5 Tips for Taking Great Cell Phone Photos

My brother is coming into town for the holiday this weekend! I’m so excited! My siblings are literally the best. When family is in town, and when you have special events (like Thanksgiving dinner) you want to capture those memories! You don’t need to use your huge camera, you can take some great photos with just your cell phone, but you should know a few tips to make sure those pictures are super amazing. Who knows, you may even ditch your real camera for good! (all images included in this post taken with my cell phone!)


Clean your lens! The very first tip I’ve got for you is to wipe off your camera lens. Just the other week, I was standing with someone who was wondering why her shot wasn’t looking very good. I asked if she had cleaned off the lens of the cell phone camera, and she totally had forgotten. As soon as she cleaned it, her shot looked great again! It’s such a simple thing, yet so often overlooked. Your cell phone is constantly in your hand, and the lens is OFTEN dirty. You should really clean it before you attempt ANY pictures at all.


Don’t Zoom – Obviously, the zoom on your cell phone is only a digital zoom. There is no protruding lens, so it can’t really zoom. Digital zooming can come out pixelated and blurry, which you don’t want. I would just try to get as close to your subject as possible instead of trying to zoom.


Use the Gridlines – In the settings of most camera apps you can turn on the “gridlines” this will help you keep the “rule of thirds” which is a rule for taking quality pictures. You should have the main subject of the photo along the lines or at the cross-sections of the gridlines.


Hold it steady! – I like to try and rest my elbow on a hard surface, and hold the phone with both hands (both elbows resting on a hard surface). You can also pick up a cheap tripod like the JOBY Gorilla stand. The less your hand moves, the better your picture will be.

Look to the light – Pay close attention to where the light is coming from in your shot. You don’t want your subjects staring directly at the sun, AND you don’t want the sun behind them so their faces are all in shadow. Especially indoors, find the light source and use that in your photo. You want the light to illuminate your subject, so try to get it to do just that. Remember, you may have to re-position the subject of your photo if you can.  You may not be able to re-position the subject, so you can also try to re-position yourself. Try to take the photo from below, or from above! You can try a ton of different angles to get that exact right shot… and hopefully you don’t run out of space in the process. 😀



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Emilee Elder

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