Phone Photography Tips

I’ve been asked to share some photography tips, so keep your eyes open for a few posts here on the Vitala blog relating to photography. This one will focus on some tips and tricks for using your phone to capture some of your everyday moments.


Now I know that some people will say that a phone isn’t the same as a ‘real’ camera. It’s true, a phone doesn’t have all the capabilities of a digital SLR, or even that of a point and shoot camera, but there has been huge improvement in the quality and capabilities of in-phone cameras over the last few years. The number one benefit with a phone is that you usually have it with you, which makes it an easy go to for capturing those day to day moments.




The most important aspect of photography, regardless of camera, is lighting. Good lighting makes a picture, and the most flattering light is natural light! Turn off your flash and bring your subject or object near a window or head outdoors. Rotate your subject and see how the shadows fall, and if you’re photographing a person, look for a catch light (light reflection) in your subject’s eyes. This might feel time consuming at first, but once you know what to look for, it quickly becomes second nature.


I have an iPhone 5S, and I find that my photos are often slightly under exposed by the camera. Did you know that if you tap on a darker area (prior to taking your photo) on the screen it will adjust the exposure for you? Using the HDR option (High Dynamic Range – which has your camera take multiple images at different exposures and combines them into one image), is a great option for settings with lots of contrast (ie an object in front of a bright sky).




I use editing software that allows me to adjust exposure, add filters, crop as needed and share with various social media. My favourite app is PicTapGo (which, unfortunately, is only available for iPhone at this point). It’s very user friendly and allows you to layer, adjust the intensity of the filters, save your most used recipes, and best of all, share images not cropped into a square for Instagram. Other great apps to check out for editing are Afterlight, VSCO and Snapseed. Prices range from free to$1.99.


Image Backup


One of the most important aspects of phone photography, is backing up your images. Because I use my phone to capture memories that are important to me, I’ve always been a little worried (read: super paranoid!) about losing these images. A combination of DropBox and iCloud relieves me of this worry. Both automatically back up your photos and allow you to access them online from your computer too. Dropbox also allows you to delete the photos from your phone but you can still access them from the app. This is a great way to free up space on your phone.


Photo Books


Finally, don’t forget to print out your pictures! In this digital age sometimes we forget the value of a printed image. Even with multiple back-ups and digital viewing options, nothing quite replaces having a real photo in your hands or on the wall. I’ve recently started looking at options to create some photo books and a few that have caught my eye are Chatbooks (you can even print Instagram hashtagged pictures right from their app on your phone) and Artifact Uprising.


Have any phone photography tips to share? I’d love to hear them.


-Rachel (Community Engagement and Sales Coordinator at EcoDairy)