Professional photographers will probably take umbrage at the idea that the best camera is the one you’ve got with you, but the truth is that the world has changed since photography as we know it was born in the 1820s. We now take far more photos, and our camera is most likely the smartphone we keep in our pockets or bags.
We take so many photos and capture so many memories, but do you ever scroll through your gallery and realise that there are very few photos you’d actually want to print out and display?
Here are some tips we’ve gathered together so you’re taking great photos with your smartphone.
Understand the basics
There are basic principles that underline what makes a good photo, and applying them to your happy snaps can make all the difference.
The rule of thirds – that is, dividing your photo up into a grid and making sure the elements of your photograph flow and fit within that grid of those 9 squares – is the best place to start.
You should also consider what is in the background. Is it too fussy and distracting? Then consider aspect ratio – in other words, if your phone is vertical or horizontal. Are you capturing a photo of a person? Get nice and close so they fill the frame. You should also take the photo where the lighting is good.
Planning a little is a good idea. The worst photos are often the result of a point and shoot approach.
(check out this beautiful sunset snap from Lucy taken on the Samsung Galaxy S9)
Get to know your phone
Just like a traditional camera has lots of dials and switches, the camera in your phone has lots of settings that will make your photos better.
Have a dig in your phone’s settings. In the settings app on iPhones, for example, you can switch the Grid option on to help you use the Rule of Thirds.
As smartphone cameras get more and more sophisticated, lots of phones come with amazing features, for example the Samsung S9+ has focusing features that allow you to add depth of field, plus a slow motion camera that takes 960 frames-per-second. Check out our review for a demonstration of these features.
(Sydney Harbour looks stunning in this snap by Lucy using the Oppo R11s)
Use an app
Downloading an app can also help you capture great images. There are many apps to help you improve your images by cropping, applying filters, improving tone, and improving composition – just like a photographer used to do in the darkroom.
What is your favourite smartphone to take photos with? Comment below