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10 Best Tips To Take Good Photos From Phone Camera

Whether you’re looking to step into the world of photography or simply just looking for ways to improve your skills in taking pictures from the camera on your smartphone, you can never go wrong with taking tips. So, here are 10 of the best tips on how to take good photos from your phone camera

1. Gridlines And The Rule Of Thirds

Rule of Thirds - ScillBee

Making use of the gridlines (which when turned on, are a series of lines that are superimposed on the screen of your smartphone camera) is one of the simplest and best ways to enhance your mobile photos. The gridlines work according to the Rule Of Thirds, which is a photographic composition principle which states that a picture must be fragmented into thirds, horizontally as well as vertically, in order for you to have a total of nine parts of it.

This principle ensures that your photo will be more balanced, level, and viewers will be allowed to interact more organically with it if points of interest are placed in these intersections or along the lines.

2. Lighting

Lighting plays a crucial role in the quality of any photo. You need not utilize the built-in flash on your mobile phone if there is natural light available and you know how to make use of it, then you don’t have to resort to your phone’s built-in flash (which may give you less-than-ideal results, particularly at a distance).

Although it’s not always possible for quick snaps, do your best to make sure that whatever is that you’re taking a picture of is properly lit from the front and not silhouetted from the back.

An option you can resort to is the aid of artificial light, which can although requires a little more care, but it can be beneficial. Take a night-time scene, for example, ensure that the subjects stand in proximity to the artificial lights’ glow instead of standing amidst the shadows. Also, make sure the subjects’ faces are well lit as possible. Utilizing the flash, however, if you aren’t pressed for time, take one shot with flash and one without to check which one looks better.

3. Give Tripods A Try

Get familiar with a tripod in case your city skyline snaps appear a tad bit off. A tripod is a photographer’s best friend, a smartphone photographer in particular due to its utility when it comes to taking quality pictures.

The versatility of a tripod is unmatched as far as adding your twist to pictures is concerned. This is why a tripod has the edge over a steady hand. An awesome variety of new techniques and photography styles such as long-exposures, low light photography, time-lapse many others are at your disposal with a tripod.

Pocket-sized tripods are just the right fit for smartphone photography as their functionality isn’t limited to one often device alone, they can be utilized with every phone basically.

In order to make use of professional tripods, smartphone cases equipped with mounting threads can be bought along with other accessories that have to do with cameras such as shoulder-straps.

4. Editing

Image Editing on Phone
Photo Credit – The New York Times

Whether you’re a fan of it or not, editing has become a pivotal aspect of photography. Camera apps aren’t the Alpha and Omega to getting quality pictures. Photo editing apps are essential if you want to add your own twist to your pictures prior to sharing them.

Multiple options are at your disposal when it comes to editing pictures. Besides the veteran photo gallery and editing apps offered by Apple and Google, numerous alternatives such as Snapseed, Adobe Photoshop Express, and VSCO are available. AI is even being incorporated by Adobe into photo editing apps.

Filters can be uploaded, colors can be edited, images altered and much more.  “one-touch” fixes by which pictures are enhanced with minimum effort are also available. Photos were taken on your smartphone camera get imported by photo editing apps while on others, there’s a camera component that’s integrated.

5. Exposure Experimentation

Exposure can be any photo’s kill-or-cure factor and is also what differentiates a shot of a subject in all its glory, from the shot of a subject that makes it look more like it’s a shadow of itself. Makes sure to lock in the focus on the subject you’re photographing by tapping on the screen.  This plays a huge part when taking snaps of people against skies as it keeps the image light.

On the other hand, simply tap the sky to make your subjects underexposed in case you want silhouettes.

Also Read: 7 Best Websites For Image Editing Online

6. Check Out The Default Camera

On the built-in camera that is available on IOS devices, you have the option of choosing from a  variety of live filters which can be accessed simply by tapping on the icon present on the top-right corner. If you’re on the iPhone 7 Plus and you want an immediate depth-of-field effect where the subject stays in focus while the background is blurred), simply slide your finger to the Portrait mode.

However, when it comes to Android devices, the camera app depends on which manufacturer your android phone was made by. There exists a lighting filter via the thermometer icon on the stock Google Camera app which has quite a number of utilities. It provides you with the option of picking from presets such as cloudy and tungsten among others in order for you to get the colors to come out just right regardless of the type of light that you have to work with.

Meanwhile, an assortment of additional scenes and tools are available on the default camera apps of Samsung, LG, Sony, Huawei (above), and others. On more recent models of Samsung phones, there exists a Pro mode which can be accessed by clicking on the Mode button. The Pro mode offers filters and adjustments for color and contrast which can be altered before the photo is taken. So, get familiar with the default camera app!

7. Don’t Fly Too Close To The Sun

Who doesn’t want to take beautiful pictures? Clear skies, sunny conditions, etc., something to keep in mind is the position of the sun when taking pictures. Make sure you don’t shoot too close to the sun meaning don’t point your lens towards the sun as this causes lens flares which tend to dominate the scene. Also, make sure that subjects aren’t massacred by blown highlights with no detail in those areas. In such cases, shade the lens with your hand in order to make sure it’s not in shot. This promises an awesome result. Pay attention to where the shadows fall and think about the best angle to take a shot when photographing people, not taking the position of the sun could lead to a picture of the silhouette with a mesmerizing background.

However, you can also use the sun to your advantage. Silhouettes can be created using a low sun, long shadows are great ways to get a different result and aesthetic.

8. Did I Shutter?

A remote shutter is quite a breakthrough as it eliminates the need for setting a timer and sprinting into the frame. Sounds like you need a remote shutter, an ideal accessory for whether you’re shooting pictures that need a steadier hand or simply taking self-portraits, a remote shutter is the ideal accessory. Architecture photographers whose field requires long exposures, have stated that regardless of how careful you may be, tapping the screen causes vibrations that will affect your photography. Therefore, remote shutters are the key for long exposures and night photography and promise to improve your technique.

A stylus that can also be utilized as an inconspicuous remote shutter button is offered by some devices such as Samsung’s Galaxy Note series of smartphones. Even if you’re not into Android devices, remote shutters are pocket-sized, cheap, and can be connected to your phone via Bluetooth.

9. Night-mode

how-to-use-night-mode - Phone Camera

Night-mode is the biggest shift in smartphone photography to have arrived in the past 5 years. Most of the latest phones have the night mode option, which is tipped as the biggest shift in smartphone photography in recent years.

An idea of what result you’re actually looking for is provided by night mode to your phone and a lot of technology is utilized in order to clean up, correct, and come up with a photo-worthy of being shared and cherished. With night-modes, you can do something that was impossible to do on smartphones just a few years ago, which is shoot scenes handheld. Plus some night-modes even provide you with more support, for longer exposures guaranteeing better results.

Night mode on iPhone automatically gets turned on in the right conditions while on other phones, you need to select it.

10. Say ‘No’ To In-App Cameras

If you want to take a great photo to share with your followers, use your regular phone camera instead of in-app cameras such as the Instagram camera. This is because all the skills that your phone offers are not used on such apps. Things like AI, choice of lenses, and night mode are omitted when you use in-app cameras providing you with the worst results

To take photos professionally, use the regular camera, edit them if you wish to, then and only then, share it via your preferred platform.

So there you go, 10 tips to make sure you make the right choice as far as mobile photography is concerned.

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Zamkhanlian Tonsing writes poetry both as a hobby and a way to unwind, an outlet so to speak. He is currently pursuing B.A, majoring in Sociology. Music has always been something that intrigues him as it's also what drives him.

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