Since our smartphones now also generally double as our cameras, what are some iPhone photography tips to take better snaps and capture memories for the future?
Whether you need a means to capture your cafe brunches or simply can’t be bothered lugging around an ‘old fashioned’ point and shoot option, the quality of the camera is often one of the major factors that determine which smartphone is right for you. Unfortunately, not all were made equally, which is why many of us tend to default to one of the tried and true fan favourites – the humble iPhone.
Industry titans such as Apple know just how much consumers value the quality, performance, bells and whistles of their smartphone’s camera, and have invested heavily into improving their in house technology accordingly. While 2007’s first ever iphone was rocking a rear camera with just two megapixels, that has since ballooned to a whopping twelve megapixels on both front and back cameras.
However, despite the company’s best marketing efforts to get you to upgrade handsets each year, that doesn’t mean that you need the latest model to take a decent photo or video. In turn, what are some of the lesser known iPhone photography tips that have the potential to be revolutionary for your Instagram page?
In the right hands, the photos taken with a modern smartphone are almost indistinguishable from those taken from a bulky DSLR camera, which usually go for three times the price. While some iPhone photography tips are more commonly known than others, such as harnessing the magic of the relatively new Portrait and Night modes, others are less easy to come by.
Deploy Burst Mode – While there has always been something magnetic and attractive about moving subjects, they’re also notoriously difficult to capture. To turn it on and nail the action shot, simply hold your finger on the shutter button once you have the camera app open and running, and up to ten multiple shots per second will be fired off automatically. To activate burst mode on iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max, swipe left on the shutter button and hold to shoot in burst mode.
Tweak Your Lighting – Lighting is often one of the major bones of contention for iPhone photography enthusiasts, so having some extra control always helps. Thus, if you’ve seen the yellow focus square in your camera, notice the icon on the right hand side of it. This little button, along with the slider attached, will help you adjust the exposure and lighting of your desired image. If you need your shot to be darker, simply drag your finger down on the screen. In comparison, if you want it to be brighter and overexposed, then simply drag it up instead.
Use The Levelling Tool – Technically not limited to just food snaps, the levelling tool is a great way to ensure that any overhead images – or ones in which you are standing directly over your subject matter – is one of the best iPhone photography tips that many people have never heard of. When you’re taking overhead shots, two plus signs (one white, one yellow) will appear on your screen. When the two ‘+’ line up and turn into one yellow ‘+’, that’s when your camera is level – just make sure that you have the grid function turned on in your main settings first.
Control The Blur – The introduction of Portrait Mode was a game changer for a generation of selfie loving technology addicts, but the true depth of this addition is often not properly utilised. With Portrait mode, the camera creates a depth-of-field effect, which lets you capture photos with a sharp focus on the subject and a blurred background. However, users can adjust how much depth and blur is applied via the magical f-stop function at the top right of the camera screen. In a nutshell, smaller f is more background blur, bigger f is less background blur.
Embrace HDR Mode – Using the HDR setting on your iPhone can create more balanced lighting in a scene with a ‘wide dynamic range’, i.e. a large difference between darks and lights. This software-based approach takes three photos all at once: one adjusted to the brightest parts of the scene, one adjusted to the darkest parts, and one in between. From there, the three photos are automatically combined to give you an image that doesn’t blow out the highlights or lose too much detail to the shadows, and works best when capturing landscape images.
More often than not, what phone has the best camera often boils down to your budget, what type of photos you would like to capture, and what other demands your smartphone needs to be able to meet. Thankfully, there are a vast plethora of options when it comes to sourcing the perfect fit, so just be sure to do your research prior to purchasing. After all, even the ‘older’ iPhone models are still wonderful photography tools if you know how to properly work with them.
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