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Seedsman Photo Cup – How to Take the Best Photograph on a Budget

We are a month into the inaugural Seedsman Photo Cup and we have been overwhelmed by the response so far. With almost 4,000 entries and still over 4 weeks to go until the first prize winners are announced, there is plenty of time for you to get involved.

The photography skills of entrants so far are wide ranging; we have had submissions from professional photographers and complete amateurs alike.

It is important to remember that we are not looking for a work of art – the professional qualities of the photo only make up a small part of what the judges are looking for.

However, to help you gain that extra advantage, we have compiled some handy tips below to ensure that you take the best photograph you can, even if you don’t have any professional equipment or any money to spend!

Utilize the Light

Lighting is one of the most important factors in ensuring your photo looks its brilliant best, whether inside or outside.

Inside Shots

If you are keen to take a photograph of your plants or other cannabis related materials inside, you can utilize lamps or torches to enhance your submission.

Firstly, you can use a background light, which will improve the clarity of the photograph and offer some perception of depth. See in the example below how one single background light can make a huge difference to the overall appearance of an image.

Secondly, it is important to use a key, front-facing light. This offers a nice balance to the image. However, it is important to test the distance of the light from the image subject, as the further away the light, the more diffused it can become.

When a background and key light are used, your final image looks very impressive. The example below demonstrates this.

Outside Shots

If you are taking photographs outside, there are specific times of the day when the natural light from the sun will complement your image.

The ‘Golden Hours’ for photographers tend to be the 2 hours after sunrise and the 2 hours before sunset. The sun is still fairly low in the sky and doesn’t cause contrasting shadows. Instead, it offers soft, complimentary lighting.

If the day turns decidedly cloudy and the sun is nowhere to be seen, don’t worry. Cloudy, gloomy days produce soft, natural light that adds an atmospheric element to your shot.

Finally, if you want to take your shot at night, try and select an evening where the moon is at its fullest and brightest. This will offer a unique light palette which could enhance your image spectacularly.

Use a Tripod

I know, I know – not everyone has, or can afford to buy a camera tripod for the sole purpose of entering our Photo Cup!

If you can find a cheap one online, great! However, there are plenty of ways to stabilise your camera or phone by utilizing things you have around the house.

The reason why using a real or makeshift tripod is so important is that it ensures that there is no blur to your image.

One you have your ‘tripod’ in place, ready to take the shot, switch your camera to timer mode. This will allow you 5-10 seconds to move out of the way of the tripod, ensuring optimum stillness.

Think Differently

Due to the number of entries that we anticipate to receive, and have received already, it is important for your photograph to stand out from the crowd, in order to catch the judges’ and voter’s eyes.

While we love seeing shots of the stages of plant growth, we are also keen to see some imaginative, creative ideas.

For more inspiration, take a look at our ‘What Photos Should I Upload’ blog here.

Take Time to Edit

You don’t need to be a master at Photoshop to get the best out of your image. Most phones and cameras enable you to auto-enhance, crop, apply filters and adjust the light and colour of your image.

Take some time to play around with all of these options until you feel your photo is looking its best. This should help your submission stand out from the crowd.

The Seedsman Photo Cup offers you the chance to win cash and prizes totalling up to $40,000. It’s super easy to enter. Simply head to our Photo Cup page and upload your image!

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With an international team of writers and over a decade of experience in the industry, Seedsman aim to bring you the very latest in Cannabis news from across the globe.

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