World Photography Day—here are some tips for smartphone travel photography
‘A picture speaks a thousand words,’ which simply means a picture is worth a thousand words. In today’s scenario, we can’t just agree more. We all are photographers to some extent, without the tag of ‘professional photographers,’ but that does not keep us from exposing our talents.
Today’s social media is an example to this. The platforms enable even an amateur to grab eyeballs and enjoy some instant fame. Now, if you are not aware of white balance and shutter speed, that does not just mean that your pictures won’t be great. At times ‘fluke’ too can work wonders and take you places; the only important thing is―never stop trying.
And to give wings to your passions, your smartphone will serve your purpose, it is better than you think. This article will be focussing on two things, travel and photography. So, here comes some tips to take better travel photos with your smartphones, which will help you improve your result dramatically. And the timing cannot be more appropriate than World Photography Day, which is celebrated on August 19.
Wipe the lens
Let’s start with basics; and the first thing to note is wipe the lens. Since most of our phones don’t have a sacred case, they are casually kept in pockets or in our handbags, thereby collecting all the dust. While travelling, a fleeting moment has to be captured with great finesse, and during that moment, you just can’t stop to clean your lenses; so better be prepared.
Know the limits of your smartphone
First, understand what your smartphone is capable of doing. Stop yourself from over-expecting. While most cell phones have a single lens and wide-angle focal length, there are models with dual lens in which you get a bit more versatility with the slight zoom. Either way, know what you are zooming at. If you think your smartphone can zoom into the top of Eiffel Tower, you will face only disappointed as the resulting image will be pixelated close-up.
Then shuffle around the ‘settings’ to learn their specific functions and experiment how they will affect your photos. Check if you can shoot in ‘manual’ option, which helps in turning images from grainy to great.
Opt for natural light condition
There may be times when you capture images via a cell phone, the result is incredible, however, there is something called low-light conditions, where most of us struggle. Most smartphones are not enhanced with high-end technology to counteract a dark environment without reducing the quality of images. But, if it becomes absolutely necessary to take a photo at night, try to click with some artificial light.
Get a better camera app
Yes, one of the hacks of capturing great travel images is to download a third-party camera app instead of using the one that comes installed on a phone. The third-party apps are enhanced with high-end features enabling your smartphone to shoot a bit like a DSLR with manual settings and option to shoot RAW, which is basically an uncompressed type of file allowing you more flexibility to edit your images.
Play with ‘focus’ and utilise exposure compensation
You need to play a bit with your ‘focus’ option in your phone. If it is not adjusted right, tap the screen and adjust the focal point. Again, most of the phones and even the built-in apps come enhanced with the exposure compensation, which actually helps to lighten or darken an image.
Grab some additional smartphone accessories
Your phone is called smartphone for a reason, and with appropriate accessories, you can expand the functionalities of your phone beyond expectation. Some accessories that you can consider adding to your shopping cart are flexible tripod, wide angle pro lens, Bluetooth remote control, and extra memory card.
It is often considered one of the most important things of travel photography. Capturing landscape images via a smartphone can be quite easy. The most important thing to consider while trying to get a good shoot is exposure control. Exposure typically means how light or dark you image will come out overall.
Thus, you don’t need expensive DSLRs to capture great images. Further, the load that huge cameras add to with heavy gear and other equipment, is enough to put a kink in your neck and shoulders. All in all, smartphones are best for travel photography. They are always in your pocket; images that you capture via smartphones can be easily transferred and shared; and the best part is that you can directly post it on social media. With more likes on your photos, your ‘barometer of popularity’ will see some action for sure.