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Top smartphone photography tips

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Haven’t you found that some of your favourite, must-be-framed family pictures have been snapped with your phone? Yes, the phone that you carry around with you every day.

Nowadays it seems as if the smartphone camera has put a stop to most people purchasing the classic ‘point-and-shoot’. That’s because they’ve come a long way, capable of taking spontaneous shots or even carefully planned compositions. They’re especially ideal for capturing those impromptu family moments that you wouldn’t have been able to if you relied solely on your SLR (or other camera).

To help you take better pictures and snap those incredible ‘family-and-fun’ moments with your smartphone camera we’ve garnered the best of the best tips.

  • Come to the light

The one thing that smartphone cameras tend to struggle with is low light situations. To make sure that light is not a barrier you need to have your subject facing the light source.

  • Which light?

While we’re on the subject of light, here are a few pointers. Before we give the top 3 types of lighting away, let’s start with what to avoid. Avoid the middle of the day because the lighting is harsh and causes hard shadows and dark areas. What you should aim for is ‘front lighting’, which is when the light is behind you as you take the picture. You could also use ‘side lighting’, which is when the light is coming off the slight right or slight left of your subject. The best type of lighting, though, is called ‘golden hour’. This is usually an hour after sunrise or an hour before sunset.

  • Zip away from the zoom

Zoom will do you no favours. There. We said it. It takes your image quality down to zero, making whatever memory you’ve snapped unprintable. The best way to take a shot that requires a zoom is to physically get closer to your subject.

  • A good portrait 

When it comes to taking a good portrait picture of the family it’s all about framing and composition. Framing and composition is concerned with where the subject is in the photo frame. Now, the basic rule is to fill the frame with your subject and make sure that you include a bit of the background. A great rule of thumb is to take a vertical shot when you only have a single subject, and a horizontal shot for a group or full body single subjects.

  • Flush the flash

Don’t you find that when you use the flash setting your subject tends to come out ghostly? The picture quality just goes right down. So what do you do if you don't have enough light to work with? Sometimes turning off the flash in lower light situations will be better or at least give you something workable to lighten in editing. But if you do need to use the flash, you can soften the picture by placing a thin white sticker over it. You can even use a piece of tissue. This way you’ll get the light you need from the flash, while taking away the harshness. 

  • What not to do

Our last smartphone camera tip is concerned with a few things you should avoid:

*  Don’t use the front camera as the better camera is usually on the back of the phone.

*  While you don’t need to include the subject’s entire body in a portrait shot, try not to cut off arms, legs, feet, and hands. Especially don’t cut people off at the knees or waist as this makes them appear shorter and thicker than they are.

*  Don’t shoot with a dirty lens. Because it’s so small we often forget that it can get dirty, so make sure to clean it every now and then with a soft cloth.

At the end of the day these tips are meant to help you capture fun family moments. They’re not intended to make you feel like you have to be an expert, so remember to just keep snapping and enjoying the chance to get some awesome shots of your family and friends.

And if something should happen to your smartphone and you have to repair or replace it? Well, if you have cellphone insurance with Dialdirect, it will be handled for you in no time at all. If you don’t have cellphone insurance, just click here to get a quick quote