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Updated - October 24, 2018

Cliff's Photo Tips
- Move on to Cliff's Photo Tips 2
Photos preserve memories of good times and special occasions, all of which happen only once. With a little extra effort, you can make your photo collection one to be proud of ... and you'll be rewarded as your collection grows. For 55+ years, photography has been such a fun hobby for me, with the added benefit of preserving memories of my family and our many vacations across the U.S. and beyond. - Cliff

The Next Level

Photography can be a fun hobby when you take it to the next level. You'll need a digital camera that can produce quality results far beyond a smartphone, with features that put you in complete control of results. With camera in hand, you can search out unique opportunities for beautiful or unusual shots beyond just a typical point and shoot result. Vacations become much more than just sightseeing when you add photography to the mix. To get an idea of what you can do, check out Cliff's Photo Tips 2.

Getting Started

Here are some suggestions for enhancing your photography knowledge and skills:

)  Read your camera user guide front to back to learn about its features and capabilities.

2)  Buy a basic digital photography book to learn about composition, lighting and photo techniques.

3)  You can pick up a lot of knowledge from photography magazines and web sites.

4)  For better results, don't just point and shoot. Think about each shot to make it count.

5)  For complete control over results, use photo editing software to enhance, resize and organize photos.

6)  Consider photo albums to share photos. This may seem 'old school', but it really is a great way to pass on a visual family history to your children and generations thereafter. PCs and smart devices have storage limitations and risk of loss. Photo albums are a great alternative. With a $100 ink jet printer, you can print quality photos for your albums.

Back Up Your Photos

To protect your photos, back up PCs, smart phones or tablets to portable media such as DVD, USB flash drive or external disk drive. A friend of mine recently lost five years of photos when his hard drive crashed ... every photo gone forever. All it takes is a failed computer disk, failed device storage or a lost/stolen device. Don't let this happen to you. Do an internet search to learn how to back up each device you use. It will be well worth your time!

Preserve Your Memories

You can preserve old family photos, slides, 8mm movies, VHS videos by converting them to DVDs. An internet search will turn up stores in your area that perform this service. For example, check out Costco Photo Center. Prices start at $20. I had many hours of old slides and 8mm/VHS movies converted to DVDs for viewing on a TV or computer, then gave a set to each of my sons. This is a priceless gift for your family.

A Little Humor

This 'Pearls Before Swine' comic strip sums it up for the casual photographer!

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