Photography Cheat Sheet: How to Shoot Sharper Photos

Frustrated with blurry, unfocused, or hazy-looking snaps? This photography cheat sheet has some useful tips to make sure you get sharper photos from now on. 

Among the biggest frustrations of photographers is a well-composed shot ruined by blur or lack of focus. Sometimes, you can get away with it if the blur is only minimal and hardly noticeable. Otherwise, when the shot calls for sharpness, even the slightest blur can throw off the mood or message of the photo. As with many things about photography, there are some big and small changes that you can make to ensure optimum sharpness in your photos. Today’s photography cheat sheet offers some suggestions for this purpose.

The cheat sheet below is part of the tutorial by landscape photographer and travel-guide maker Dali of on how to take sharper photos for your next trip. Don’t get us wrong — blur can be used to produce creative results (hence the term “creative blur”). But if it’s not your intended result, especially for important shots like events, headshots, or travel photos, you’ll only be disappointed with your photos.

Some of the tips listed above are simple but effective for keeping your photos sharp and in focus. Using a faster shutter speed, for example, will allow you to freeze movement and avoid motion blur. If your subject or shooting situation calls for longer exposures, using a sturdy tripod will keep your camera steady. Your camera’s image stabilization feature will also increase your chances of avoiding or at least minimizing motion blur.

Another important tip is to do away with unnecessary lens filters. While those can significantly improve the quality of your photos, using the wrong ones or using them when they’re not required will only produce poor results. If you’re thinking of using a filter, we suggest checking out this photography cheat sheet as well.