I’m a portrait photographer. I am obsessed with my Nikon FX and DX bodies and lens collection, but the majority of my memories are captured with my smartphone. In fact, most of what I post on my social media personal pages are taken with my humble Iphone 5. Surprised? Don’t get me wrong, I do take a ton of pictures with my DSLR, but after a few years of toting that monster around, I just got tired of everything it took to actually see my memories, and how much I actually missed in the process (adjust the exposure, take the picture, convert file, sort, adjust, edit, put in a folder, print…hopefully sometime in the next 3 years).
I told myself in 2014 after my daughter was born, that I could be not just content, but thrilled with the pictures that I take with my phone’s camera, and I would be selective and discerning in what I kept, posted, and printed. Now, of course these don’t replace the pictures that I take and have taken professionally (yearly family and individuals, 1st birthday, ect) and occasionally I do still like to pull out the ‘ol DSLR to get some creative shots that I just can’t get with my phone, but for the everyday moments I like that I can just pull out my phone, capture the moment, delete the blurry pictures, and not miss a moment. Seriously, Life is too short to miss those little moments fussing with some settings and JPEGS. I wanted to share a little bit of the enlightenment I've come across on the proper use of a smartphone camera so that you can photograph your kids, your family, your dog, your Pinterest project, yourself, your coffee and whatever else needs remembering with confidence!
Quite a few individuals have asked that I teach a class, but with my kid's schedule, I'm afraid this is the best I can do right now. At first I wanted this to just be just one blog post, but after I started typing, I realized that just wasn’t going to cut it, and I’m pretty sure no one was interested in reading a Smartphone Photography Thesis, so I broke it into 7 mini posts ending with a 52 week challenge (clearly, you are not required to participate in the challenge to benefit from the information, but I hope you do, because it will give you a chance to practice all of this). I hope to post at least once a week on this subject.
Here is what I plan to talk about:
No More Blurry Pictures: basic lighting
Prepping your lens (yes, this is a thing you need to do) and finding light that will work with your smartphone's sensor
Creativity: angles and details
Tips on how to photograph what you feel, instead of just what you see
Getting the Shot: anticipation and timing (and timers)
It’s not all about the shot, it’s all about the few seconds leading up to it
Editing: Sorting and perfecting
How to approach the daunting task of narrowing images down and some basic editing techniques (and apps that I use along with filters)
Never ‘Upload All’: Posting and printing
Platforms that I like and how I choose what to share, and what to print (I rarely do both!). Also, I'll share a really awesome app that I recently discovered for printing.
52 Week Challenge
A different challenge each week—let’s hold each other accountable, and feel free to share your images on my Facebook Page
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