The mobile network Three kindly invited me on a photowalk around London. The session focused on learning how to take photographs with a backdrop using a phone camera. I thought this was such a good opportunity as quite often I don’t take out my SLR camera and heavily rely on my phone for pictures. There was an option for us to borrow and use a Samsung 8s or an iPhone 8, but I opted to use the iPhone 8 Plus as I currently have an iPhone so I thought that would be most beneficial or me. I was so impressed with how my final images came out; all my pictures below are unedited. I’m going to share with you how to get the best out of your iPhone camera and general photography tips which I learnt during the day, and some of which can be applied with whatever camera you use.
It can be hard to work with natural light, especially when you haven’t got the sun to help you out. The picture below was taken at towards the end of the day and so the area around the buildings were a bit dark. To make the most of what I had to work with, I used the HDR feature at the bottom of the screen to make the area darker so it contrasted with the sky above. You can hold and slide up or down to adjust the amount of exposure.
There are a few ways in which you can add depth to a picture and make it more interesting:
- Rule of Thirds – Divide your screen into gridlines and then position your subject near the intersection of any two lines. If you go to the camera settings on iPhone, you can switch on gridlines so they appear when you are taking pictures. In my picture below, I positioned the lamp post in the top corner of my picture and left the remainder of the picture quite empty.
- Leading Lines – This is where the line in the photo leads from the foreground into the distance. This draws the attention of anyone who looks at the picture to follow it in the same way.
- Aperture – This is simply what you want to focus on in the picture. I use this a lot when I’m doing make up flatlays to emphasise particular products and blur the background. Portrait mode on the iPhone is a really quick and easy way to achieve this effect.
Is anyone else as extra as I am to find the perfect angle when taking a selfie? Well i am. After this session, I’ve learnt to treat product shots and landscapes no different. Although taking pictures from face on is “convenient”, moving around and taking pictures from a slightly lower angle, or from higher up is more creative and makes a picture just a bit more interesting. In the picture below, I took the picture from a slightly lower rather than straight on which created a sense of height from the dial to the bridge.