Just Owning A Smartphone? A Guide On How To Create Great Pictures With A Smartphone - No Excuses For Bad Or Single Smartphone Pictures Anymore!

in Photography Loverslast month (edited)

The Smartphone Dilemma - Or Not?

If you are like me, just owning a smartphone for taking pictures, you probably have thought to yourself that you are not good enough to create beautiful pictures.

NOT TRUE!

We tend to think that one has to be a super professional photographer to take nice shots. And whilst it is true that with a certain equipment comes a certain knowledge and of course a different quality, in the 21st century you don't have to own the most expensive equipment in order to become a good photographer.

Why and how?

Well, big companies like Leica are teaming up with smartphone producers. Those little things became damn good computers throughout the last years and with that comes a rapid development of the build in cameras.

Not only do they have a better software running but also the hardware is improving.


I am shooting with a Huawei P30 Pro.

It has a build in Leica Quad Camera, meaning 4 lenses for taking awesome pictures.

The main camera has a sensor with 40 megapixels, which Huawei has given the addition "Super Spectrum".

Super spectrum, because Huawei replaces the color green with yellow in the classic red-green-blue matrix. And this color has a wider spectrum and higher transmittance, which means that more light falls on the sensor.

And more light for the sensors equals better pictures.

It has a Periscope zoom lens with 8 megapixels, 3.4 mm aperture and 5x optical zoom and a Focal length of 125 millimeters.

Also it has an Ultra wide angle camera with an f / 2.2 aperture

In addition to these three cameras, the P30 Pro also has a ToF - Time of Flight - camera. This enables the smartphone to recognize distances and objects much better.


But how do I create nice pictures with my smartphone when there is bad lighting and I don't own a Huawei?


The answer is Filter and Edit! Simple as this.

That is what I do too. Because I can and every or at least most smartphones nowadays have this option, so you can too.

Also I use the filters that are given in my phone. Once applied you can play around with them as well.


Here are some examples


On a walk I discovered a plant that looked appealing to me. It was a cloudy day and I was walking in a forest at 1300. So not the best requirements a Pro would say.

I still took pictures, knowing that I can enhance them and make them look good without giving away of the motives personality.


This was the raw picture, so to say. The colors didn't came out as great and due to the bad lighting there was some depths missing in the picture.

It is a macro shot off the plants leaf that I took moving my phone close to the leaf. No picture in this post is cropped.



My first step was to open the picture and then the "EDIT" menu.

You can usually find it when opening a picture in your phones gallery.

What I did then was playing around with the given parameters.

Somewhere in the menu it says "ADJUST" and when opening that you find choices like
"CONTRAST / SHARPNESS / SHADOWS" and so on.

Just play with them.

Explore, move the bars back and forth, vary with "HIGHLIGHTS", "SATURATION" and everything else.

Soon you will find out that the pictures get a different look, that you can enhance them and make them look better and even professional.

See how the leaf became more vibrant and even more depth?

That's what happens when you play around a little bit.



To even give them an artistic appearance you can also add a "FILTER".

Again, all smartphones offer that option, you just have to pick and choose.

I choose "Black & White" in this case.

Though we can argue about motives per se, adding a filter can make any picture look different and sometimes better.



Let's stick with the Black and White theme.


Whatever picture you choose, you can apply a "FILTER".

But it doesn't have to end with simply applying it to the photo.

Play around with the "Filter".

Below is the plant whose leaf you saw above by the way.
I liked the shape of it, that's why it became my motive.

As you can see, you can have a SINGLE MOTIVE AND TAKE MORE THAN ONE PICTURE WITH IT.

All pictures in this post are made out of one plant!, so please, you can also offer more than one picture in a post of yours!




So after you applied the filter you can either move the filters bar back and forth, to see how it changes the appearance of the picture, or you do what I did.

I applied the "B&W Filter" and switched to my "ADJUST"menu. The one we were talking about above.

Playing around with "Shadows" and "Highlights" my already black and white picture got a different appearance.



That is something you can do with any Filter.

Below more examples of how adjusting "BRIGHTNESS" or "CONTRAST" can change a picture.

It can also help getting the focus more visible.



The focus was on the leafs, not the flower.

Adjusting "SHADOW" and "HIGHLIGHT" resulted in the leafs getting the right attention.



Last but not least a little bit about perspective and macro.

When you have a smartphone you have the advantage of getting closer to objects. You should be able to detect wether your camera is getting a certain focus point sharp or not.

Move your smartphone up and down and give the focus time to adjust on it's own. Most smartphones offer certain options build in already like "VIDEO", "NIGHT", "PHOTO", "MACRO", "PANORAMA" etc.

Figure out what options you have in your phone and play with them.



Even when you just use the regular "PHOTO" mode in your smartphone you can adjust angles. A good picture often lives from different perspectives.

Hold your phone in different positions to capture different angles.



When you wanna do a "MACRO" or "CLOSE UP" move the phones camera closer to the object.

Depending on your phone you will have different focus points. Not all of them are able to get a focus that close.

Just find the spot where your camera sets a picture sharp and crop them later when needed.

It might give you a macro like picture, depending on the phones picture quality.

The Huawei offers a decent macro option and without cropping you can even see the small threads that surround the flower bud.



Final Conclusion


No need to have a super expensive camera, not even the top notch smartphone and no need to be a Pro.

  • With a little bit of editing within your phone you can enhance any picture.

  • With a little bit of experimentation you can find new angles and perspectives.

  • With a little bit of love and passion you can take pictures people will be happy to take a look at.

