12 Tips for Getting Better Photos from Your iPhone

tips for better iphone photography

If you’ve seen an iPhone ad, you know your phone is capable of taking incredible photos. The only question is how do they do it? You don’t have to be a professional photographer to get great shots. By using these 12 tips for better iPhone photography, you’ll seem like a professional.

Tips for Better iPhone Photography

1. Start By Filming

tips for better iphone photographyThe moment you try to take a photo, the subject moves. One of the best tips for better iPhone photography is to just start filming. Photos take instantly, no matter what type of light you’re in.

While you’re videoing, tap the opaque circle on the left side of your screen. The photo snaps without interrupting your video. You get the best of both worlds and memorable shots.

2. Get More Than One Image

Sometimes a photo needs more than a single image. This is where Live Photos is helpful. Create truly unique photos that encompass several seconds. The feature is turned on by default in iPhone 6S and later. Just tap to take a photo in Photo mode and you’re all set.

3. Take Pictures Upside Down

It might sound crazy, but you’ll get better depth by turning your phone upside when trying to take pictures of objects on or near the ground. This is ideal for nature shots, such as that perfect flower.

4. Use Grid Lines

tips for better iphone photographyWant to take photos like a professional? This is one of the easiest tips for better iPhone photography for lining up your shots perfectly. The grid setting allows you to use the rule of thirds for more balanced shots. According to this rule, your most important elements should be along the lines themselves or the intersections of the lines.

Go to Settings > Photos & Camera > Grid. Toggle the setting to On and you’re all set.

Related Read: 5 Photo Editing Apps for Quick Touch Ups Before Sharing

5. Stop Zooming

When you want to take a photo of something far away, zooming in sounds like the best approach. However, when you look at your pictures later, they aren’t as clear as you’d like.

The more you zoom, the lower the image quality. Instead, try to get as physically close as possible. Take your photo without zooming in. If you do zoom, only zoom in slightly. After you’ve taking your shot, crop the photo. This zooms it in naturally without affecting image quality.

6. Adjust the Manual Controls

It’s easy to just accept all the defaults and start taking pictures. That’s not a bad approach, but one of the best tips for better iPhone photography involves changing those defaults.

tips for better iphone photographyYour iPhone includes manual controls for adjusting your focus, exposure, and white balance, among other things. However, these three settings can drastically change the quality of your photos. For instance, a bright sunny day might appear darker when you take the shot. Adjusting the exposure helps you get the exact same light on your iPhone that you see in person.

The right settings depend on the type of shot you want. Jack Hollingsworth is a photographer who wants everyone to master their iPhone camera settings. His A Beginner’s Guide for Manual Control in iPhone Photography videos are the perfect start for learning how to change these three settings for better shots every time.

7. Master Portrait Mode

While Portrait Mode is only available for iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, it creates professional looking depth effects for portraits. It places the focus on your subject while cutting out background noise. The effect is stunning. Apple lists tips from professional photographers for getting the most out of this mode.

8. Use Burst Mode

When the action happens quickly, it’s impossible to get the perfect shot. So how do professionals do it? They take a series of rapid fire shots, which usually includes at least one perfect photo.

Burst mode allows you to take the same type of rapid fire shots, just with your iPhone instead of a large professional setup. When you’re ready, tap and hold the shutter button until you’re done. A counter appears showing you how many shots you’ve currently taken in that burst. Release the button when you’re done and then review your shots to see what you want to keep.

Related Read: Exploring Macro Photography with Your iPhone

9. Use Different Lenses

tips for better iphone photographyOne of the best tips for better iPhone photography involves adding a few accessories. After all, have you ever seen a professional photographer’s bag? It’s filled with different lenses to get the right shot based on lighting and subject.

While playing around with the focus and exposure helps, adding a few lenses gives you even more control. Maybe you want a fisheye look or that perfect macro shot. There are lenses for that. The best part is most of these lenses either come as part of an iPhone case or clip on for easy use.

10. Add Selfie Accessories

While your iPhone has a selfie mode that helps you take better selfies, sometimes you need a little extra help. For instance, you already know a selfie stick is a must-have for taking group selfies. However, lighting is often a problem. There’s only so many ways to adjust your camera settings to account for low light. Lighted cases and clip-on lights allow you to get the ideal lighting for any situation. Luckily, selfie sticks, tiny tripods, and lights are small enough to fit in your purse or pocket.

11. Account for Delay

The shutter delay is always a hassle when it ruins a once in a lifetime shot. Even a fraction of a second delay could result in a blurred image or the subject moving out of the shot entirely.

A few ways to avoid this are to:

  • Tap the shutter button quickly. Photos only take after you lift your finger.
  • Hold your iPhone as steady as possible to reduce focusing time.
  • Increase lighting. Low light results in focusing problems, which increase shutter delay.

12. Go Through Apple’s Tutorials

tips for better iphone photographyApple has created a series of quick tutorials filled with tips for better iPhone photography. For instance, you can learn how to experiment with color, how to shoot the perfect close-up, and how to create unique angles. All of them are free and well worth your time.

Related Read: A Beginner’s Guide to Smartphone Photography


Contribution by Crystal Crowder

About the Author

Crystal lives and breathes tech. She’s spent over a decade writing tutorials, reviews, and more on tech, business, and lifestyle sites. Her idea of fun is settling down with the latest tech and gadget news.