In 2019 it seems that, overnight, everyone has become a professional photographer. If you’ve ever wondered how your friend’s food photography makes your mouth water and how your sister captures crisp action shots of your niece playing soccer — this post is for you.
We break down our 10 best tips and tricks for capturing the perfect iPhone photos.
1. Use the volume button to capture photos
Rather than fiddling with the standard white shutter button on the front of the camera screen you can use the volume buttons (up or down) to quickly snap a photo!
2. “Burst” mode
By holding your finger on the shutter button (on the front of your screen) your iPhone will capture 10 photos per second. This feature comes in handy when you’re trying to take photos with children that can’t sit still, capture a fast-action sports game, or take a group shot with a team that won’t sit still. This way, you’re bound to capture at least one photo with everyone looking and since the shutter is moving so quickly action shots are a breeze.
If you’ve ever used High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode — on your iPhone you might have noticed that it takes longer for photos to process. That’s because your iPhone is actually taking three photos and combining them into one. Dynamic range is the ratio of light to dark in a photo. To accomplish this effect the iPhone takes three photos at different exposures and combines them into one. This makes HDR the perfect feature for capturing portraits in sunlight, backlit photos, and landscapes since it adjusts the exposure for you.
To turn on HDR mode go to “settings” → “camera” → and tap the switch next to “auto HDR” on, so the button is green.
4. Use the rule of thirds
The rule of thirds is a popular composition technique used in photography. Composition refers to how the photographer arranges the subject within the frame. The rule of thirds requires you to mentally divide your image into nine parts using two vertical lines and two horizontal lines. The focus point of the photo should be off-center so that users are drawn into the rest of the composition.
When framing a photo try to visualize the grid above over your scene. Choose the most important elements in frame and try and position them near the intersections of the grid.
The theory behind the “rule of thirds” is that, if used correctly, it will ensure your photo is your balanced and interesting.
5. Use the camera grid to make photo composition easier
The grid feature imposes two vertical and horizontal lines onto your screen. These lines help you keep your iPhone straight while taking photos and show you exactly where, within the frame, your subject is placed.
To turn on the grid feature go to “settings” → “camera” → and tap the switch next to “grid” on, so the button is green.
6. Portrait mode
If you have an iPhone 7 Plus, 8 Plus, X or XS you have portrait mode in your camera app. As you might have guessed, this feature is perfect for taking professional-looking portraits. Your subject will be crisp and sharp while the background blurs.
To utilize this feature simply open the camera app and swipe to the right. At the bottom of the screen you’ll see several choices including “photo”, “portrait”, “square” and many more.
7. Use the iPhone camera shortcut
Never miss the opportunity to take the perfect photograph of your pup again! Avoid wasting time unlocking your phone and opening the camera app.
To use the shortcut simply swipe up from the home or lock screen and select the camera icon.
8. Manually focus the camera
Yes, your iPhone camera will automatically set the focus for you — but that means that it’s also choosing the subject of your image for you. That being said, it’s best to set the focus yourself, that way you can make sure your subject is crystal clear.
It’s super simple to do! You just need to tap on the screen where you want the camera to focus and a yellow square will pop up. The camera will then focus on whatever is within that square.
9. Manually adjust the exposure
You can manually adjust the exposure (or light) in a photo before you even take it. To do so, open the camera app and tap on the screen to bring up the focus point (yellow square). Now hold down on the focus point until a yellow sun icon appears. Drag your finger up or down the screen to adjust the exposure manually before even taking the photo.
10. Don’t forget about AE/AF Lock
This feature allows you to lock the exposure and focus when taking photos. This feature allows you to take a series of photos (within the same scene) without having to reset the focus and exposure each time. This is also perfect for taking pictures of anything that’s moving — that way the camera doesn’t automatically re-focus when something moves.
To use this feature open the camera app and tap and hold on your focal point until you see a yellow AE/AF Lock button pop up at the top of the screen.