Taking smart photos with your smart phone

Dominic Howard tells us how to get the best snaps when you're on your jollies

Dominic Howard
29th October 2018
Image: Yuriy Kleymenov

The rapid expansion of ridiculously cheap flights within Europe and beyond means that flying is becoming more accessible to everyone, including us students. Whether you’re chilling on a beach in Lanzarote, exploring the Christmas market in Gdansk or checking out a few temples in Bangkok, you’ll more than likely want to snap some pretty photos to show off on your Instagram profile.

But because you probably swept up the first £20 return with Ryanair you saw whilst considerably deep in your overdraft, you probably didn’t have room to pack your camera because you didn’t want to pay baggage fees (unless I’m just completely projecting here).

[pullquote]take photos of famous landmarks from alternative and more subversive angles[/pullquote]

Thanks to how good the cameras are on your average smartphone, and the miracle of Instagram filters (or pretty much any form of social media), you really don’t need a digital camera to take fantastic shots. One caveat I feel I need to add though, is that you’re best off displaying travel photos online, because, whilst not bad, printing them off can diminish the quality a little.

So, firstly, a good way to go about photography is just to point and press, rather than obsessing over angles and lighting – again, we’ll assume they’re for social media, so filters and cropping will deal with most of the hassle. Whilst this is a pretty safe way of taking half-decent shots, there are other ways as well. For example, I sometimes like to include perspective in my photos and take them from a lower angle, or at least, make it look like it’s from a lower angle, so for that I’ll probably crouch down and point my phone upwards (the photo in Poland at night with the boat illustrates this, I hope).

Also, vary your photos - you might want to take photos with yourself in, not in, of a horizon, with perspective, and at a variety of different heights and angles. Another thing you might want to do is take photos of famous landmarks from alternative and more subversive angles than you typically see in photos. I find that being able to take good photos doesn’t really depend on the quality of your phone camera (although obviously it does need to be of reasonable quality), but how you put your own individual flare on it, so basically, if you want to take a fantastic photo, just go with whatever feels right!

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