It used to be that to get the perfect picture, you would need to lug a heavy camera set up around all day. Then you would need to find the perfect shot, ensure the lighting was right, and pray that all your experience leading up to that moment was enough to capture the image that you were looking for. The good news is that with the advent of smartphones and the cameras they hold, getting a great shot is so much easier. Although, knowing how to get the best digital shots from your smartphone is a skill that can certainly increase the likelihood of the perfect picture. With that in mind, check out my Smartphone Photography top tips below.
Get to know your phones manual photo settings
Before anything else, you must understand the limits of your smartphone camera. Indeed, by knowing what it can and can’t do you will much better be able to get the shots you want.
With that in mind, spending some time exploring the manual photography settings on your smartphone is a good idea. Play with the shutter speed, and the balance and really get a feel for the device you are using, it certainly will stand you in the best stead when it comes to taking pictures out in the field.
Choose natural light
Good lighting is an essential part of taking a decent photograph. In fact, good light isn’t just about visibility but also plays a large part in creating the right mood in the photo as well. To that end, before you begin snapping it’s a good idea to think about the light you are working with.
In particular, many photographers using a smartphone will opt to take their shots outside. This is because the sensors of smartphones have worked much more effectively in natural light. Although, it is possible to recreate a natural light feel indoors if you have equipment such as a ring light that diffuses light across the subject of the picture, or a light-reflecting background.
Use an optical zoom
When taking a close-up shot there are a few rules that you must bear in mind if you want the best results. The first of these is to get up close and personal with what you are taking a picture of rather than using digital zoom. This is important because as digital zooms enlarge the image they also reduce its resolution. Something that will lower the quality of your image and also make it a nightmare to work with, post-production.
The only exception to this rule is if you have a smartphone that is fitted with an optical zoom. The good news is that more and more phones are being released with optical zoom tech, preciously for the reason above. Therefore if you are looking to take a lot of detailed close-up work, it may be worth your while to invest.
Invest in a shutter button
Another useful type of tech for smartphones is shutter buttons. These will allow you to take images on your phone without having to tap the screen. This is great news for budding photographers because anytime you tap the screen to take a shot you risk micro-movements that will have an impact on your photography.
Make use of the burst feature
Most smartphones now come equipped with burst features. This means that your phone will take multiple pictures every time you take a shot. The advantage of this is that even if your timing isn’t perfect, you will have multiple opportunities to achieve the right shot. In fact, once you have taken a photo with the burst feature you can go back and choose the one you like the best.
Feel free to edit your work
One of the best things about working digitally with a smartphone is that even if you don’t quite create the perfect shot, you can easily edit it afterward. In fact, there is a whole range of options when it comes to editing to consider.
The first of these is to use the editing functions that come with your phone. These usually include things like being able to crop and rotate the image, alternating the exposure and saturation, and even changing the tones of the image. However, most smartphones are fairly limited in terms of the editing options they provide.
That is why many people choose to use additional editing tools. In particular software for specific tasks like this background photo editor app can be useful. Especially if you are looking to alter the background of the image you have. Then there is software such as adobe photoshop and lightroom which can be used for even more advanced photo editing. Although, this is often not needed unless you are working at a commercial level.
Get technical – (your phone has a grid)
While you may not need quite as much technical know-how as an old-time analog photographer to get a great shot, at least a little of their know-how can go a very long way. In particular, the rules of thirds is a great technique to use, and the great thing is that most smartphones come with displays that replicate the 9×9 grid for you.
Of course, you will still need to know how to use such a grid for maximum results. All you need to do is make sure that the focal points of your picture are positioned where the lines on the grid intersect.
Invest in a lense
Finally, if you are looking to get the perfect shot on your smartphone, why not invest in an additional lens? Of course, your smartphone will have a camera with a lens, and sometimes it will have more than one. However, you can enhance your photos and get a range of different and professional-looking effects by investing in a clip-on lens.
Indeed, you can get all sorts of shots from different lenses including panoramic shots with fisheye lenses, and amazing close-ups with telephoto lenses. Why not invest in a few and try them out to see which gives you the best results?
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