How to Take Amazing Photos on Your iPhone!

Phone photography as blown up and a lot of people are wanting tips on how to take amazing photos just with your phone.

Well in today’s post I will be sharing tips on how to take amazing iPhone photos!

I am currently using the iPhone 11 for reference.

Portrait vs. Landscape Photos

Okay so what is the difference between taking portrait and landscape photos? Why is that important? Well lets get into it!

Portrait Photos

This is a photo that is taller than it is wide or shot vertically.

Shooting in portrait is good when it is 1-2 people in a shot, you’re taking a selfie, or shooting street/fashion photography.

I also shoot business headshots and pet photos in portrait as well.

Here are a few of my favorite images shot in portrait:

Landscape Photos

This is a photo that is wider than it is tall or shot horizontally.

I shoot in landscape for most family photography, group photos, street photography, landscapes/oceans/mountains, and group selfies.

I also sometimes shoot pet photos in landscape if there is more than one dog in the photo.

Here are a few of my favorite images shot in landscape:

Why is important to know when to shoot in each position?

Of course there isn’t a rule of when you should and should not shoot in each of these positions. You just have to follow your eye and gut on what you should shoot in portrait and landscape! Some photos just look better shot in landscape than in portrait and visa versa. But it all depends on your personal style of shooting.

Pay attention to lighting

Having good lighting can make or break your photo!

Why is having the right lighting important?

You don’t want to shoot at 12pm in an open field and expect to get dark and dramatic photos. Lighting is key to taking the photo you want.

If you’re wanting a more soft warm photo, shoot at golden hour with your subject facing the light. If you want something more harsh and dramatic, shoot at blue hour and play with some of the shadows.

Indoor Lighting

If you are shooting indoors then you should be taking your photos near a big open window. You can use reflectors to help bounce around light. Doing this will help create more lighting. Using the shadows in the room can also help create more moody photos.

Outdoor Lighting

If you’re going outside and shooting on a completely sunny day, try to find shade under a tree/building that will block out the direct sunlight.

Overcast days are fine to shoot but the colors won’t be very saturated.

Flash & Artificial Light

Shooting with flash can create some harsh shadows and lights in the image and it doesn’t look very professional.

Unless you are wanting some dramatic lighting don’t use flash.

With artificial lighting, it also doesn’t look very professional. Selfie lights are okay for selfies but natural lighting is best.

Night Lighting

The new iPhones have a night mode for photos and it works pretty well. It’s not the best and it sometimes comes out a bit grainy. This can make for some really cool and unique photos.

But if you want more clear crisp photos, I would recommend to shoot with a DSLR. I use a Nikon D3300.

Use a tripod

Using a tripod even for your phone can be beneficial!

It’s good to use when you want to take a time lapse of you working, cooking, cleaning, etc., if you want to take travel photos when you’re by yourself, or if you want a photo from above and you don’t want it to come out blurry.

Adjusting your exposure

Exposure is another main component when taking photos.

What is exposure?

Exposure is the amount of light reaching the image sensor. Basically, it’s how much light is in your photograph.

How do I adjust it on my phone?

When you tap to focus on your phone screen, next to the focus box (to the right) is a little sun on a line. You can drag that up and down to lighten/darken exposure. it works best when you lock the focus button in one place.

Rule of thirds

What is the rule of thirds?

The rule of thirds is a composition technique that uses asymmetry to create exciting images. You divide your frame into 9 parts (looks like a tic-tact-toe board) and place your focal point on one of the lines or on one of the 4 intersections.

Why is the rule of thirds important?

You should use the rule of thirds because it helps people pay more attention to your photos. How?

It has something to do with the way your brain processes information. Our brain tries to find the easiest way to understand an image. With symmetry, it’s easy. With asymmetry, it’s not and it pushes our brain to see more.

When your focal point is off center, that creates asymmetry. When the focal point is in the center it lacks excitement and the viewer will quickly move on.

How can I use the rule of thirds with my phone?

To turn on your grid on your iPhone go to SETTINGS > CAMERA> GRID and turn it on. This is how it will look like before and after you turn it on:

Tap to focus

I honestly learned this tip like 2 years ago haha.

Tap on your screen where you want to focus and the camera will automatically focus there, it’s that easy!

You can also lock your focus on your photo by pressing your screen to focus and then holding it down to lock it.

Why is focus important for taking good photos?

Having or not having good focus in your picture depends on how you want the photo taken. If you want the person in your foreground clear then you need to make sure to adjust your focus on them! If you want the background clear and your foreground blurry, adjust your focus to one point in the background.

It all depends on your personal style though. There is no rule on how you should and shouldn’t focus.

Editing your photos

Of course you can always take great photos on your phone but editing is a huge part of it. There are so many free editing apps you can download.

I use my own presets in Adobe Lightroom to edit most of my own photos for my Instagram feed and Instagram stories.

Adobe Lightroom Mobile

I created my own presets on here that are versatile and that can be used on multiple different types of photos. Adobe Lightroom is free to download and it’s pretty easy to use which is nice. Of course, it does take some trial and error learning how to use it but once you get the hang of it, editing your photos will be a breeze.

Adobe Photoshop Mobile

Adobe finally came out with a mobile version of Photoshop. It can’t do everything the desktop version can but it’s really nice for beginners to use. It isn’t free though, you can only access it if you have a subscription to Adobe. Although there is a free version of photoshop but it’s very basic and can’t even do half of what the paid mobile version can do.

VSCO

VSCO is a great app that is also free to download. It does come with a variety of free filters that are adjustable. I bought the year subscription and I now have access to all of their filters and its good if you’re looking to not spend a fortune on editing apps like with Adobe.

Retouch

This app I believe is only 2-3 euros in the App Store. You can remove just about anything in your photos using this app and it actually looks good. This app is good to use if you’re just sharing your images on Instagram. I wouldn’t recommend using this if you plan on getting prints of your photos as it could diminish the quality.

Snapseed

I don’t use this app all to much honestly. But it is one of the better photo editing apps out there so I wanted to add it to the list! You can add grain/film textures to your photos and you can also had blurriness to your photos with a click of a button which is pretty cool. This app is also free to download from the App Store!

Taking good iPhone photos can be difficult and a bit confusing at times but if you follow these tips, I guarantee that your photos will start changing for the better!

Do you have any other iPhone photography tips? Please feel free to share them with me down below!

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