I was recently exhibiting some of my work at the Keswick Theatre by the Lake with a series of images called Lake District Moods. A few days into the exhibition I receieved a message from someone who had visited the theatre during their holiday……
"My wife and I are in the Lakes for a few days, staying near Windermere. Today we drove over to Buttermere and walked around the lake. The light during the afternoon was brilliant, however, I thought I managed to get a couple of reasonable images. Reasonable – until, in the evening, we went to a performance at The Theatre by the Lake and I saw your photographs of Buttermere as part of your Lake District Moods presentation – Buttermere Colours, Buttermere Light etc. Wonderful images, I was very impressed with your work. Unfortunately the brilliance of your work created much disappointment with my own. I guess I’ll just have to try harder, and hope for better light."
I’m not sure what type of camera he was using but this got me thinking about all the Smart Phone & iPhone pictures that are taken every day and how I could help to improve the images that people take and the memories they keep and share with others. Many of us have moved on completely from using a camera and only take pictures on the iPhone or Smart Phone in our pocket or bag.
Here are four quick tips to help you improve your pictures.
1. Learn how to use your camera software
You are probably familiar with the basic operations, of your device's camera, but did you know that your camera likely has some scene modes, too? Or panorama, HDR and bokeh features? Play around
2. Learn compositional basics
Start with the rule of thirds. Most smart cameras have gridlines to show the grid of the rule of thirds, which will help you position horizons or subjects. Check out my composition guide video on youtube.
3. See the light
Look for light that gives a scene shape, depth and makes things look interesting. Good light is especially important in mobile photography because you can't create much more interest with different focal lengths and varying depth of field.
4. Get an editing app
10 of the best are: Snapseed, VSCO, Filterstrom Neue, Enlight, Textures, TouchRetouch, SKRWT, AfterFocus, Lens Distortions, Superimpose. But you also have several B&W apps and long exposure apps that are worth taking a look at.
The best camera is the camera you have with you!
Look at the work of Julian Calverley, he has a book called #IPHONEONLY, with some incredible photography taken on his iPhone.