Are Your Photos UNSHARP? Here’s What to Do (VIDEO)

Nothing spoils an otherwise great shot more than failing to achieve precise focus. You can compose a scene properly, nail exposure, and capture beautiful colors, but if the image is soft all is for naught.

If you’re struggling with unsharp images the quick video below is for you. There are a myriad of reasons a photo may be soft, from improper camera settings to a variety of technical mistakes. In this tutorial you’ll learn a dozen ways to identify and correct these problems.

Katelyn James is a successful wedding photographer based in Richmond, VA. She’s also a popular instructor and says, one of the questions she receives most, is “why aren’t my photos sharp?” We recommend having pen and paper handy when watching this fast-moving episode, so you can jot down a few notes to help determine the cause of your soft results.

James provides a comprehensive checklist of the most common reasons for unsharp images, and she explains simple solutions for each. She begins with a discussion of exposure settings, and explains how to determine if the shutter speed you’ve chosen is too slow for the task at hand.

Proper camera settings are also important, and sometimes the culprit is using an incorrect focus mode or choosing the wrong focus point. As you’ll see, these common problems are really easy to rectify.

Other potential issues on James’ list include incorrect focusing technique, an aperture setting that doesn’t provide sufficient depth of field, and problems that occur due to haze from the sun.

Unfortunately, sometimes the cause of unsharp images is a poor quality lens, or one that needs to be cleaned, serviced or calibrated. It's also possible that the root cause is dirt on the camera’s sensor that needs to be resolved.

There are more helpful videos on James’ YouTube channel, so be sure and take a look. And check out the recent tutorial we posted from another photographer, revealing five more problems that ruin photos and how to fix them.