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Hey photographers! Happy New Year! The holidays have come and gone, we endured a bomb cyclone, and now we have a whole year ahead of us to create some killer photos. Perhaps you haven’t been too keen on bringing your camera out into the frigid temperatures lately. However, we can use the compact devices that we carry just about everywhere–our smartphones– to shoot memorable images in 2018. Here are some tips to elevate your photos:

Avoid zooming in! Doing so can negatively impact the quality of the photo, making it blurrier and pixelated. Get closer to the subject you’re shooting to ensure a clear, crisp image. 

Use natural light instead of flash– Your smartphone’s flash can be rather harsh and tends to overexpose whatever you’re photographing, so utilize any available natural light (or even artificial light such as streetlights or candlelight) to keep colors/tones true to what the naked eye sees. That way, if you need to edit the image and bring more light in, you’ll have a much easier time lifting the exposure while preserving the details of the photo.

Attach an external lens– Want to add even more quality and dimension to your smartphone photos? Try using an external lens made specifically for iPhones and Androids. To find out more, check out our previous post on the best lenses for your smartphone!

Use camera/photo apps– There are countless apps out there that provide more control over the actual process of taking a photo, one of them being Camera+. This app allows you to adjust exposure and focus separately, bring more clarity to the image, explore different shooting modes, and so on. There are also superb editing apps such as VSCO and TouchRetouch–the latter allows you to literally erase unwanted objects and other content from your photos.

Focus on perspective– How can you tell a story through the photos you take? How many different ways can you frame the shot? Can you find various angles, apply the rule-of-thirds, and play with negative space to make your subject really stand out? Even if you don’t own a professional camera, the creativity you bring to your photos is what really matters, and you’ll find that you can take some pretty amazing photos with the little device in your hand.
Happy shooting!
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