• Charley Magazine

iPhone & You: Picture-Perfect Bliss

By Elijah Williams

In today’s world of photography, versatility is important. Making the switch from social media style photos to those upon the family gallery wall can be tough, and for that, nothing is more versatile than your cell phone. When it comes to outstanding photography, many people conclude that without a bank-breaking camera, their photos aren’t worth the double-tap. In reality, the only piece of equipment you truly need is your iPhone. With that being said, here are my top five iPhone photography tips to aid you on your journey to picture-perfect bliss.

1. Lighting

When shooting via smartphone, lighting is key if you’re going for that crisp HD look. iPhone cameras are great in most real-world settings, but they really flourish under proper lighting. To obtain the sharpest images possible, you have to help your phone and do your best to shoot in broad daylight or make an effort to bring some artificial light along with you.

2. Double up

Always be sure to double up on the total amount of pictures you think that you need. Having options is never a bad thing and, with mobile phones, you’ll soon realize that a large number of your photos are somewhat blurry. Also, make sure you have plenty of free storage—long shoots can become a hassle otherwise.

3. Stabilize Yourself

iPhone cameras are finicky, and more often than not, a slight shake of the hand can corrupt a whole series of photos. The best way to combat shaky pictures is to bring a tripod along for the ride. Having a way to snap photos stably can seriously step up your game in a way handheld cannot. Tripods are even better for self-portraits. Simply set your phone up and capture some photos with your headphones. Plug those in, click the volume button to take the photo and your phone handles the rest. This allows you to capture photos at an increased distance from your phone making those self-candids just a little easier to take.

4. Portrait Mode

The most important iPhone camera feature is Portrait mode. This automatically creates an effortless bokeh effect placed on any subject of your choosing. The depth effect seamlessly blurs the background of your subject, adding that professional look to virtually any photo. During your next shoot, give Portrait mode a try and experiment with its features.

5. Use of Applications

iPhone cameras are great, yet some native features can get in the way of your limitless creativity for the sake of user-friendliness. My favorite paid apps that, for me, break that barrier of simplicity are:

Halide Camera - Halide is a paid app on the Apple App Store that fundamentally turns your simple mobile phone into a standard DSLR camera. Halide gives you full control on basic camera functions otherwise unavailable to iPhone users, such as manual focus, ISO control, and RAW image capture.

Photoshop Fix - Adobe’s free photo editing app is a must for the more financial individuals out there. Photoshop Fix allows you to fine-tune the minor mishaps in your favorite photos, making your photos less mediocre and a little more perfect. For anything that catches your eye in the wrong way, this app is the key to minimizing frustration and yielding more jaw-dropping pictures all around.

If you haven’t tried these tips out already, experiment, get creative, and learn something new. Having an iPhone in 2020 is a great thing and it's time we make the most of the awesome camera it comes with! To check out more of Eli’s work, follow him on Instagram!

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