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Trip Notes: Shoot Like a PRO

6 Tips for Frame-Worthy Smartphone Pics 

 

1. Frame it Before You Snap it

It’s natural to click away at the cavernous span of the Grand Canyon, or to go shutter-happy on a glimmering, palm-fringed Caribbean beach. But taking the time to add key details will add pop to your images. Place a gnarled pine tree in the corner of the frame and the Grand Canyon gains some contrast. Center your ocean shot on a windblown kite surfer and you’ll add some interest to the shot…and a little perspective. Look at the size of those waves!

2. Avoid the Zoom

A mobile phone image contains only so many pixels. Zoom in with your fingers and you’ll merely blow up the image, spreading out those pixels and causing grainy or blurry results. Instead, move closer to your subject. Or, if you can’t, use the 2x telephoto lens on your iPhone, which captures close-up images without sacrificing photo quality. 

3. Hold it Steady 

Shooting in low light — perhaps a Hawaiian sunset or Budapest’s illuminated Chain Bridge after dark — requires a steady hand. And chances are you aren’t as steady as you think. Invest in a tripod specifically designed for smartphones to assure a good shot. Joby and KobraTech offer highly-rated, lightweight varieties for iPhone and Android devices. If you’re caught without, make do with a solid surface such as a brick wall or a boulder. 

4. Alter the Exposure

Smartphones think they’re pretty smart — and they usually are. But when it comes to low light, they often miss the mark. As the sun begins to sink, your mobile phone camera may up the exposure, resulting in grainy sunsets and muddy night skies. Instead, override your camera’s default settings, lowering the light enough to reveal that rainbow sherbet sunset. Lower it even more and try capturing the stunning black silhouette of your daughter admiring its beauty. 

5. Capture the Whole Thing 

Smartphones think they’re pretty smart — and they usually are. But when it comes to low light, they often miss the mark. As the sun begins to sink, your mobile phone camera may up the exposure, resulting in grainy sunsets and muddy night skies. Instead, override your camera’s default settings, lowering the light enough to reveal that rainbow sherbet sunset. Lower it even more and try capturing the stunning black silhouette of your daughter admiring its beauty.