Essential Pittsburgh
6:24 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Tips for Turning a Simple Snapshot into Something Unforgettable

Credit George Lange / Lange Studios

With cell phones or tablets outfitted with cameras, everyone’s a photographer. So how do you capture that perfect image? 

Famed photographer, and Pittsburgh native, George Lange has been published in Esquire, Glamour and the NY Times among others.

His book The Unforgettable Photograph offers ideas, tips, and secrets for taking better photos.

 “Five or six years ago we went from being event photographers, photographing birthdays and holidays and vacations, to photographing our lives everyday. We started carrying around these incredible phones with great digital capture parts to them. And we started capturing our personal histories daily...and those pictures are really interesting.”

So how do you capture those mundane moments in a way that’s interesting?

First of all, move around. “One of the things that happens when we take pictures is we get lead feet. We don’t move around, especially when you’re photographing pets, or children, if you get down on their level you see the world differently. You get a whole different perspective that’s always more interesting than sitting up at an adult perspective looking down.”

At the heart of the book and Lange’s insight on taking great photos is the importance of recognizing memorable moments, and finding new ways of capturing them. “We’re photographing our desserts, we’re photographing sunsets, we’re photographing what a ride at Kennywood Park looks like, rather than our experience with the sunset...what did the dessert taste like? I’m much more concerned with what it tasted like than what it looks like.” said Lange

So how do you convey that in a photo? Lange suggests focusing on how you feel in the moment and take lots of pictures from different angles. Then when it comes to sharing the moment on social media or elsewhere, wait until the experience is over and pick the photo that does the best job of putting you back into that moment.

George Lange is based in NYC but teaches online classes on creative photography.

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