  • With a little bit of effort you can even take more than 1 picture of a certain object or situation.


As always comments are welcome, even suggestions or questions :)



©bulldog-joy


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Great info, I had no idea that phones were getting that many options. I guess I should play in the menu's more!

Lol, says the one owning drones and driving an electric 😄 . Meanwhile all smartphones have decent features, pricy or not. Glad I could shine a little light on it lol. 🤗

Right? For the last year, I've just used the phone for quick snaps, and always just reach for the big camera for anything serious. Amazing all they've put into these photo apps in the last year or two. Mine Pixel doesn't have all the fancy features yours does, but does have some post shot editing for warm, cool, dynamic.

Ohhh really? No adjusting brightness and stuff somewhere in the phones gallery? Oh well, now I raised expectations. I should edit the post too "most of the smartphones" lol.

I have a Pixel 5. Sounds pretty limited compared to your Huawei. In the camera, I can adjust from normal view down to .6x or up to 2x (or pinch and zoom), also has a really good "night mode", and panorama, photo sphere, and motion photos mode. Only 12.2MP. Your 40 MP resolution is like my "Pro" Sony A9RIV camera (Just not the optical zoom capability)!

That high resolution is awesome for being able to crop and still have a good quality photo!

In the post shot photo app, I have options to "Enhance" (uses google photos), Dynamic, Warm, and Cool, and to crop. That's about it!

If I'm going to do any post editing, I'll usually drop it into photoshop or use the various Topaz tools (De-noise, Sharpen, and Gigapixel are awesome!) I've used them a lot for special projects.

Whaaaat? Google sucks 😄, how can they go cheap like that lol. And then they are complaining about the Chinese lol.

Editing in photoshop and other tools makes sense then. I am glad that the Huawei is having all those features included since I have no clue about photoshop or gimp and stuff 😂.

It does take awesome pics for a smart and since it is already "older" it shouldn't be that pricy anymore. I just know that the next generations of the Huawei got blocked for Android apps and stuff but I got the last one were all the apps are still running on.

Just dropped it several times and now I'm having the sider-app on my screen 😂. I hope it lasts a little longer lol.

Awesome, I'll give it a try, you know, sometimes we took too many pictures and just too lazy to edit those pictures. Thanks for this helpful post.

Editing doesn't always have to take long. Once you figure it out it goes fast. It's more the amount of pics that is time consuming. But investing a bit of time in some editing is worth more than uploading crappy pics. If I can do it, more can lol.

Take times :D yea, if you can do it, I can do it too LOL

Great tips and advice to encourage folks to utilize whatever they have to work with more effectively. Your color edits are really good. I am glad you are sharing methods to help increase the quality of the other photographers in the community! Thank You! =)

Thanks, appreciate you saying this 😊 .

I hope some will take a look at it, so every community can benefit from improved pictures and people see that you don't have to be a studied photographer to share good photos.

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A brilliant post, dear @bulldog-joy! Must say I am in love with my Huawei P9 mostly because of Leica, but macro pictures are my weak side. The telephone itself started playing tricks (the battery problem) which makes my upset. Will have to buy a new one when at home.

Yah after a while they give up on us. That's how the markets work, produce stuff that doesn't last long so you have to buy a new ones lol.

Your pictures are improving a lot I have the feeling so keep up :).

Hello Dear, this is really helpful post for mobile phone users. You are really a good content creator.. :)
Keep hiving... :)

Thanks, I just figured that not all the smartphones have those features included, but playing around with what one is having inside the phone can still enhance the one or other picture.

And other than that there are apps out there or stuff like photoshop or gimp, even though I would be screwed if I had to use those. But there are tools out there that makes it easy to do a little bit with a picture these days.

Even for laypeople like me lol.

Yes, I agree with you. It can be fun, if we can use our resources what we already have rather be hopeless.. :)

Pictures are gorgeous, especially I love how you have managed to take details of the flowers. I tried but still didn't achieve my desired goal. Love the monochrome vibes as well...

Try and error, that's the story of my life and pictures 😂. I have to say that things became easier with the Huawei. It's a great phone for taking pictures, the best I owned so far.

Casi todas las personas en estos tiempos cuentan con un teléfono inteligente, no específicamente de ultima generación, pero también es cierto que no todas saben sacarle provecho a estos teléfonos, el querer crecer en hive nos empuja la curiosidad de saber como funcionan las herramientas que tenemos, y resulta que esto puede tener un buen resultado, gracias por tu posts!

Gracias por su respuesta 😊 !

Pude entender la mayor parte de lo que escribiste sin un traductor, solo respondí que necesito Google ahora 😄 .

Me alegra que algunos estén interesados ​​en mis publicaciones. Me tomó algún tiempo comenzar a usar las funciones de mi teléfono. Debemos aprovechar lo que tenemos.

Para mí valió la pena jugar con las funciones de mi teléfono y estoy feliz si más tendrán los mismos resultados al usar herramientas simples.

I have the exact same Phone as you, and I love how awsome pictures it takes.. BUT... I still have lots to learn as I am still struggling with the very close ups 😜 lol
Great post and information that sure can help many.
Loved all your pictures and nr 2 and last one was my favorite.
Thank you for sharing and have a fantastic evening. Cheers 🥰

For close ups I recommend you open the Camera, then move to "MORE" and use "SUPER MACRO". Works miracles 😉.

Let me know if you need some more tips and tricks or how it worked out 🙂.

Tack för att du läste mitt inlägg. Ha en god natt 🤗.