How to Take Great Shots with your Smartphone
Photographers like Keith W. Springer have the benefit of professional equipment, but we shouldn’t underestimate the power to take great photos with our phones. Some of the newer phones have fairly sophisticated cameras and features to help amateur photographers get the best snaps, but the bells and whistles this technology offers can’t replace good technique. Here are some tips to get the best pictures possible from your phone!
Even though most phones will allow you to zoom to capture images at a distance, you have probably already noticed that these pictures leave something to be desired. Whether from a lack of definition or a shaky hand, these pictures tend to be murky at best. Instead, set your phone to the highest resolution you can and try cropping your image.
Don’t Use the Flash
The flash on your phone just isn’t to the job it is meant for – not only do they take too long to come on and stay on too long, they also cast an unflattering light and makes everyone look like they have been possessed if the red eyes are any indication. Instead, try to seek out alternate and more flattering light sources. Newer phones also have settings for low lighting.
Clean your Lens
Given the amount of time your phone spends in your pocket or purse, being splashed by grease beside your plate at the restaurant, or in the grubby hands of children, it is not surprising that many pictures get ruined by a dirty lens.
There are plenty of apps out there that can apply some admittedly cool filters to your photos. However, these can be easily over-used, and become less cool when everyone is using the same filters. Instead, consider making more personal adjustments to lighting, color and everything else with one of the many great editing apps available.
Use the Gridlines
Even though many of us whip out our phones to capture quick moments, that is no excuse not to spend at least a moment thinking about composition. You have probably heard about the “rule of thirds” as a general rule of thumb – it is the idea that your photo should be broken down into thirds both side to side and up and down – the best shots are those that have the focus of attention at the intersection of these lines. The grid feature on your phone will make this much easier to accomplish on the fly!
Consider an External Lens
If you want to bump up the variety of your photos but don’t want to commit to a camera, consider getting an external lens that can be attached to your phone. This will open up a range of new possibilities, including wide-angle or fish-eye.
The best thing about taking pics with your phone is that you are only limited by your storage space and your imagination! Take lots of pictures of whatever strikes you as interesting, and pay attention to what works for you as you perfect your phone-photo skills!