Photography is an incredibly diverse subject: from different photography genres and styles to lighting, equipment, posing, model direction, location scouting and styling, photography novices often face a jungle of information and possibilities.
If there is a basic interest in learning about photography, a lot of questions need to be answered: Where do I start? Which camera? Which lens? These are usually the first questions that photography beginners ask themselves. Especially the technical side - which in my opinion is completely overestimated, but should also be understood fundamentally - is mostly overtaxed at the beginning.
There is no "right" way to start taking pictures. A passion and certain curiosity for the subject are of course a fundamental prerequisite, but how you walk your way with the camera is always individual. I love that each photographer works differently than the next and the results are always different - everyone sees things differently.
Therefore the following advices are only to be understood as possible approaches, which you can take up or deepen. As an autodidact I learned a lot of this knowledge through research and experimentation. And there we are already with the first, and perhaps most important advice:
#1 Practice makes perfect
The saying "Practice makes perfect" also applies to photography - without much diligence in constant training and experimentation, the chances are slim that you will achieve results that are more than just a random snapshot. Always carry a camera with you - which one really doesn't matter, even if it's your smartphone - and familiarize yourself with different lighting conditions and situations. This is the only way to get to know yourself and your equipment properly and to react more flexibly to people or objects in front of your lens.
#2 The camera doesn't matter
"Your camera takes great pictures" - probably every photographer has had to deal with hearing this sentence. When talking about a painting, it's not the brushes that paint the pictures, it's the artist. Our equipment is only as good as we are. A camera is nothing more than a tool that you use to realize your creative idea - and especially as a beginner, it doesn't matter which model you practice with. Take what you have at home, be it analog, digital or your smartphone - and follow advice #1. That doesn't mean you can't buy a new camera at some point - just get to know the basics of your equipment before upgrading and expecting marvels from your camera that you have to do yourself.
#3 Bye Bye Automatic Mode
Oh, the technicalities. Invented to make photographing easier for us, the automatic mode makes all the relevant decisions for our photo for us - and usually inevitably triggers the flash or other funny ideas.
Therefore: Go to manual mode to learn to control aperture, exposure time and iso (light sensitivity).
If you don't feel like learning this alone in a quiet room - here you will find the current workshop dates.
#4 Prime lenses - the best zoom are your legs
Start your path into photography with a fixed focal length. Most photo stores sell kits, that include a camera body plus a kit lens. In many cases it is a zoom lens with an inferior (for example f5.6) aperture. Especially for beginners this is often not a good idea: the zoom lens requires an understanding of the different incorporated focal lengths - in addition, the dim zoom lens makes it difficult to take pictures in difficult lighting conditions, especially indoors, which quickly leads to frustration.
Advantages of prime lenses:
They are affordable, especially for crop sensor cameras. Even buying a used fixed focal length is not a bad idea - ideally pick up the lens personally and examine it for scratches and traces of use.
They are powerful. Most fixed focal lengths have an aperture of f1.8 or f2.8 - this opens up many new possibilities in working with natural light and low light conditions.
They require movement. Activity of the photographer is the be-all and end-all - many of my workshop participants* stand rooted before a person or object they want to photograph. A fixed focal length requires movement - according to the saying "The legs are the best zoom". As a beginner you get to know different perspectives, become more active and more creative in your own shots.