When you think of fall, you think of one thing only: a photoshoot, right? Because that’s what certainly what we’re thinking of, and now, what we’re going to help you set up to take the best fall photos this season with just your phone:
1. Learn your phone’s abilities
Before you get started, it’s important to first know your limitations, along with what settings you’re able to customize to make the best out of your setup. While having better specs (megapixels, primarily) will help in getting a clearer photo, you can still impress even with an older model. Open up your camera app and using the auto focus mode, check to see how it reacts to light exposure and movement (you can do so by tapping on the screen where you want it to focus). Check to see if your camera app gives you the option to go into manual mode, and play around with the settings there (shutter speed, white balance, etc) until you feel comfortable with it.
2. Lighting, lighting, lighting!
Did I mention lighting? Possibly the top factor to consider when taking photos, make sure you are exposed to as much natural light as possible. It’s harder to fix or adjust the light in a photo in post-production than to simply find a spot with decent lighting in the first place. But since we are talking about a fall photoshoot, your “studio” is actually the outdoors, so you already got that box checked. But remember that too much of a good thing—aka direct sunlight—is not all that good, in truth. So try to schedule your shoot for either just two hours after sunrise, or two hours before sunset, when the light isn’t as harsh. If you must take it in the middle of a sunny day, try to find a shady area, where the direct sunlight won’t add too much exposure to your photo.
3. Rule of thirds
This is a common practice amongst photographers, with the general idea being that your photo/shot is split up into nine sections in a grid, and your goal should be to place your subject in the left or right third of an image, leaving the other two thirds more open. This will ensure you get a well composed photo with a pleasing eyeline. And most camera apps nowadays will have a grid feature in the settings that you can turn on, and easily see how you are composing your shot.
And we’ve reached the final step: editing. After you take all your photos (make sure to shoot as many as possible—easier to whittle down than scramble to make the few you do have work), enhance those gorgeous colors with some light post-production editing. You can do this in your camera app’s native settings, or download an external free app like Adobe’s Lightroom (iOS, Android) to take your photos from good to “how did you take that??”
Got your own tips? Let us know in the comments below!