With stress comes time to reflect on what I have learned over the year. I would have to say that the best thing i learned, the one thing i use every time i pick up my camera was how to properally use my histogram. When i first started photography school, i knew i was blessed with some sort of talent because they only accept 36 students a year. So i felt comfortable behind my camera and was confident for the most part.
We started with the basics which was more of a review for me, but when we got to the histogram the light bulb turned on, DING DING DING went the Bell. Now i am not saying that this is the only way, the end all say all, of how to use your histogram, i am just saying for me it works. So here is my unsolicated advice. I will start by saying that just about every digital camera out there has a histogram. The histogram shows us a distribution of where the tons are in our image going from Black to White. Most histograms have the ability to show you about 5 stops of range, they are usually divide by lines like a graph. Now if you are anything like me i always thought that if i had a mountain that was in the middle of this graph i was good, but i was wrong. I am not going to go into crazy details but i will that if you have a white point in your image you want that tone to be as close to the right side of your graph as possible. For me, even if there isnt any white i push to the right as far as i can go without going over. Rather than going into details about why if you dont believe i will share a link that i found helpful with you.
I wish that cameras gave us the option to not see the image and just have a large histogram in the preview screen because like this guy in the link above i am hardly aware of the image i shot, i pay all my attention to that wonderful thing called a histogram.