14 hidden iPhone digital camera ideas and tips: Immediately take higher pictures

Key Takeaways

  • Unlock hidden options within the iPhone digital camera app by tapping on the topic, together with adjusting publicity and locking focus whereas transferring the digital camera.
  • Swipe up or faucet the ^ icon within the digital camera app for superior controls like filters and side ratio changes.
  • Use the bodily quantity buttons or wired headphones as a shutter launch for higher grip and stability when taking pictures.


The iPhone is the digital camera behind trillions of photos taken yearly. However regardless of the iPhone’s recognition, the digital camera app isn’t at all times essentially the most intuitive to make use of. With a number of of its largest options hidden in contact gestures and buried contained in the settings, you’ll be able to snap pictures with an iPhone digital camera for years with out totally figuring out all of its hidden tips. By incorporating a couple of iPhone images ideas, you’ll be able to take higher pictures with the digital camera that’s already in your pocket.

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As knowledgeable photographer, a few of my favourite iPhone digital camera options are those that I also can discover on my mirrorless digital camera. Options from burst mode to RAW pictures increase the iPhone’s capabilities, however one is a hidden contact gesture and the opposite is buried within the Settings app. Whereas some options require a more recent or a Professional mannequin, a majority of iPhones can snap higher pictures with the following tips. (When you’ve got the iPhone 15, add six extra ideas by incorporating these new features on the latest models).


1 Unlock three hidden options simply by tapping on the topic

An iPhone camera screenshot

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Tapping on the display contained in the iPhone digital camera app focuses on the topic. However, there are two extra options you’ll be able to entry simply by tapping on the display. After tapping to focus, a yellow solar icon pops up subsequent to the yellow focus field. Faucet the solar and drag your finger up or right down to lighten or darken the picture. To maintain the main target and publicity locked on the topic whilst you transfer the digital camera round to search out one of the best angle, faucet and maintain on the topic as an alternative of 1 fast faucet. That lets you transfer your telephone round and get a greater composition whereas the topic stays in focus.

2 Swipe up or faucet the ^ for superior controls

An iPhone camera screenshot

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The digital camera app has a couple of controls proper on the prime of the display like turning the flash on and off. However, for those who swipe up whereas within the digital camera app or faucet the ^ icon, you’ll open a submenu of superior controls. Right here, you’ll be able to regulate filters, customise night time mode, or change the side ratio if, say you need that Instagram 1:1 sq.. This menu additionally opens extra choices than what’s out there from the primary display. For instance, you’ll be able to flip the flash to auto or off on the primary display. However, inside this superior menu, you too can power the flash to remain on reasonably than simply auto and off.

3 Use the amount buttons as a bodily shutter launch

A photo of the volume buttons on an iPhone

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Typically, reaching round to faucet the shutter button on the display creates a clumsy grip. However when the digital camera app is open, the bodily quantity buttons on the aspect of the telephone additionally function shutter buttons. Utilizing the bodily buttons as an alternative encourages a greater grip in your telephone, which may help scale back digital camera shake or just assist you get a greater angle on that selfie.

This trick truly additionally works with Apple’s wired headphones. Whereas Apple not consists of wired headphones while you purchase a brand new telephone, for those who nonetheless have a pair or if you buy a pair, you should utilize the amount buttons on the headphones to take a photograph. It is a nice trick if you wish to transfer farther away from the telephone to take a selfie or wish to take an extended publicity with out bumping the digital camera.

4 Swipe to allow action-packed bursts

An iPhone camera screenshot

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When photographing motion, burst mode takes a number of pictures in fast succession with the intention to improve the percentages of getting the picture at simply the best second. The iPhone has this mode too, but it surely’s a hidden gesture management. As an alternative of tapping on the shutter button on the backside of the display, faucet the shutter then slide your finger to the left and maintain. The iPhone will proceed snapping pictures till you launch your finger. (On some older fashions, burst mode is activated simply by holding down the shutter button. On newer fashions, this gesture begins a video reasonably than a photograph.)

One other different is to program the amount up button for bursts, whereas the amount down button stays relegated to single pictures. To do that, head into Settings -> Digital camera and toggle on the choice that claims “Use Quantity Up For Burst.”

Burst pictures will robotically be grouped within the digital camera roll. To decide on one of the best picture, faucet on the burst group, then faucet on “choose” on the backside of the display. Then, faucet on any favorites and hit performed. On the pop-up display, you’ll be able to select to maintain all the pictures (which is able to refill your telephone quicker) or to maintain solely the chosen favorites and delete the remaining.

