Taking photos was a hassle before the emergence of smartphones. Cameras were not portable and affordable. But as smartphones become popular, they revolutionized photography along with it. Smartphones offered countless functions, great portability and had a relatively good image quality for a cost-effective device. Over time, smartphones have been developed to offer better camera quality, with some brands specializing in photography and making it its selling point. Thus nowadays, you do not need a high-end expensive professional camera to capture professional photos. However, similar to any professional camera, shoving your device in front of something and clicking the shoot button does not get a great photo. So here are a few pointers you can follow to capture better photos and become better in photography:
Your smartphone camera can get dirty easily through daily wear and tear. So clean the camera with a small piece of cloth before taking a photo. Explore different settings in your camera app while practicing photography. Some devices might reduce the photo resolution to save storage space, so make sure you set your resolution settings to the highest. Press on the screen where your subject is to manually focus on it, as camera apps can not always focus on the subject of the frame. If your subject is far away, do not zoom in or crop the photo to reduce the quality. Instead, try moving closer to get a better picture if possible. Hold your phone steadily with both hands and capture the photos to avoids making it appear shaky or blurry.
if you have a problem clicking the capture button, use the volume bottom to capture images. Most phones allow you to use the volume button as the capture button.
Gridlines and rule of thirds
Turning on the gridline option provides your screen with an overlay of horizontal and vertical lines to create 9 equal areas of boxes. You can use this to align your photos properly or, better yet, to easily use the rule of thirds. The rule of thirds suggests that the subject should be aligned on either the vertical lines or horizontal lines or their intersection. Contrary to the conventional style of focusing the subject on the center, you can draw the viewer’s attention more towards the subject using the rule of thirds. If your subject is a vertical object like a standing person, building, or a bird, try aligning them on either the left or right corner of the frame. Try to align them on the top or bottom part of the frame if your subject is horizontal like a sealine or the horizon. If your subject happens to be facing or moving in a certain direction, make that direction your space to give viewers a sense of idea about where they’re going.
However, there are times when you should not follow this. Like when your subject is the scenery like a big village or when your subject needs to look dominant. In such cases, you would be better off just positioning the subject in the center of the frame.
Symmetries can be a great way to create a strong photo as they are instantly noticeable and eye-pleasing. The perfect balance between two halves of a photo can appear really mesmerizing to the human eye. Symmetry is present in a lot of places, more than you think of. Nature is full of symmetry; flowers, honeycombs, snowflakes, and even many animals, including humans, are inherently symmetrical, at least on the outside appearance. There are three types of symmetry you can utilize to create a beautiful photo. Vertical symmetry is when the left and right halves are in symmetry like the middle of hallways, bridges, or roads. Horizontal symmetry is when the top and bottom are in symmetry like reflections. Finally, radial symmetry is when symmetry is in the center of an axis or point, like ripples of water or petals of a flower directing outwards.
Since most mobile photos are taken straight on, which is a very conventional method, try experimenting with different angles. Try shooting from a bird’s eye view, lying on the ground or placing something in the foreground as focus. Utilizing mirrors and reflections are great ways to capture photos with different perspectives. Photos taken from unusual or unique angles enhance the sense of depth or height, making it more memorable. You can pair this with the concept of leading lines. Leading lines are the edge or lines that lead the viewer’s eye to a certain part of the frame. You can place your subject along or at the end of the leading lines to make it more appealing. As perspectives can make the subject appear smaller or larger in size, create a unique pattern, or enhance depth perception, utilizing this technique can give life to photos.
If your subject is a person in a park and the frame has several other people, trees, tall buildings, then it might be hard to notice your subject at first sight. Your subject might disappear in the overwhelming details. Negative space refers to space outside of the subject, which does not have details. This technique can make your subject stand out strongly as everything else inside the frame lacks detail and helps catch the viewer’s attention instantly. For example, you can try positioning your subject in front of trees only so that your subject is the main detail only and the viewer can easily focus on them. This technique can also increase the sense of scale and give viewers a better idea of the subject’s size.
Photography, like most other skills, can not be mastered quickly. You need to be persistent and practice your skill constantly. Try tinkering with other features and keep learning more concepts in-depth. Refer to other great photographers’ work and you can find out what makes their work stand out from others. If you feel your photography skill has reached a plateau, you can try other gadgets like add-on lenses and tripods.