July 18, 2018

8 Simple Tips to Take Better Cell Phone Pictures

How to Improve your Cell Phone Photography with 8 Easy Tips

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camera phone photo tips
8 Camera Phone Tips
All cell phones include a camera which is very convenient for snapping photos of friends, family and daily life, but can be annoying when the photos don't turn out very well.

Cell phone cameras are improving, especially for high end smartphones, and more and more people are relying on them to record important events and memories.

But we have all probably experienced trying to capture a moment only to see the image turn out poorly. Well we are sharing our best tips to help you capture better photos with any cell phone camera.

Obviously more expensive smartphones tend to have much better quality cameras which makes taking a good photo easier, so if you really enjoy shooting with your cell phone, we suggest looking into phones like the iPhone SE, Moto G6, iPhone 8, and Samsung Galaxy S9

Camera Phone Photo Tips Outline:

1. Use the 3x3 Camera Grid
2. Clean your Lens!
3. Avoid using Flash (when possible)
4. Look for Good Lighting and Use It
5. Zoom with your Feet
6. Tap to Focus
7. Hold it Steady!
8. Edit your Photos

Budget phones are still capable of capturing good photos and these tips will help you do that!

8 Tips to Improve Your Cell Phone Photography

1. Use the 3x3 Camera Grid
how to take better photos with your cell phone
Rule of Thirds - Cell Phone Camera Tips
Just about every camera app should have an option in the settings to display a 3x3 grid over the screen. This is helpful for a number of reasons, particularly photography's 'Rule of Thirds' which says that the intersecting points of the 3x3 grid is where you should put the main subjects in your photo. Additionally the grid is helpful for keeping the horizon level.

See the image on the right and how the grid helps line up the islands in the photo and keep the horizon level.

2. Clean your Lens!
Many a photo has been ruined by a smudged or dirty lens and quick wipe before you go to take a shot can go a long way in avoiding one possible reason your photo didn't turn out as well as you were hoping.  The edge of a t-shirt or other soft cloth is great for this and don't forget to wipe the lens on the front of the phone for selfies.

3. Avoid using Flash (when possible)
Many phones now also have a flash which is helpful for lighting up night scenes. However, flash can also leave parts of the photo overexposed and nasty shadows. Try turning the flash off and shooting with the available light first, and use flash as a last resort. Your photos should look more natural and people in your images will appreciate not getting blinded.

4. Look for Good Lighting and Use It
Photography is all about light but you don't need to be a great photographer to understand light, simply look for ways to have the subject in your photo positioned so they make use of the light available. For example, if you are inside a room with a window, try positioning the subject so that the light from the window falls on their face and naturally brightens it. Try to avoid bright lights behind your subject as they will tend to cause your subject to be too dark.

Taking a moment to reposition your subject before shooting can go a long way towards creating a better image.

If you are taking pictures of a landscape, sunrise and sunset are the preferred times to shoot as the light is the most unique and softer than mid day.

5. Zoom with your Feet
Although cell phone cameras have zoom, don't use it (as much as possible). It is much better to move your feet and get closer rather than using the phone to zoom as the quality of the image will degrade significantly.

6. Tap to Focus
Most cameras allow you to tap/touch to focus on a specific subject in the photo and this is great for shooting any closeups. Additionally, this may help your camera expose more properly for the subject you are shooting.

7. Hold it Steady!
Keeping the camera steady goes a long way to getting a sharp image. Hold the phone with both hands when possible, and even try bringing your elbows in towards your body to add more stability. You can also try setting the phone on a table or railing to help stabilize further.

Another great tip is to set your camera's timer for two seconds to further avoid shaking the camera.

8. Edit your Photos - Lightroom Mobile
Going beyond an Instagram filter and actually editing your photo can make a noticeable difference and sometimes recover details in an over or under exposed image.

There are lots of free and paid apps for photo editing, but we have found the free LightRoom Mobile app is very robust while also fairly simple and gives users significant control over photo editing.

Bonus Tip! Try Third Party Camera Apps
Did you know you can download other camera apps to take over form the standard camera app that came with your phone? This can be really fun and helpful if you are looking for certain features or just want to try something new.

That's it for our cell phone photography tips, we hope these will help you shoot better images! Leave a comment below with any questions or your own tips!

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Anonymous said...

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I just noticed this revelation 2 weeks ago when you posted a beautiful photo on OHC FB Group! (Yes, I'm part of that group! lolz, sounding stalkerish right now) Thinking.. this name looks familiar, where did I.... OMG! Tracfonereviewer! ONE DAY, I'll figure out which photo I want.. and make a purchase... I was actually drawn to one in particular, but all of them are so beautiful! Can't decide!

- From a fellow TF User & OHC Member lol