Editor’s Note: Uh, so, apparently, I wrote a whole little series on taking photos with your iPhone and never posted them. I was going to trash them, but then I looked at the little photos I took of my Button and it seemed a shame to just toss them aside! I was obviously behind the 8-ball on taking photos with my iPhone. If you are, too, this post if for you! If you are a pro like my friend, Ashley (@shackstagrams), then you could probably give me some tips! I welcome all comments and suggestions! xoxo
If you follow me on Instagram*, you will have surely noticed the influx of photos on my stream. I realized Lynda.com (my favorite website for online learning) had released a brief tutorial on photography and editing with your iPhone. I had always wondered how professional (and not so professional photographers) I follow got such beautiful photographs. So, I began an all-out geek-out on the iPhone camera and various editing apps. There are so many ways to get creative and I thought I’d share what I had learned so far with a series on iPhonography.
Let’s start with the iPhone camera:
Five iPhone Camera Tips and Tricks
*All photos are taken with my iPhone 4S with the iOS6 update.*
1. The Apple earphones work as a shutter release! Just hold up your iPhone camera and let it find the center focal point. Then click on the + or – key for the sound control on your earplugs. This is useful if you want to:
- set your iPhone up on a tripod and need a remote shutter to avoid camera shake (Wow, aren’t you fancy?!).
- take a shot that requires you to hold your phone at arms length and out to the side.
- not be so obvious about taking photos when you are out in public. You can pretend you are talking on the phone. I tried this out yesterday…
2. The volume buttons work as a shutter release. This feature comes in handy when you
- don’t have your earphones and want take a photo with your arm stretched out (and/or to the side). It’s just less awkward :)
- ask someone who doesn’t have an iPhone to take your photo. For some reason, telling them to press a button is easier because it’s just like a regular point-and-shoot camera.
- need to keep a better grip on our phone while taking one-handed photos. Think holding squeaky toy above your iPhone to get your kid to look at you while you take her photo.
3. There’s an AE/AF lock. Ha, who knew! (Obviously, not me). Just touch the focal point on your screen until the blue box pulsates and let go. You will see the AE/AF Lock on the bottom of your screen. This way, you can recompose your shot while keeping your subject in focus and correctly exposed. Tap your screen again to unlock the AE/AF feature. (This works with the iPhone 3GS and higher).
- AE/AF stand for Auto-Exposure/Auto-Focus.
- To understand more about exposure, I’d suggest reading The Pioneer Woman’s posts on What the Heck is Aperture Part 1 and Part 2. Ree Drummond does a great job of distilling otherwise complex information.
This was a great technique for taking photos of Avery at her new favorite place, the local park! No editing, just the AE/AF Lock. I also used my earphones as a remote shutter so I could look at Avery to get a good reaction :)
4. You can get a nice shallow depth of field. You know, so you get that blurry background effect otherwise known as bokeh.
- Tap on the object in the forefront of your camera so that the blue focus box light up. Be sure to hold your camera steady for a few second to allow your camera to focus before snapping the photo.
- Alternatively, you can focus on an object in the background and make the foreground blurry. This is most effective if the object/s in the foreground are very vlose to your camera lens. You also need to have several feet between the subjects in the foreground and background.
5. Siri will access your camera. Just say, “take a photo/picture/etc .,” and there ya go! This is useful when
- Okay, I have no idea when this would be useful. Still, it’s kinda neat.
About.com How to Use the iPhone Camera by Sam Costello
Lynda.com iPhone Photography, from Shooting to Storytelling with Richard Koci Hernandez
The Pioneer Woman What the Heck is Aperture? Part 1.
*You can find me under aimeedesiree. I set my Instagram settings to private recently. Avery is getting out of that babiness phase and I’d like to have a little more control over who sees all of the bazillion photos I post of her. I approve people after I check them out a bit. I mean, with all my tens of readers, I usually know you or know someone who knows you…or stalk your blog enough to know you are who you say you are :)