, I set my camera to ultra-high ISO values like 51,200 and very short exposures like 1 or 2 seconds. These photos have horrendous image quality, but they make it literally 10x quicker to try out different compositions. Once I find the composition I like, I switch back to my usual camera settings of 20-30 seconds at a more reasonable ISO.

    If you have any tricks of your own, let us know below!

  2. Sonika Agarwal

    Very useful tips. I usually shoot 3-4 videos, and used to get pretty confused. Now I click a blank picture between my takes, and it solves my problem.

  3. Grephus Ingati

    I like this dude he simplifies every detail for any photographer…

  4. sigsegv111

    Hello Spencer .. thanks for your video, I like it … I dare to say that you've forgot for the very most important trick that needs to mentioned .. maybe you could make another video revolving about that matter … in my humble opinion, the very most important trick is to have a `strong workflow', yes, the strong workflow for everything .. workflow that is trained and settled by intentional practising .. workflow, that covers everything, starting with every move you do while changing your lens, going through fixed order and steps you do while adjusting the camera for the scenery that you're about to shoot and ending with how you lay down your backpack and organize yourself and your gear on the shooting site .. there's nothing worse than to lose your perfect moment because your chaotic activity to set up scene takes 5 minutes instead of 2 and in the process you put your lens in danger anyway, because you don't have the time to put on a back and front caps because you're in hurry and don't know what to do afore

  5. Yoan Mitov

    If using a mirrorless camera, simply pick a B&W shooting mode and enjoy the world in B&W. No need to wonder how the photo will look after converting it 🙂

  6. Douglas Quick

    Excellent Tips Spencer. I have reviewed a number of your videos and am blown away by your knowledge and your skill at presenting that makes it all so easy to understand. Thanks so much !

  7. Bryan Chen

    nice video. I carry camera everyday but don't know what to shot in city. can't find the "impact“, any suggestions?

  8. Lenin Moreno

    Great tips, thanks. I learned a new thing or two 😀

  9. Craig C

    Great tips, thanks! I'm interested in more details on astrophotography / capturing great Milky Way shots. Mainly setup tips (noise reduction settings needed, if any – max exposure times before stars blur – etc.). I just found out I live fairly close to a very low light pollution state park, so astrophotography is definitely in my future. 🙂

  10. Imtiyaz K.

    By far the most underrated YouTube channel on photography. Spenser you are absolutely brilliant. Every trick you mentioned is truly helpful. I love your hands man. They are pure artists hands, I don't know if anyone has ever mentioned this to you. You are naturally gifted and extremely talented. May your tribe grow, boy.

  11. Vikas Saraf

    Bro u are awesome!! Glad I am spending a lot of time on ur website!!

  12. Juul Sam

    Really love the double the distance method! What is the maximum focal length you can use this focusing method? Thanks!

  13. Karthick Hrisk

    Need your help in buying a camera, for bird and animal photography mirroless is good option or not. If DSLR I am planning for D850 and mirror less means z7. Also what is your thought of sony mirroless A7r111

  14. Eric Rose

    Very useful, Spencer, as usual. All the Best from The Bahamas 😎

  15. John -TKA

    If ones lenses have a focus-hold button, (as my Sony & Olympus lenses do) then there's another "best of both worlds" approach to back-button focusing; you can leave auto-focus assigned to the shutter button for general convenience – but then override it, as required, simply by holding the button on the lens. This approach is also do-able by using one of the camera buttons with "AF-ON" assigned to it.

  16. Wilburn Edwards

    Concerning "Bookending" for pano's, I do the same thing, only I use either an open hand or point my finger in a direction to start the series. Then a closed fist to stop the series. I do the same thing for focus stacking a series of photos.

  17. Echo Auxgen

    All good Advise!! Not shown but good info, everyone is trying to capture the comet use a pair of night vision binoculars, they are a new thing. As it gets fainter and further you will need help finding. Also it sometimes happens something gets in a eye (bug or dust) always carry a small mirror and a bottle of water!

  18. Hugo Zeelie

    New to the channel, but very happy to have found it! Very informative and your style keeps me 100% engaged 👊

  19. Marc Christensen

    Great stuff. Learned some new things. Back button focus really is the way to go

  20. f1remandg

    Excellent! Truly Excellent, probably one of the best ten mins I’ve ever spent, in relation to photography that is! DG U.K. New Forest

  21. Natalia Skorokhod

    Great video as always, and it's nice to see some tips which are not often mentioned.
    Also, love the humour, as usual 🙂

  22. David Powell

    Great assortment – something there for everyone!
    It never hurts to be reminded that edges matter. A lot. Perhaps you could discuss the Crop? – Nay Never! controversy sometime. FWIW I'm a cropper…

  23. David Arthur

    Spencer, these are very useful tips. Thanks for sharing. BTW, you are an EXCELLENT teacher of photography.

  24. Michelle Wesson

    SO happy I found this channel. Your teaching methods and tips are spot on for me. 💯

  25. Michael Vail

    Well done and very informative! Love the subtle humor as well. I'm glad I no longer have to use my tripod to remove people from a scene.

  26. scrptwic

    My main trick is to leave the camera settings always the same when I turn it off . I leave it in Apature Priority F-11 and change from there .

  27. Vishy Pai

    Your 1st Tip on Angle of view is interesting. It would be great if you could make an exclusive video on this trick with real life illustrations for different focal lengths. Thank you.

  28. Joshua Defibaugh

    For your angle of view, download the Artist’s Viewfinder Mark II. It’s a simple app for iPhone (and android too, I would assume) that lets you load your camera and lens and shows your field of view. I have a 24-70 range set up so I know how different focal lengths will look.

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