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How to take professional looking photos on your iPhone


We can all take pictures using our smartphones, but what makes some pictures stand out from the crowd? How can you take amazing pictures that are worthy of your brand’s social media feed or digital marketing campaign?  With the right tips and tricks you can turn a standard shot turn into something quite incredible, read on to find out more…

Burst Mode

When on a shoot, professional photographers will take a huge amount of shots but only select one or two. The reason? Well, every second, the subject will change ever so slightly, and even a tiny nuance could mean the difference between an average picture and the “money shot”.

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Most smartphone cameras have this technique, it’s called ‘Burst Mode’. Next time you’re taking a photo give it a go; simply hold down your shutter button and let the camera keep shooting. Once you’ve done this, simply scroll through the photos and select the best one. The only downside to this technique is by taking so many photos on your phone it will use a lot of space, so make sure to delete the photos from the burst to keep your storage optimised!

Rule of Thirds Grid

The “Rule of Thirds” is a technique that many photographers swear by when capturing a great shot. The rule is a guideline of where objects and backgrounds sit on the camera in order to create a visually appealing photo. The typical example of this would be having the horizon sit on the first third of the bottom of the screen and the subject sitting in the first of second third from the side.

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Most phones have the rule of thirds as a setting on the camera. Head into the Settings > Camera and enable the toggle labelled Grid. Your camera will now have the grid preloaded when you open the app.

Hardware Shutter

Some people may not realise, that using external hardware to snap a shot on your camera can make taking photos more versatile and easier to angle. Applying headphones are the best example of this. The volume controls on the wire can also be used to snap a shot. This means you can position your camera to the optimum angle without touching it and ruining the photo.

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All you need to do is plug in your headphone and open your camera. Then hit the volume button and presto! Up your camera angling by using a tripod to easily position your phone, especially if you want to be in shot of the camera.


High Dynamic Range (HDR) is a setting that a lot of phones now carry, that it allows images to produce a greater dynamic range of luminosity in comparison with a standard camera lens. A lot of people don’t fully understand the benefits of HDR on a camera and some don’t even know their camera has this function! You will find the HDR setting on your camera at the top next to the flash button.

A great tip to maximise the photos taken, go into Settings > camera and toggle Keep Normal Photo under the HDR setting. This means that your phone will keep the original photo as well as the HDR version. This can sometimes come in handy in conditions and backdrops where HDR can’t process the photo as well as the normal shot. This allows the option to keep the best version to maximise your images!

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Utilise Filters in Camera Mode

Filters are a wonderful thing. They can change an image into a masterpiece and can convey a mood purely on a specific colour change. What a lot of people may forget is that you can apply filters to the camera before taking the photo, not just editing it after. This gives you the creative freedom to find the perfect mood to make your photo stunning!

To do this, open the camera app and click the filter button located on the right hand bottom corner of the screen. Then scroll through the preloaded filters to find the best one.

A great tip for once you’ve taken the photo is to utilise the colour balancing tool located next to the filter button when editing the photo. This can enhance filters or even a standard photo without the filter needed! There are a great variety of options in this including Exposure, Saturation, Black Point and Cast.

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Now that you know some good techniques to get the most out of your phone camera, get snapping some great shots and let your artistic flare shine through!

If you’d like help with your photography, please get in touch with Cunning Plan team.