How to Ensure Sharpness

Many photographers struggle with keeping their photos tack sharp. This is not really a simple task as it revolves around multiple aspects of taking a photo. Young photographers think that there is something wrong with their camera that is causing the photos to come out less sharp than all those National Geographic ones, but while that may be a factor it’s not always the reason.

If you want to take sharper photos of your subjects, here are some things to try:

  1. Use a Fast Shutter Speed

One of the most obvious things to make sure is that your camera’s shutter speed is fast enough for moving subjects or handheld shots. It is generally recommended that you keep a higher shutter speed number than your lens’ focal length when shooting handheld. So if you’re shooting with a 50mm lens, keep your shutter speed more than 1/50th of a second.

  1. Close the Aperture

A lot of the time, the reason for a not so sharp photo is a wide open aperture. Not only are many lenses soft at their widest aperture, a wide aperture also makes the actual area in focus smaller. So try closing down the aperture a little bit to ensure that you get everything you want in focus.

  1. Set Focus Point Manually

Don’t always rely on the camera’s zone focusing capabilities when taking photos. Rather, select your own focus points so that your camera knows exactly where you need it to focus. You can also focus manually to make sure you’re getting exactly what you want.

  1. Stabilize Your Camera

Even if your lens comes with OIS, it’s always better to use a tripod or something else for stability. Even the slightest amounts of movement or vibration can cause your camera to make a photo blur, especially in lower light.

  1. Keep a Low ISO

The higher ISO value you use, the more noise creeps into your photo. This makes a perfectly focused photo look grainy and soft. So try to balance your shutter speed and aperture value in a way that allows you to use the minimum possible ISO.


So before you go throwing out your camera because it’s not taking sharp enough photos, gives these tips a try and see if anything helps. Just be sure to keep your camera steady, use a fast shutter speed, close down your aperture a little, and use a lower ISO. Chances are that these tricks will allow you to take much better and sharper photos.