If you’ve purchased the Panasonic Lumix FZ1000, then congratulations! You’ve picked yourself one fantastic camera. If you haven’t, well, hopefully through this article, you’ll see why this camera is a must-have for any serious photographer.
The camera has a MOS sensor that offers 20.1 megapixels in resolution, guaranteed to produce fantastic images when you make the most of its capabilities. Panasonic equipped the FZ1000 with a fair 16x optical zoom and a maximum focal length of 146mm. Aside from that, the camera also has a 3” display, pop-up flash, and many other great features that you’ll find useful.
According to independent reviewers, photographers love the FZ1000 primarily because it has a relatively larger sensor than many other cameras in its class. The image quality is pretty impressive with this camera, and it’s relatively easy to handle. So, even if you put it in the hands of a novice photographer, they’ll be able to get some excellent snapshots with it as well.
To be fair, reviewers also have a few criticisms for this camera, though nothing that’s a dealbreaker for most photographers. Some people in the community hate that this camera doesn’t come with a touchscreen. Perhaps that’s because the touchscreen has already become quite the norm with cameras in the same category. Overall, the camera itself is pretty big, and the zoom ring feels like it’s quite limited.
Still, a camera is what you make of it? That’s why in this article, we’re going to explore five essential tips that will help you get the most out of the Panasonic FZ1000, regardless of your level of photography experience.
Invest In Knowledge!
The first step to mastering your Panasonic FZ1000 is to invest a little bit of time and money into gaining knowledge! Sure, you could just learn everything by yourself through hours upon hours of practice. But we all know that’s not the most efficient way to learn. Instead, learning from others will steepen your learning curve and speed up the development of your skills. You’ll learn from other photographers’ mistakes so that you don’t have to experience them yourself. Plus, you’ll gain their insight which they spent a long time finding on their own.
So, how can you go about investing in knowledge? Well, the traditional way would be for you to go to a bookstore and buy a guide that’s specific to the FZ1000. Perhaps a photography store near you would have that kind of reading materials.
These days, people also invest in digital learning materials like ebooks, as well as online courses for photography. Ebooks are much more accessible to anyone in the world, and they’re much more affordable. Online courses, on the other hand, offer you a chance to gain a sort of passive mentorship by the person conducting the class.
These methods of learning usually involve a price tag, and some are more costly than others. But think about it as an investment so that you can get the most out of your Panasonic FZ1000. So, choose a method that suits your learning style. If you love to read, you have books and ebooks. But if you absorb knowledge better through audiovisuals, you’ll probably gain more from online video-based courses.
Use The Rule Of Thirds
You may or may not be familiar with the Rule of Thirds. It’s a commonly-used rule in photography that helps you to compose your shot in such a way that you draw the viewer’s attention to specific points in the image. While some photographers may view that as being a simple rule, many take it for granted or underestimate the value it offers.
The Rule of Thirds is pretty straightforward. In your mind, divide your picture into nine equal-sized parts. You can do this by imagining two vertical and two horizontal lines crossing each other, which will mean your image divides itself into nine parts. According to the Rule of Thirds, the subject you wish to draw attention to should be along those lines or wherever the lines intersect. That way, the viewer’s eyes will land on those points naturally.
Of course, with the Pansonic FZ1000, you don’t necessarily have to imagine those lines. Using the camera settings, you can turn gridlines on and off, making it much easier for you to apply the Rule of Thirds to your photography. You’ll find that this is much easier with the FZ1000 in particular thanks to its 3-inch free-angle LCD that you can position however you see fit.
So, where should you place things along those gridlines? Well, try aligning landscapes with horizontal lines and vertical subjects with vertical gridlines. Use the points of the grid to bring attention to the eyes of your animal and human subjects.
But most importantly, experiment! You’ll get a better sense of things as you gain more experience.
Make Use Of Shadows
When it comes to shooting with your Panasonic FZ1000, it’s not always about brightly-lit subjects. You should also learn to take advantage of shadows to make your photos much more intriguing.
Here’s what you probably didn’t know if you were a novice: not all shadows are the same. You have short shadows, long shadows, or even those that form patterns. Surprisingly, you could even use artificial light, like the one coming from the built-in flash on the FZ1000, to create shadows the way you like them. Once you start to think a little bit more about shadows, the possibilities become endless!
For starters, you can take advantage of the Golden Hour. That’s the time after sunrise and right before sunset when the sun is very low on the horizon. Generally, photographers love the Golden Hour because of the exceptionally soft and red natural light that it provides. However, the Golden Hour also offers you benefits to photographers wanting to capture long shadows. Because of how low the sun is on the horizon, the shadows that you see from people or objects are much longer than usual. If your composition is on-point, long shadows could make for a very impressive snapshot.
On the other hand, you could also use shadows to create an air of mystery. Whatever your subject may be, be it a person’s face or even that of an animal, you create mystery and generate intrigue when you hide them partially with the use of shadows.
Just as how some people play with the light to create great works of photographic art, you should do the same with darkness and shadows.
Avoid Camera Shake
Next, it’s essential to avoid taking pictures with a shaking camera. The Panasonic FZ1000 isn’t all that heavy, weighing in at only 831 grams. Still, if you hold anything in your hands for an extended period, no matter how light it might be, you’ll eventually start to shake. Your breathing, the tension in the muscles of your arms and hands, all of it contributes to unwanted shaking.
Even if your hands are only shaking a little, your picture will look a lot less sharp than it should be, especially at lower shutter speeds. And that’s a shame, considering the FZ1000 is capable of taking some super-sharp photos.
So, how do you avoid camera shake? There are two things to consider. Firstly, you should make full use of the image stabilisation and digital correction featured in the FZ1000. Simply put, the camera does a great job at compensating for any shaking that it detects. So even in situations when you might unknowingly shake more than you’d like to, you’ll get pretty sharp images.
If that’s not enough and you want even less shaking, there is another option. You could invest in a simple tripod. One of the many reasons people use tripods for photography is so that the camera will remain perfectly still for as long as necessary. Plus, it gives you as much time as you need to compose your shots correctly. If you’re in a public place with no tripod, you could also place your camera on a stable surface. Look for a shelf, a hardcover book, or even a high table like you’d find at bars. They’ll fulfil the same function.
You’d be missing out on a lot of you didn’t use the Panasonic FZ1000 to do macro photography. To recap, macro photography means taking close-up pictures of small subjects like insects and flowers. With a focal length range of 25mm – 400mm, this camera will perform well with this style of picture-taking.
To get the most out of macro photography with the FZ1000, you should choose a suitable subject. Insects or bugs might be a bit challenging for many photographers. Firstly, you may feel uncomfortable around those kinds of creatures, especially up close and personal! Even if they don’t bother you at all, they’re also living creatures that move around and scare easily. So, capturing them at the right moment might be quite challenging. Instead, you could opt for a stationary subject like a flower, which would be much easier for you to capture beautiful close-up shots.