Taking Better Phone Photos

It is always with us, comes in handy for receiving messages, getting help in an emergency, talking to our children and the home front, and most of all, documenting our busy lives by taking a photo of everything we see and do.  So how do I take a better picture so I get the very best out of my phone’s cameras?

When a person starts out playing golf, they spend a lot of time concentrating on the fundamentals. How should they stand? How should they hold their arms? Are their shoulders correct? Is their head down?

A new golfer thinks about these things as they approach the T-box. They think about it as they’re lining up for their shot. And they’re really thinking about it after they shank their drive into the left rough.

So, what does this have to do with photography and composition?

It’s about taking methodical steps to become proficient.  Ask yourself questions, train yourself to see the frame, be alert to colors and objects that attract you- but there is more that you can do.

When you take a photograph that doesn’t work the way you envisioned, analyze it. Don’t just toss it aside and move on. Figure out why it didn’t work.

You can also take this step further-

Search out photographs that you think are fantastic and analyze why they’re fantastic.

Imagine if that image were formatted as a vertical instead of a horizontal, or vice versa.

Change your angle of shooting. Use model cars.

car

Imagine if the subject of the photograph was centered, or not.

20190124_210907-01

Now let’s take a photo:

For those that want to take your photography to a higher level- learn your “phone”.

Your phone is a wide angle – fixed lens

Picture2

The winner of the phone wars will be the one that makes an optical zoom, has a bokeh or blur background, while still having ease of use. Several phones have multiple cameras to accomplish this already.

tulip

When you capture the image, you need to make a workflow for post-processing.

When to do what, when to use what app:

Capturing:

  • Shoot in default
  • Use burst mode – hold down the shutter button
  • Take cool silhouette pics by shooting into the light
  •  Phone a friend. Use another camera phone for a light source.
  • Change the way you hold the phone. Try it upside down and a lower angle and reflection.
  • You don’t have to unlock your phone.
    • Swipe left. Apple
    • Hit the power button twice for Samsung.
  • Tap for focus and set the exposure- works like a point and shoot.
  • Tap and hold until the yellow rectangle locks it in.
  • Use remote shutter release. On the iPhone, it is either the up volume button or the up volume button on your earbud if you have one.
  • On a Samsung, set it to Voice command and your hands never leave the phone for stabilization. Say “cheese”.
  • Never just punch the screen. Always take the time to focus first.
  • Look for the “light bulb” icon so you can change the exposure before the shot.
  • Once your phone is focused, it will appear.
  • Then move around and it will keep the frame lighting.
  • Review images after taking- does it catch your eye? Start deleting.
  • Useful- create an album on the device- call it “to edit”- move into an album and you can see them all together.  Much easier to find.

Do small specific apps first that do one thing at a time. (heal or clone)

Use the final photo with an app like Snapseed, VSCO, Camera +, Cyberlink PhotoDirector, Adobe Photoshop Express, or Lightroom CC.img1547408754609

Take a class at the AGE Computer Lab on Taking Better Photos. 

Next issue will be on Photo Phone Apps- stay tuned.

 

 

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