To create the most beautiful photos and memories possible, it isn’t essential to obtain supreme photography skills or a fancy, expensive camera. Instead, learn more useful phone photo-taking hacks. It’s surprising that our cell phone cameras contain many amazing photo features “hiding” in plain sight. There are multiple ways to improve your photos on your phone without spending more than five minutes adjusting settings and taking a few trial shots. When you print, they will look like professional shots.

Embrace the rule of thirds

Pros know that centering your object makes for a boring photo. Yet, many of us do it. One trick is to use the gridlines on your phone to ensure that you are creating more interesting photographs. With any cell phone camera app you can activate this feature. Play around with taking photos with the object in the lower right corner or the upper left corner. Compare photos and see how they differ. From there, you may find a style optimized for your photography.

Rule of thirds
Photo by Julie Tupas on Unsplash

Expose hidden brightness

An amazing trick to avoid using the flash on your camera phone is to use the natural brightness adjuster. When you push on your camera screen within your camera app a brightness scale will pop up. Slide this scale up or down to naturally brighten or darken your photo. Depending on background light and other variables, this will help capture more vivid evening photos or will neutralize bright widow light behind your subject. Try photographing the same item in brighter and darker settings and see how the photo will vary drastically.

Get closer!

We’ve all tried to print photos that look grainy or that look great on the phone but blurry when printed. A trick to capture great shots is to get closer to your subject. Especially when photographing kids who tend to move non-stop, crouch on the floor next to them within a few inches or feet. When snapping that amazing Instagramable restaurant meal: practically dunk your phone in your dish and lift it higher for more vivid shots.

Think like a journalist

The raw, candid and unexpected photos that journalists snap make them captivating. Think about what you love most about someone and how to capture the joy they radiate when they’re at their happiest. Maybe it’s catching your husband while he’s gardening or your mom while she sings your daughter nursery rhymes. The selfies and group shots are fun and they serve their place. But it’s the quality time, the hobbies and the unique attributes that the lens catches when the subject doesn’t know it is there – that’s how to truly bottle love in a photograph.

Although these tips will spark your journey as a personal photographer, there are scores of Pinterest pins and articles to improve your photography skills. Try out new tricks and see which ones work for you. With time, you might discover an extreme difference in your photos. When printing your photos, it’s worth taking the extra steps to edit, filter and crop. However, much of the magic starts when you first click the button and take the photograph.

Phone photography
Photo by Mack Johns on Unsplash

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