10 Smartphone Photography Tricks from Adrian Jose Velasquez Figueroa

Whether you shoot with a Smartphone or pro camera, there are three rules of photography you must always follow. Have an excellent eye to create interesting scenes, use quality lighting and understand depth of field. But Adrian Jose says there is more to this as he shares 10 of his Smartphone photography tricks with you.

1) Take your time

Like the rules in professional photography, Smartphone photography also requires composing your image according to Figueroa. So take the extra second to compose your image adding interesting subjects, varying the angles and exploring lighting. That extra second to compose will immensely improve your images.

2) Employ rules of composition

Find new ways to compose your image using the rule of thirds. Aim to place your subjects or the important features on your photo on one third of the canvas (that is up, down, left or right of the beginning of your frame). Don’t worry if you didn’t use this trick while out in the field; you can improve the image through cropping in post-processing.

3) Get close to the subject

Zooming in with your Smartphone always destroys the quality of the image says Adrian Jose. The best thing is to move closer to your subject. This not only improves the quality of your image but it also makes the photo more intimate especially if it’s a portrait of a person. Alternatively, you could get a smartphone zoom lens to get closer and still maintain quality.

4) Turn off your flash

Smartphone camera is just too much. It creates weird shadows, highlights, unwanted reflections or plainly kills all the colors in your image. Replace it with good natural light which is much softer. Unless necessary, always avoid your Smartphone flash unless you can tone it down with a flash diffuser.

5) Use a Different App

Don’t limit yourself to the standard camera app your phone comes with, there are plenty of other options you can explore. There are third party apps with added features like focus and exposure adjustments. Some good apps for Adrian Jose Velasquez Figueroa to try include Camera+, Camera Zoom FX, or ProCamera.

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6) Learn Your Camera App Settings

A lot of 3rd party apps allow you to make additional adjustments besides your usual brightness and zoom. There are three important settings to know to improve image quality: ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture. There are camera apps with more advanced settings, so find a tutorial on how to use them before going out to shoot.

7) HDR Magic

HDR or High Dynamic Range adds an interesting texture to your images. However, use it sparingly and only where shadows and highlights are well balanced. If you are in doubt, set HDR to automatic or use a third party app that focuses solely on HDR imagery.

8) Go easy on filters

Not every Instagram filter will work on your image. First understand what you want to achieve in terms of the mood and feel of the final image. Let the emotion you wish to evoke guide you on the right filter to use.

9) Hone you editing skills

Filters aren’t always the answer, learn how to edit your images from scratch. Editing puts more control in your hands as you play a tad bit with saturation, grain, fill light or contrast. Just start small with editing apps like VSCO and Snapseed. Practice eventually makes perfect.

10) Clean your lens

Your lens picks up dirt first especially when you touch it all day. Always clean your lens before you start taking photos. It keeps your images tack sharp and good looking.

Adrian Velasquez is an accomplished entrepreneur from Venezuela who holds the positions of director, president and treasurer in five Panama companies. He mentors young entrepreneurs ushering them into the world of business. In his own time, he loves taking and sharing photos of what he fancies.

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