Woman having her picture taken with a camera phone
Long gone are the days of rolls of film, multiple lenses, bulky cameras and tripods. Today’s smartphone cameras are so technically advanced that anybody is able to take good photos. But with a few extra tips and practice, you can take the best images from your mobile. 
Why is imagery important? 
Camera phone taking picture of graffiti
Imagery, whether it’s on your website, your social channels, presentations, literature or anywhere else, creates a feeling. Photos give meaning to your words and play a crucial role in design and marketing. 
Good photos can promote a positive impact and boost a user’s overall experience of your company. But bad imagery can also hurt your business. So, it’s important to ensure that any photos you take are as perfect as they can be. 
Top tips for taking great images with your mobile 
Camera phone taking picture of a bridge
Here are our top tips for getting fabulous images with your iPhone or Android or other smartphone and unlocking its true potential. 
1. Keep it steady. To take the sharpest photos, it’s important to keep the phone camera steady. Use both hands and keep your elbows into your body. If you’re struggling to keep the phone camera steady, you can use a tripod that’s specifically designed for smartphones to help you. They aren’t tall or bulky anymore; they are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, which sit on surfaces or can be attached to posts and even tree branches. 
2. Use the timer option. If you don’t have a tripod, use the smartphone’s timer option. Using this option when holding it with both hands or even putting it on a flat surface, will help to eliminate camera shake. Always make sure the camera is straight and that you are standing still. 
3. Use the natural light. Although this might not always be possible, aim to use as much of the natural light as you possibly can. This helps to prevent long shadows and creates a clearer image. Natural light will add depth and atmosphere to your photos. Use light to your advantage and turn off the flash. For example, to flatter a subject, put it in a shaded spot where diffused light will promote the image. For a cinematic look, put the subject between the camera and the light source, which creates a halo look. Different times of the day will give you different impacts. 
Sunrise over the sea - Photo by frank Mckenna
4. Play with exposure. The big advantage of smartphone cameras is that the technology automatically takes care of the details, like exposure. But if you want to take really impactful photos or get experimenting, play around with the exposure settings, such as brightness, and create a truly striking look. 
5. Don’t use the digital zoom function. Today’s smartphones incorporate a digital zoom but when you use it, the picture resolution is reduced. This is because the smartphone camera automatically crops and resizes the image, which could result in fuzzy photos and a lack of quality. Instead, get closer to the subject you are photographing. 
6. The ‘rule of thirds’. The rule of thirds says that for the most appealing images, position the subject at one of the points where the lines of a grid intersect. With a smartphone camera, you don’t have to imagine the grid lines. Simply go into your camera settings and turn on ‘grid’ and this will add a grid overlay to your image on the screen. At the same time, you can turn the grid to help you keep the horizon level. 
Camera phone taking picture of a plate of food
7. Take landscape shots. In most situations, you will need landscape shots as they are much more usable. For this, make sure you are holding your smartphone horizontally. The camera on a smartphone will always adjust the focus for you but if you need to re-focus the image onto a different subject, just tap the screen where the subject is located and the phone’s settings will automatically adjust. 
8. Use smartphone camera settings. First and foremost, set the smartphone to always take high-resolution photos. But there are also a range of other photo editing apps you can use. PicsArt and Snapseed allow you to add a variety of filters and other photographic effects to enhance your images. You can even add your favourite settings. Adobe Lightroom is a free mobile app for desktop image editing that smooths out blemishes and even removes some background details. 
9. Invest in an add-on lens. Yes, you really can add a lens to your smartphone camera. Although most of today’s smartphone cameras include several lenses, usually a normal, wide-angle and telephoto lens, you can invest in a macro lens that can be attached to your smartphone which will allow you to take photos that are really close to your subject. This will pick up amazing details in close-up shots. Alternatively, an ultra-wide fish-eye lens will help you create dramatic landscapes and get all your family and friends in one shot. An extra tip: keep your lens clean and clear of fingerprints or dust. Always use a soft, clean cloth to clean them. 
10. Send via email. When sending your photos to colleagues, website designers or other parties, try to send them via email rather than using an app. Many of the apps on smartphones will automatically compress the photos to a certain extent, which could affect the quality of the photo. 
Phone on a tripod taking a picture
If you’re planning on using your smartphone to take photos, get to know your phone inside and out. Play around with the camera functions to learn how they make a difference to a photo. Investigate the variety of photo editing apps available too as they can help you with a range of different effects. Editing photo apps can also be beneficial and add impact but be careful that they don’t detract from the quality of the image itself. 
Man crouching down to take a portrait picture on his phone

Tips for Getting the Best Images from Your Mobile - FAQs 

What are some recommended brands or models of add-on lenses for smartphones? 
For those looking to enhance their smartphone photography with add-on lenses, several reputable brands and models are worth considering. Moment lenses are highly regarded for their superior build quality and impressive image clarity, offering options like wide-angle, macro, and telephoto lenses. Another popular choice is the Olloclip lens system, known for its ease of use and versatility, providing a range of lens attachments for different shooting scenarios. Additionally, the Sandmarc lenses are well-reviewed for their robust construction and excellent optical performance, making them a great option for serious mobile photographers. 
How can I effectively use artificial lighting when natural light is not available? 
When natural light is not available, effectively using artificial lighting becomes crucial. Start by investing in a good quality portable LED light, which can provide consistent and adjustable lighting. Ring lights are particularly useful for portraits, as they produce a flattering, even light with minimal shadows. Additionally, softboxes and diffusers can help to soften harsh light from regular lamps or LEDs, creating a more natural and pleasing effect. Position your artificial lights to mimic natural light setups, such as side lighting for depth and dimension or backlighting for a dramatic silhouette effect. Experiment with different angles and intensities to achieve the desired look. 
What are some advanced techniques for using photo editing apps like Adobe Lightroom or Snapseed? 
Advanced techniques in photo editing apps like Adobe Lightroom or Snapseed can significantly enhance your images. In Adobe Lightroom, utilising the selective adjustment tool allows you to make precise edits to specific areas of your photo, such as brightening a subject's face without affecting the background. The app's tone curve feature is powerful for fine-tuning contrast and exposure, giving you greater control over the image's dynamic range. Additionally, exploring the color grading tools can help you create a cohesive color palette and mood for your photos. 
In Snapseed, the Healing tool is excellent for removing unwanted elements from your images, such as blemishes or distracting objects. The app’s Brush tool lets you apply effects selectively, such as increasing exposure or saturation in certain parts of the image. Snapseed also offers a range of creative filters and looks in its "Looks" section, which can be customised and saved for future use, allowing for a consistent style across your photos. Combining these advanced techniques can transform your images and give them a professional finish. 
it'seeze design team meeting
At it’seeze, our network of experienced website experts throughout the UK and Ireland are experienced in understanding what makes a good image and the impact it can have on your website. We make sure your website content also aligns with your SEO strategies, building a website that reflects your business and keeps your content relevant, engaging and on brand. Get in touch with us today to start your it’seeze journey. 
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