Top tips to take professional looking images on your smartphone

Top tips to take professional looking images on your smartphone

Are you looking to improve your business photography but don’t have the budget yet for a professional branding photo shoot?

Follow our 3 main elements and tips to create fresh looking images for your social media channels and website.

* ELEMENT 1 – SHOOTING FOR BUSINESS
The best camera we have; is the one that is with us all the time. Phone photography has became a powerful force – 85% of images taken in 2017 were on smartphones.

Composition
Get Close

Don’t worry about standing far away – get close to the action! This helps remove all distractions.
Rule of 3 Things are better in 3’s.
If it has a perfect partner or 2; then pop them in the background. It creates calm, peace and balance to create a pleasing image.

Lighting
Natural Window Light

Lighting is the most important factor when photographing anything. Natural, sidelighting is key for bright, pleasing and natural looking images. Place the window light to the left or right of your set up for instant, professional results.

Reflectors and / or Artificial Light
Reflector

If the image is still a bit dark, pop a reflector to the opposite side of the natural light to bounce back in.
Artificial light
We cannot always photograph in day light, invest in a LED light for great artificial results.

Backgrounds & Props
Props

Adding props brings purpose and vision to your images. Clients can visualise you or your product by doing so. Crockery, napkins, handbags, plates, magazines, make up, journals; all add context.

Don’t let the background pull your attention
– Make sure that your background is plain and won’t detract from the subject being photographed.
– Some cameras have a “portrait” or blurry mode to do just this. Have a look in your menu / settings.
– Have a think of what backgrounds would work well for you.

* ELEMENT 2 – SHOOTING SELFIES & LIVE VIDEO
Your customer wants to know who they are doing business with. They are nosey, they want to know you. They want to connect with you in a human way.

Angles
NEVER Hold Camera Pointing Up Eye level. Always hold your camera or laptop at eye level or slightly above eye level pointing down to your face. That is easy with a phone, but laptop is a bit more difficult. Prop it up on something tall that will bring it to the correct distance.
Keep Steady
The last thing you want is blurry photos of you or the live video moving all over the place. Try to keep steady and remain at a steady movement if you are walking / doing a tour.

Lighting
Natural light

Window light is our friend. Soft, natural light is perfect for selfies and reflects light back into our faces to make us look fresh! No light, creates dark, grey shadows that can lead to grainy photographs.
Selfie Ring Lights
Artificial LED lights are great little devices that can pop onto our smartphones, but they do look odd if at night and a dark background. Oddly, they look beautiful during the day to help fill any shadows!

Surroundings
Clutter free

Your surroundings are just as important as yourself. Make sure the background is clutter free and not distracting.

Relevant
If you are going live / selfie to talk about your new product, but you are on the school run; is it relevant? Think is it a turn on or turn off for your clients.

* ELEMENT 3 – EDITING PHOTOGRAPHS
Photographs are made to be edited. It isn’t cheating, it is purely enhancing the image to make it a finished piece of art work.

There are 5 main areas that apply to editing our images and 1 area to be aware of.
CROP – Keep the aspect ratio the same as original, otherwise you will end up with an odd shaped image. Crop out unsightly elements and straighten levels.

Brighten – As photographs are taken, the way to finish them are with a little editing – brightening an image can make a huge impact.

Contrast – When brightening, sometimes you will need to boost contrast slightly for more oomph.

Colour – Saturation and brightness are the settings to add warmth and colour. A little goes a long way.

Effects and filters – Be aware of filters as they can look over processed. If you find one that you like the look of that fits in with your style, then great. But be mindful that it can look “over cooked”.

* Next steps:

Set smart goals
– Take a photograph every day. It doesn’t have to be for business, just for fun.
– Practice, practice and practice some more of the skills discussed today.
– Start to look at other account photos that you like. Build a style that you resonate with, but what your customer would enjoy too.

We hope this has been helpful for planning your business photography! Send an email today for full information and availability to [email protected] or contact us through our website.

Happy snapping!

Stephanie.

Find us on socials – @SummersPhotographyUK and @ThePhotographyAcademy

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