Know your camera
This probably seems a bit silly, but honestly, this is probably the best tip that can be given about digital photography. I’m not saying you have to know how your camera functions inside and out. What I mean is that you should have a basic understanding of the controls and how to use them properly.
How do you change the flash settings on the camera?
How do you control the focus settings?
Where do you change the ISO?
How do you switch between modes?
Looking in your camera’s manual is a good place to start for these. Depending on the pictures you’re taking, knowing where these are and how to use them will be helpful to your picture taking.
Know your subject
Almost as obvious as knowing your camera, it’s extremely important to know your subject well. Children react different to their pictures being taken than say, a dog. Just as rocks would respond different than adults. Give yourself some time to familiarize yourself with what you’re shooting first.
Watch hands, heads and feet
If there bathroom for all of a person in-frame, don’t try to force it. You don’t have to show the whole body but, cutting off hands, feet and heads tend to leave an unclean, unprofessional look to your photographs. Yes, you can crop. Just do it in a way that looks more natural. For example, if you shoot someone from the shoulders up, their hands or feet won’t be in-frame but their head should be.
The thirds rule
Think of the view through the viewfinder as being split into nine equal parts, like shown in the figure below. Some cameras even have a built-in option to place guidelines like these over the screen. The outside corners of the center square are the perfect place to place your focus or your subjects. Putting them in these areas allows for more professionalism and a better looking picture overall than one that is focused dead-center.
Don’t keep all of the photos you take. Face it, some of the pictures you take aren’t going to come out how you wanted them to. You’ll learn to live with it. If you keep pictures just for the dishonest they could have been, it’ll end up being nothing but a hassle. Out of every 100 shots you take, expect under 10 of them to be good shots worth keeping.
Try new things. Don’t be afraid to throw away everything you’ve ever heard about photography and do it a new way. Create and capture based on the things that capture your interest. Check out photography sites and magazines to see what others are doing and see how they inspire you.