Inexperienced writers are often at a loss to know how to secure good photographs. Professional photographers will, as a rule, produce the best results, but amateur writers often hesitate to incur the expense involved, especially when they feel uncertain about selling their articles. If prints can be obtained from negatives that photographers have taken for other purposes, the cost is so small that a writer can afford to risk the expenditure. Money spent for good photographs is usually money well spent.
Every writer of special articles should become adept in the use of a camera. With a little study and practice, any one can take photographs that will reproduce well for illustrations. One advantage to a writer of operating his own camera is that he can take pictures on the spur of the moment when he happens to see just what he needs. Unconventional pictures caught at the right instant often make the best illustrations.
The charges for developing films and for making prints and enlargements are now so reasonable that a writer need not master these technicalities in order to use a camera of his own. If he has time and interest, however, he may secure the desired results more nearly by developing and printing his own pictures.
Satisfactory pictures can be obtained with almost any camera, but one with a high-grade lens and shutter is the best for all kinds of work. A pocket camera so equipped is very convenient. If a writer can afford to make a somewhat larger initial investment, he will do well to buy a camera of the so-called "reflex" type.
Despite its greater weight and bulk, as compared with pocket cameras, it has the advantage of showing the picture full size, right side up, on the top of the camera, until the very moment that the button is pressed. These reflex cameras are equipped with the fastest types of lens and shutter, and thus are particularly well adapted to poorly lighted and rapidly moving objects.
A tripod should be used whenever possible. A hastily taken snap shot often proves unsatisfactory, whereas, if the camera had rested on a tripod, and if a slightly longer exposure had been given, a good negative would doubtless have resulted.
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