posted by Guest blogger - Kirsten Alana | 3 Comments
Our latest blogger is Kirsten Alana, a photographer and mobile photography artist based in New York City. Kirsten blogs at her site Aviators and a Camera, while if you want to see more photos like the ones below make sure to follow her on Twitter and like her on Facebook.
With the release of Apple's iPhone 5S it's more true than ever that sometimes 'the best camera is the one that's with you'. Yet even if you're carrying around an older version, great photographs can be taken and shared all from your smartphone. Pay attention to the basic rules of good photography, follow these simple suggestions and download the right apps and you'll be taking killer shots with your phone in no time.
1. Adjusting exposure and focus
Remember that with most mobile photo apps, you can use your finger to touch the screen and tell the camera where it should adjust both exposure and focus. Do this especially when you want to create an image with only a small portion sharply in focus with great depth of field or bokeh in the background!
2. Use the 'Lux' setting in Instagram
If you're using Instagram to shoot, remember that the small sun-like icon in the bottom, left corner is the 'lux' setting and this can be used to correct a poor exposure by improving contrast and bringing detail out of the shadows in your photos.
3. Download 'ProHDR'
ProHDR is a great app that does simulate the HDR effect used by digital camera photographers but using the apps built-in sliders you can control that perfect exposure without screaming "HDR!!!". The app allows you to take as well as to import photos for effect application.
4. Use black and white
Don't underestimate the use of black and white to create interest in a story or sense of place. Not everything needs to be photographed in color. I love the 'Ansel' filter in Camera+. VSCO Cam, Monochromia and Monophix are great as well.
5. Group multiple images together to make one collective image
Group photos together in a collage to tell a story with one image. Apps like Diptic and Frametastic make it simple utilizing 2 to 9 images at a time.
6. Use the right apps for shooting food
Capture food at its most appetizing when you use Hipstamatic and their 'Foodie Snap' pack. It gives your images just the right colour and contrast with great depth of field that really captures delicious dishes at their best.
7. Capture motion blur
Capture motion blur by tracking your subject like you would with a normal camera - or, by composing your image first and focusing on a point you want sharply in focus, then allowing something like a train or person to enter the frame while you are pressing the shutter.
8. Snap on additional lenses
Snap on additional lenses, like the one Olloclip makes, to give your iPhone photographs added interest. Macro, wide angle and fisheye lenses - even telephoto - are all available from companies like Olloclip and Photojojo.
And some other tips regardless of what camera you're using...
9. Think out of the box
Look for ways to photograph well-known landmarks that are different from the usual postcard image. If you're capturing Big Ben, consider also capturing a nearby statue or other landmark. You could even "hide" it behind something else. Try to experiment and never take the expected photo!
10. Take advantage of reflections
Look for reflective surfaces like water, mirror and polished glass to frame images in a way that part of your subject is doubled. Or, capture the reflection instead of the real thing in your photo.
11. Add life to your shots
When you're taking travel photos, don't forget that allowing people to be in your photographs communicates a sense of life in a place. This is a good thing! And if faces aren't visible, you don't really need to worry about a release.
Thanks to Pedro Ribeiro Simões, Grand Parc - Bordeau, Vinoth Chandar, Freedom II Andres for the images from Flickr. Please not, all images were used under the Creative Commons License at the time of posting.
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