Delightful DIYS // Iphoneography

Let me start off by saying I’m quite sure that I’m not the best teacher on this subject. I don’t consider myself the best photographer, Thomas has taught me so much through our journey together, but I still have a lot to learn. With that said, so many great photographers out there are so clingy to their “secrets” that it’s challenging for anyone else to grow (and hey, even if someone does share their secrets, it’s not like their handing over their style, technique or personal touches). So I want to share what I DO know, and hopefully some of you’ll pull something outta this… With iphoneography (or androidopgraphy or whatever) being so HUGE right now and so assessable (compared to say, a fancy DSLR camera)… it’s fun to see what we are capable of. READY and go!

1. LIGHTING Really, iphoneography follows the same rules as any type of photography. And there’s a reason why you always see this as the first and most important “tip” to getting good photos – Because lighting is KEY. Natural light is best, or at least use “white” light. Over-cast days are best outside, or place your subject in moderate shade. Inside, your subject should be facing the window (rather than against it).
2. COMPOSE your shot. Just the same as you would with clients, pose your food or product (or yourself). When I take photos of my breakfast (ok, this is embarrassing to admit) I run it upstairs, put it on my shop table facing the window, position my meal and utensils then shoot. It’s a hassle really, but the result is more rewarding that simply snapping a quick photo just after whipping it up and putting it on the boring ‘ol cream-colored, scratched up counter in our badly-lit kitchen.
3. TAKE MULTIPLE SHOTS I’m talkin’, at least 10 but up to 30+ photos. Take as many as you have the patience for. Why? Because camera-phones do not have fast shutter speeds, so there’s a good chance most of your shots will be blurry. Take TOO MANY to ensure at least one good shot.
4. REVIEW Before destroying your strategically placed setup, check your photos and see if all is well. I’ve often missed annoying mishaps like a mug facing a strange direction or the cat licking her privates in the background. MM-HMM.
5. ENHANCE If you got a good photo, make it even BETTER. Brighten, sharpen and straighten. Get creative with your CROP. Sometimes closing in on a subject or turning an image upside down adds texture to a photo! I’ll sometimes edit my photos on the computer, with Adobe Photoshop CS3 or VSCO Film for best results… but if I’m just uploading them straight to instagram, I will use the apps on my phone. There are a TON of good ones, but my favs are Snapseed, VSCOCAM and Blender. On the subject of these apps…

  • Snapseed costs a little more than most apps, $4.99 to be exact… but its worth it. It’s a great substitute for Adobe Photoshop, it’s great for straightening, brightening and sharpening. There is also a Lightroom function where you can brighten specific spots rather than the entire image. advanced Tiltshift, intricate adjustment options and bulit-in filters make this app a must.
  • VSCOCAM is great if you want incorporate vintage tones (actually, it emulates the look of film). With VSCOCAM, you can use the built in filters or make smaller adjustments  with the tool section. I recommend making your minor adjustments prior to adding the VSCOCAM filters (even if you edit solely in VSCOCAM)
  • Blender is a great app if you add a filter to an image that you like, but feel is too strong. Place the overly-enhanced image on one end of the scale/slider, and the original on the other and create a happy medium in-between. There or also layering/blending options for further fun effects.

{ There are some other good editing apps too, like Filterstorm (editor), Squaready (framer), Camera+ (for filters), AnalogColor (for filters), Framemagic (collage-making) and Mopho to order prints of your instagrams. }

A lot of my images colors are dull and muted initially. But the the possibilities are in the post-processing. First enhance an image with brightness and sharpening, then and contrast. After that, add in your tilt-shift or filters to give the image flare!