From my content track session at TBEX Europe 2014, here are some handy tips on how to do more with iPhone photography. We start with things to think about before you shoot, tools to use while shooting, and apps for editing after you shoot.
How to do more with iPhone Photography - TBEX 2014
How To Do More With
Let’s start with BEFORE you shoot. Here
are some things to keep in mind! Take
LOTS. Never snap just one, check what you
have before you leave scene, give yourself
choices in editing later.
ANGLES. Get low, higher. Overhead. Bend
down to street level. Come at it from
LIGHT. Look for where it’s coming from.
This is the same photo, with light behind &
light on faces.
COLOR. It’s important. Can be a pop. Don’t
let it overwhelm.
B&W. Some pics are way stronger in B & W.
Use contrast strongly if you go that way.
Buildings, lines, or when color is
OPPOSITE. This is the cheat rule. If you
can’t remember all this other stuff, then
remember to take a bunch and try the
opposite of what you just did. Close/far.
Light front/back. Straight on/side/overhead.
FRAME. Look for natural frames, help
anchor photos or emphasize subject.
LINES. Leading lines make you want to go
into the picture. Give a photo great interest.
THIRDS. Imagine a grid laid over your
image. Like a tic tac toe board, dividing it
into thirds horizontally & vertically. Instead
of centering things dead on, try to place
objects of interest along those lines. Or at
the intersections of lines.
GRID. If you need help visualizing the rule
of thirds, turn the grid on your phone on.
Now let’s talk about things to NOT DO.
Bless your heart is our way of saying
“Don’t be an idiot” in the South. FLASH.
Don’t use it, you don’t need it. It flattens
and washes everything out. DIGITAL
ZOOM. Don’t zoom when you shoot, zoom
later when you’re editing. BROWN FOOD. It
might be tasty, but it looks like poop on
WHILE YOU SHOOT: some great tools.
AE/AF LOCK. Click for focus, but hold to
EXP ADJ. Roll that little sun up to lighten,
down to darken.
TIMER. Set your timer for 3 or 10 seconds.
Works on regular or front-facing camera.
Great for selfies or when your camera
needs to be still (no shake).
HEADPHONES. You can fire your camera
with the up volume button on your
TRIPOD. Great for use with timer or
headphones – keeps things still, allows you
to be in shot. Can get a great, fairly
inexpensive one from photojojo.com. Not
sponsored, just love the site.
LENSES. You can get external lenses –
again, I love these photojojo ones –
affordable, and you can attach to your
phone while the case is on. Not true for
MACRO. Beautiful photos but not super
practical. Have to get verrrry close.
WIDE. Think this would be super helpful for
buildings, areas where you want to fit a
little more in the frame. This is regular vs.
SELFIE STICK. Great to put yourself in the
surroundings, can really get a lot of the
location. Gives you a great angle. Also
really good if you’re trying to to take a big
groupie. More people fit. Or how about
using it as a makeshift tripod while you
AFTER YOU SHOOT: favorite apps.
SNAPSEED. It’s my go-to. Great for
enhancing but still having a natural look. I
use the tune image – always up your
contrast and saturation – and details.
Structure provides crispness to pic. DSLR-ish.
VSCOCAM. Great camera (instead of
default iPhone camera) and beautiful filters.
Also has toolkit for contrast, sat, details,
CAM. You can separate the focus point
from the exposure point in the VSCO
camera, move it around on the screen until
you have the light just right. Also? Whole
bottom bar of screen is button.
EX of VSCO. Previews and sliders, little diff
SKRWT. Corrects perspective. This thing is
EX of SKRWT. When you take a pic of a
building, door, window, etc, and one corner
is out of perspective, this can fix it. This is
what the editing screen looks like, there all
all these different ways you can stretch and
bend the picture…
TYPIC PRO. For all your text-on-photo
needs. Also has great design elements in it.
If you need a badge for your blog, you
could make it in here.
EXIF-FI. Starting to get a little nerdy, but
this can be handy if location tagging is
important to you. When you’re traveling
and you have data turned off to your phone,
and you take a picture, it doesn’t record the
location where you took it. So, if you want
you pic to come up when people are
looking by location, you need to add it. This
app lets you do that.
EX of EXIF-FI. You just open your picture,
and drop a pin where you were when you
took it. Then, when you post your picture to
instagram etc., it will come up with the
correct choices for that location.
MEXTURES. For heavier editing, ones that
obviously are edited. Fantastical rather
than realistic. Not just filters, but textures,
blending modes, and a toolkit with editing
tools and film looks. You can go on and on.
EX of MEXTURES. Also, these apps have
hashtags & communities – esp Mextures,
Snapseed, VSCO. Can see what folks are
doing out there!