I’ve been fortunate enough to gain a fair share of recognition for my photography here at rolling out. For that, I’m eternally grateful. And while I have a ways to go before reaching my photographic zenith, I still get asked on the daily to share some tricks of the trade by novice photographers who wish to casually “shoot like I do.”

Now if shared all of my secrets, I’d have to kill them … so instead, here are five simple tips that can have someone shooting like a pro in no time. (And by pro, I mean much better than Deacon Jackson, who sometimes takes pictures at the church.)

Take a moment to think about your shot

Being thoughtful really pays off in photography. Not just with creative ideas, but also with setting up the perfect shot. So take a moment to line up your shot properly to get the exact frame that you want. That small amount of extra time will pay huge dividends.

Break the rules

While photography is nothing more than a book full of rules, it is also a form of creativity where rules are meant to be broken. So think outside the box and try all sorts of weird angles and things that you technically should never do. You never know what may come from a little rule-breaking.

Take in the entire picture

In photography, we often get so wrapped up in shooting close ups that we forget to just take a step back and take in the entire picture. Don’t you make that same mistake.

Notice wildlife

It’s easy to get caught up in people and landscapes, but some of the most interesting moments can be found by photographing the often forgotten inhabitants of this world.

Capture the candid moments

It’s so important to never take for granted the candid moments. Always having your camera around creates the opportunity to find some magical moments that you never knew existed.