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Smart Phone Photography: Getting Better at it!

Smart phone photography is fun and easy.  However, taking good photographs is more that just point, click and hope for the best.  Here are a few of the main pointers to remember whilst taking photographs with the camera in your pocket!

Smart phone photography Vervate Tips:

Posture

Don’t hold your mobile as if you are taking a selfie all the time! Keep it close to you and therefore hold it steady.

 

Landscape

This is usually the best way to take a photograph – it simply has more usages, for instance you can crop it to use on Twitter.  Instagram is square of course, but you can easily crop it, for examples this is a great little tool:

 

Zoom in with With Your Feet

Zooms on mobiles are really not very good, it’s just the way it is at the moment.  If you use them too much, you will find that your pictures are out of focus and pixelated.  Get close to your subject!

 

Fill the Frame

Don’t have lots of pointless clutter around the main focus of your image.

 

Focus

Tap the screen – many mobiles now allow you to hold that place if you tap it twice, it locks in that point of focus.

 

Angles

Get creative and move around the subject a bit to see what feel you can give to it.  It doesn’t have to be ‘point and shoot’.

 

Lighting

Unless your name is Carrie-Anne, don’t go into the light!  This will cause your subject to be backlit and dark.  Professionals sometimes use their flash to offset that but really, with mobiles, it is simply best avoided.

 

Flashes are bland

Using a flash is sometimes necessary of course, but it can just make your subject look too bright, the colours go a bit kind of flat, and there is little atmosphere to the image.

 

Think about the STORY

What is the main point to your photograph?  What are you wanting people to see, think, know?

 

 

A few Good and Bad Examples (unedited) of smart phone photography:

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boo

 

 

 

This image from a conference doesn’t portray much about the event at all and has lots of backs of heads.

 

 

 

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boo

 

 

 

Is anyone there?!  The zoom as much as anything lets the mobile down for these kind of images at big events.

 

 

 

 

Slide03smile

Much better as the camera gives the image some context and a bit more interest.

 

 

 

 

TOP TIPS for Smart Phone Photography at Conferences and Events:  Sit near the front but if you do take images from there, be wary of putting the speaker off.  Be brave and take a photograph from the front of the audience.  In all honesty, a professional with experience in moving around without being seen etc, plus lenses that are great for zooming is far to be preferred.  Enjoy the talk, then maybe ask the speaker afterwards to pose for you.  CANDID images are best with professionals too really.  Holding up your mobile can be distracting and thus it isn’t easy to catch those candid moments – the zoom is the biggest hindrance here again though.

 

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boo

 

 

 

Ok she doesn’t look happy about this image anyway but the chimney from her head is also very distracting…!  The photo is also taken too much into the light.

 

 

 

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This time, she is in a nice relaxing posed, the light is on her face and the whole composition works really well.  Mostly as she has lost that large horn from her head!

 

 

 

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boo

 

 

 

Taken of Simon, Vervate Senior Photographer, but straight into the sunlight.

 

 

 

 

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Same set up as above but taken with the light behind the mobile camera.

 

 

 

 

Couple of Top Tips for Smart Phone Photography:

Keep your lens clean!

Take a few images in succession, for example, use ‘burst mode’ for people

Play around with some Apps to see what works well for you, but try to not over process an image unless that is the look you are going for.

TOPPEST TIP:  Enjoy, practice and have fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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