iPhoneography Tips & Tricks

October 21, 2012Holly Sosa

I am obsessed with Instagram (follow me @ourhollydays).  Its such an awesome community.  I’ve met tons of rad Mamas on there & host my mail swaps on it.  I love being inspired by the photography & think it’s amazing that Apple created the iPhone, which has allowed us to experience photography in a whole new way.

I love my DSLR, don’t get me wrong.  But having my iPhone has enabled me to capture moments of our everyday life that I wouldn’t normally be able to.  If I forget my DSLR, no big deal.  I have my iPhone & won’t miss a moment.

Documenting our life is important to me.  My Grandma Sanford was always snapping pictures or taking video on her ginormous video camera.  And I am so thankful she did.  When I visit her house, I spend hours going through photo albums & reliving fun childhood memories & silly moments.  I want this for my kids.

I get a lot of questions about how I edit my iPhone photos or what camera I use.  People actually don’t think I’m using my iPhone! I definitely take that as a compliment!  So, I thought I’d share some of my tips & tricks to get a better quality iPhone photo.

First, I use the iPhone4S.  But I’ve used the iPhone3 & then the iPhone4 for a long while & my photos still turned out with the same quality.

CLEAN YOUR LENS.  This is something that I see a LOT on IG that frustrates me.  Dudes, just wipe it off a couple times a day.  You would be surprised how dirty that sucker gets.  Dirt gets trapped in there really easily.  Remember, it’s a phone too!  I just use my shirt.  If I remember when I’m home, I’ll use a cotton swab with a little window cleaner on it once every few weeks to clean it.  A clear lens makes clear photos.  Simple concept.

Use the tap focus.  The iPhone often needs a little help to focus on your subject, so give your screen a quick tap to make sure it focuses on the area you want it, too.  It will also help make sure the lighting is correct.  In the photo of Collin below, my screen was super dark & you couldn’t see him because of the light pouring in from the window.  So I tap focused on the table & that changed the way the lighting was viewed on the lens & I ended up with a great photo.

Just like in regular photography, lighting is key.  I prefer natural light & my flash is always turned off on my phone.  You need bright areas for good, clear, crisp photos.
Now for the fun part, apps & editing!  I use Snapseed for almost all of my photos.  It’s on the expensive side at $4.99 but it’s so worth it.  I use the drama effect on most my photos.  This app is also where people get that HDR effect.  I usually use a little HDR on my photos, too.  After Snapseed, I usually just upload my photos into IG & use the Nashville filter to give it some warmth.  I prefer the lighter/warmer filters. I like my photos to feel dreamy & light.  This is how I edit 90% of my photos & how you can get the same look.
Other great apps to use: Squareready helps fit your photos that won’t go into a square for IG ( like the very first photo of Collin in this post).  PS Express is helpful for getting rid of noise in your photos & has other helpful little tweaks.  EZy Watermark is what I use to add my watermarks to my photos before posting them on IG.
I also like to try different perspectives when I take photos.  Directly above your subject gives a nice view & if you have kids, it’s a great way to show your presence in the photo by getting some of your feet or other body part in the photo like I did in the above photo of Collin painting his pumpkin.  Too often we are left out of photos & I think it’s a creative way to show yourself as part of the memory.
Hope you guys found this helpful & maybe you’ll try a few of my tips!  If I don’t follow you on Instagram, leave your username here so I can be sure to do just that!

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