Swedish photographer Hannah Clark's summer shots evoke the feelings of hazy days in the sun. Her natural style of photographing friends and family has a beautifully light and warm aesthetic.
For years Hannah pursued photography as a hobby, using compact cameras to shoot everything from colourful streets in Stockholm to vast landscapes on her travels. Recently she decided to take photography a little more seriously, investing in a Canon DSLR camera to help her turn her hobby into a small business that she now runs alongside her day job.
Hannah chose the lightweight and easy-to-use Canon EOS 250D, which packs a host of features that her old compact cameras didn't have, such as compatibility with EOS system lenses and Speedlite flashes, an optical viewfinder and a guided user interface (GUI) to help her get up to speed.
With the Canon EOS 250D, a Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens and a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens in her kitbag, Hannah tackled a series of photographic challenges to expand her skillset. These challenges ranged from rethinking composition to trying different focal lengths, pushing her creative boundaries while making her familiar with her new kit. Here's what she learnt, including some techniques you can take inspiration from when capturing your own summer holiday fun.
Capturing shots from unconventional angles is something Hannah enjoys exploring in her photography. "I think about composition a lot," she says. "I envisage the typical way I'd take the picture and then play around with it – shooting high and low and putting the person in different places in the frame. If I just move a little bit, I can create a whole new picture."
The Canon EOS 250D is the lightest DSLR with a moveable screen*, which can prove practical when you're holding your camera above your head or crouching down on the ground to get a more interesting shot.
Getting sharp results is made simple with the autofocus system on the Canon EOS 250D. Eye Auto Focus ensures your subject's eyes are in focus when using the screen in Live View, which is easily activated by pressing the Live View button on the back of the camera.
"I almost always use the Eye Auto Focus mode when taking pictures of the kids playing, because regardless of what they're doing, their eyes are their most expressive feature," says Hannah.
Hannah has been experimenting with both prime (fixed focal length) and zoom lenses – specifically the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM prime and the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM zoom. Though she enjoys moving position to frame shots with the prime lens, she says "it's fun to use the zoom because I can get different angles of the kids in action, even if they're far away".
While testing the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM by photographing her children in grassy fields and by a lake, she found its light weight to be a revelation. "I loved playing with the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM," she says. "It's very light, which surprised me – I'd take it on holiday and would absolutely use it a lot."
However, the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens allowed her to get a shallow depth-of-field and create background blur in her portraits – meaning it still has its place in her kitbag. "The 50mm has a wider aperture, so that's perfect if it's a little darker, or if I want to create a blurry background. Combined with the Canon EOS 250D, the 50mm lens is great for portraits. If I had to choose just one lens to work with, it would be this one," she says.