5 Ways to Take Better Photos with Your Smartphone

Updated: Dec 17, 2019


One of the most important parts of your online business is your photos - frustration can reign in when your photos don't come out looking the way you expected. Leaving you a little less than confident in the product your presenting.

I feel and have felt your pain, so let's get the healing started.....



5 WAYS TO TAKE BETTER PHOTOS WITH YOUR SMARTPHONE




YOUR LIGHTING


Shoddy or insufficient lighting will change the quality of your photos, causing them to appear grainy, dim and hard to see.  For best practice, try to take pictures in natural lighting. 


If you don’t have access to natural lighting, it’s a good idea to invest in lighting equipment.  You can find lighting kits online for about $50 – but you can also upgrade in increments if you don’t have $50 to invest at one time. 


I bought my tripods and bulbs separately, purchasing things as I went – but if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t have just invested in a kit initially -  I learned through trial and error that lack of lighting is HUGE – I wasted a  lot of time taking photos in dim light – yikes.


When taking your pictures, don’t point the lens towards the light – this will give too much exposure – your photos will be bright – but that’s the gist of it, they’ll be grainy and it’ll still be difficult to see the details. 


Also, try to take pictures in a way that the light is above you or behind you. If you would like to learn more about camera position, here's a link to Expert Village's video on YouTube "Photography Lighting & Equipment Tips: How to Position Lights for Photography".




INVEST IN A TRIPOD

You’d be surprised to know how much our hands shake when taking photos.  Even with a steady hand, taking photos free hand can cause a slight blur due to movement when the photo is snapped.  For clean, crisp photos – a tripod can do wonders – you can find mini tri-pods for as low as $5 with most major retailers.




CLEAN YOUR PHONE & CAMERA LENS

Smudges anyone?  Oils from your hands or dust can make your photo blurry and grainy – light is not able to pass through the lens freely because of an obstruction of fingerprints, smears or dirt. 


This is one of the simplest solutions for better photos that can easily be overlooked.  Know this one from experience too – clean your lenses it makes a huge difference.

Bulk Cleaning Wipes from Dollar Tree - $36 Case (36 wipes)





PHOTO ANGLES


Until you get really good it, take photos at more than one angle of the subject – light hits things in different ways, depending on the position of the subject and where the light is located. 


Taking photos from different angles will give your store some variation, when snapping the photos, you may not see many changes during that actual photo taking, but during photo choosing - you’ll notice that minor changes in the angle can really make a big difference in the quality and appeal of your photo when creating listings


Best of all the more you do this, the more knowledgeable and efficient you’ll be in the long run.




PHONE SETTINGS


a. If you have an Android don’t use zoom – Android phones don’t have an optical lens, so when you zoom, you’re not actually getting a tighter shot, you’re really just making the picture bigger and then cropping it. 


The image will be grainy and will lack detail.  This is one settings android users should avoid...On the other hand - iphone is different - Certain models of the iphone do have an optical lens, so a true zoom is an option for many iphone users.


Check to be sure that you have one of the phones with two lenses to ensure that your photos are true to detail.


b. Don’t use the flash – the photos can come out smeared looking, strangely colored and most times a little blurry. 


The LED light on your smartphone turns on and off at a long interval leaving enough time for the subject or yourself to move slightly, causing the pictures to be blurry.  It gives a strange hue to the subject and can turn out to be really harsh looking


c. Learn your phones functions - if you really want to learn about all the functionality of your camera, take a little time to learn the purpose of your phone camera settings. 


There are automatic settings built in, but if you really want to learn the aspects of taking better pictures with your phone, get to know the functions and their purpose.


d. Download photo editing apps – there are many apps to choose from – Google play has many free apps that can be downloaded – read reviews and do a little research before downloading...




RECAP

Pay attention to lighting and invest in lighting equipment and a tripod to avoid blurry or grainy pictures. Clean your phone & lens, photograph from different angles and learn your phones functions to get more experienced and efficient - if necessary look for apps to download for more ideas.


I hope this article has been helpful in pointing you in the right direction to better photos.  With some practice and a little research, you’ll be taking photos like a champ – as you get better, you’ll get more efficient and can create cool ways to showcase your products for more attention and more sales.



Happy Poshing!


- Nykole

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