Every picture tells a story. One picture isn’t worth a thousand words or even ten million words. It is worth a never ending string of fantasies and memories. And to me, capturing raw emotions and moments is important because it can spark dreams and imagination. Often times, there is a preconception that a utopian image requires heavy-duty studio equipment and professional cameras. But if you have a passion for storytelling, then an iphone is all you need. To make a case in point, I have collected nine iPhone photography tips just for you. How many do you use?
Depending on how much natural light is present, you probably want to adjust the exposure. Simply slide your finger across the iPhone screen up (for increased brightness) or down (for decreased brightness). This adjustment can make your pictures a lot softer or harsher, depending on the feel you are looking for. Once you have a set exposure, be sure to lock that setting as well as your focus. The AE/AF lock is a simple, often overlooked, iphone technique. Just press your finger against the iPhone screen (right where you want to focus) and hold down until the gold letters AE/AF pop into place. Watch as the background blurs just a little. By toying with the exposure and focus, you can create the illusion of a shallow depth of field, typical of DSLR images. This style of photography allows the subject to stand out without an overtly distracting background.
I usually don’t zoom in or out while taking iPhone pictures. Why? I fear a certain pixelated fuzziness that follows those actions. The pictures lose bits of quality. Instead, I generally prefer to get as close to the subject as I can. But sometimes, if you are trying to take a picture of a bird soaring across the sky or water splashing in a pool, it is easy for your shots to become victims of motion blur (however close you get to the subject, the pixelated quality is inevitable). In this case, meet your new best friend – Burst Mode. Hold down on the shutter button to take a speedy series of pictures, all with minimum blur.
Framing the Story
I love using the grid lines on the iPhone because I personally struggle eyeballing the rule of thirds. To enable the grid, go to Settings > Photos & Camera > Grid Toggle On. Now, line up your subject along one of the vertical or horizontal lines for a more visually pleasing image. Your subjects don’t have to consist solely of inanimate objects (as I once believed). People add an extra dimension to any story. Their expressions, their body movements, and their position can dramatize or subdue a scene. But they shouldn’t clutter it. Unless you want to make a statement about how pervasive selfie-taking mobs are, people are meant to complement not take over the scene.
I’m obsessed with contrast. Graffitied words and street art that don’t mold together just begs for a quick snap. How about clashing colours side-by-side? Yes, please! Contrast fiddles with the little details. It always make for an interesting picture that borders on abstraction.
One of my favourite pictures of Niagara is the one above. Why? It doesn’t tell a story of immense power and intensity. Instead, it weaves a tale of fear and clinging isolation. Don’t be afraid to go out of the norm when you frame a shot. Go after your gut feeling. This is your work and your art. Make your iPhone camera your playground. And remember, iPhone photography is whatever you want it to be. There is no right and wrong. It is about how you feel in a moment.
Did you enjoy these iPhone Photography tips? What is your favourite iPhone photograph that you have taken thus far? Share in the comments below! As always, I would love to hear from you!