Improve Smartphone Camera Skill !

smartphone_camera_gt11_thumb800Image from PC Advisor <http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/test-centre/mobile-phone/best-phone-camera-2017-3612824/&gt;
In these days, Smartphones have deeply invaded our lifestyle, also in photography. As smartphones develop, their camera technology is amazing. Everyone with decent smartphone can produce HD quality image. However, some people still don’t get how to photograph besides selfie.

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 2.37.54 am.pngImage from Pinterest <https://au.pinterest.com/pin/304907837245502237/&gt;

Here are few tips can help you to take better photos with your phones

1) Use Grid Function
KakaoTalk_Photo_2017-05-24-02-31-04_52Most of phones have grid function in their cameras. It will help you understand positioning and framing of the photographs. (Helps a lot with aligning!)

2) Focus KakaoTalk_Photo_2017-05-24-02-31-13Simple tap on the subject you want to focus will adjust white balance and exposure automatically. It will prevent auto focus to move around, having the main subject blurred. Also, it can be useful in outdoor environment where a lot of things are happening/moving.

3) HDR mode
KakaoTalk_Photo_2017-05-24-02-31-23HDR means, the camera will take 2 identical photos but in different exposure value. Then it will combine those 2 images to produce best image. It is useful to use in cloudy, rainy, dark or counter – light (when the light is facing the camera) environment.

4) Square
KakaoTalk_Photo_2017-05-24-02-31-27Personally, I thought this mode was made for Instagram back in the days. But it is really useful when you don’t have much understanding with 4:3 ratio photography. This will help you to focus more on the subject.

5) Subject
Kim_Rule of Thirds
Try to take a photo with only 1 subject in a frame. This will prevent the attentions to be scattered. It is important to show the main object without having too much attention to the other objects!

6)  Macro / Close up

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 2.55.23 amImage from Digital Photo Secrets <http://www.digital-photo-secrets.com/tip/2803/visual-design-using-texture-in-photography/&gt;

Most of phone cameras have >10cm minimum focus function. Sometimes, take a photograph ridiculously close to the subject. It may give you unexpected patters.

7) Shoot first! Filter Later!

Screen Shot 2017-05-24 at 2.57.55 amImage from ODYSSEY <https://www.theodysseyonline.com/how-filters-and-editing-are-changing-our-perception-beauty&gt;

There are millions of photo filters are available for people as well as photography application with cool filters on it. However, you may lose the chance to take a shot while you are searching for the app and selecting the filter. Taking a photo with basic camera app then apply the filter is never late !

 

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For new camera owners !

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It is always exciting to get your hands on new photographic equipments. I’m hoping to provide some tips that may be helpful for other photographers out there ! (being as one of camera – lovers)

 

What does matter the MOST in Photography ?

This could make people think “the most important thing in photography is a good camera!”. Well, having a nice camera and lenses can improve the end result, but it isn’t always the first reason that matters. Looking back at my experiences with photography and cameras, the most important element is the LIGHT !! Some say photography is an art drawn with the light. Light gives different feelings and sensations to photographs depending on many factors. Therefore, prepared photographers know how to utilise the available light or even add more lights in photographs !!

 

Settings : ISO? Shutter Speed? Aperture? 

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In a simple way; ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture are all related to the exposure of the photos. Eg) High ISO ➤ Bright image
Slow shutter speed ➤ Bright image
Low aperture ➤ Bright image.
These are the basic concepts you can apply when taking photographs!

However, their main roles are a lot more important and complicated.
► Aperture – Depth of Field
There are designated aperture value depending on lenses (You probably seen F00 written on the lenses). Lower the F value, brighter lens it is. It is tend to be expensive with lower F number. This value is important in deciding depth of field in the photographs. Lets have a look at example images below :

IMG_9202
Narrow depth of field = Low Aperture (F) value
L1010560
Wide depth of field = Higher Aperture (F) value

As we can see, less area is in focus on the first image and most area is in focus on the second image.

► Shutter speed – is object moving ? how fast?
It is essential to know how shutter speed on camera work when you are shooting objects that are moving (car, people, animals, etc) !! Incorrect shutter speed setting will result in blurry image.

IMG_2329
Slow shutter speed
IMG_2383
Fast shutter speed

Both of these cars were moving at about the same speed. Comparing both images we can acknowledge fast shutter speed pauses objects while slow shutter speed doesn’t. However, using slow shutter speed can sometimes result in interesting and cool images !

IMG_0106Here is the photograph of moving car, leaving its trail of light captured using slow shutter speed.

► ISO – Level of sensitivity
In basic terms, ISO is level of sensitivity of the camera to available lights. It is often increased in area where light sources are relatively limited (night time, indoor, etc). However, if ISO is increased too much, images will have grain/noise shown. ISO-200-and-ISO-3200.jpg
Image with ISO 3200 doesn’t look very nice and clean compared to ISO 200 image. Hence, in order to keep the quality of images, it is best to keep the ISO as low as possible. However, some photographs involve artificially created or increased ISO to give vintage look. (Auto ISO is very helpful when you’re not sure and it’s not a newbie setting!)

Taking photograph is all about photographer’s intention and creativity. There isn’t right or wrong answer in the image, but these are the basic knowledge that are helpful for photographers. The best way to improve your photography level is to shoot images often!!