5 Use Stay pictures to create an extended publicity (or perhaps a GIF)

Stay pictures are an iOS function that mixes a photograph and video collectively for a transferring picture. However, Stay pictures even have a couple of distinctive hidden options, together with the flexibility to take an extended publicity picture that may blur movement like visitors or the push of a waterfall. For this, you’ll want a tripod to carry the digital camera nonetheless. Then, be sure that the dwell picture icon is energetic (the concentric circles within the higher proper nook) and take a dwell picture. Subsequent, navigate to the picture within the Digital camera Roll. On the Stay drop-down menu, choose “lengthy publicity.” The iPhone will robotically flip that Stay picture into an extended publicity with movement blur. Discover there are different choices in that Stay drop-down menu too – you’ll be able to even create GIFs simply by deciding on the loop or bounce choices.

6 Flip your telephone the other way up for low angles

A low angle photo of a dog taken with an upside-down iPhone

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Taking pictures from a low angle makes buildings and folks look taller and might exaggerate reflections on water. However, for actually dramatic low-angle pictures, don’t simply maintain the telephone near the bottom. Maintain it near the bottom and the other way up. As a result of the digital camera array is on the prime of the telephone, holding the telephone the other way up will create much more dramatic low-angle pictures. The iPhone will robotically appropriate the orientation of the picture, so the picture will nonetheless seem right-side up.

7 For extra enhancing energy, activate Apple ProRAW

An iPhone displaying the Apple ProRAW settings

Some iPhone fashions supply Apple ProRAW, a file format that captures extra information with the intention to create higher outcomes when enhancing. In case you by no means edit your pictures, skip forward to the subsequent tip. However, for those who like to edit your photographs and have an iPhone 12 Professional, Professional Max, or newer check out ProRAW. To show this function on, head to Settings -> Digital camera -> Codecs and toggle on ProRAW or ProRAW & Decision Management. Then, within the digital camera app, faucet the ProRAW icon to show the uncooked format on and off. On ProRAW pictures, you’ll have extra flexibility in enhancing the colours, publicity, white stability, and extra.

8 Get in near robotically activate macro mode

iPhone-photography-tips-hillary-grigonis-9095

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When you’ve got an iPhone 13 Professional or a later Professional mannequin, chances are you’ll not even know you might have a macro digital camera proper in your pocket. Not like the array of lenses which are labeled contained in the digital camera app, the macro digital camera doesn’t have a spot on the lens slider. The truth is, the macro mode doesn’t have a button or setting in any respect. All you must do is get in near the topic and the iPhone will robotically change to macro mode. Macro is just out there from the .5x lens, however the iPhone robotically switches lenses while you get in shut. When macro mode is activated, you’ll see a yellow flower icon within the nook. In case you don’t wish to enter into macro mode, simply faucet the macro icon to revert again to regular mode.

9 Get artistic with pano mode

Pano mode iPhone

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You’ve in all probability noticed the Pano mode within the array of various modes within the digital camera app. However there’s so much that the pano mode can do past only a fundamental pano. For starters, the pano mode works vertically in addition to horizontally. However, as a result of the pano mode mixes a number of photographs collectively, you too can use it to clone individuals or objects with out Photoshop. Merely begin a Pano, cease transferring the digital camera after the particular person has appeared within the picture as soon as, have the particular person transfer to the subsequent a part of the pan that you simply haven’t photographed, after which proceed the pano. Repeat as many occasions as you wish to clone the particular person.

10 Alter the depth of the background blur in portrait mode

An iPhone camera screenshot

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When you’ve got a Professional mannequin iPhone, portrait mode provides background blur to make the topic stand out from any distractions. However, you’ll be able to add extra blur than the iPhone default. Or, if the perimeters of the particular person don’t look fairly proper, you’ll be able to scale back the depth of that blur. Inside portrait mode, faucet on the f icon within the nook. A slider will seem on the backside of the display – slide left to a decrease quantity like f1.4 for extra blur, slide proper to a better quantity like f8 for much less blur.

When you’ve got an iPhone 15 Professional or later, you’ll be able to even regulate what’s in focus after the picture has been taken, so long as you both use portrait mode or faucet to focus.

11 Add filters…earlier than you shoot

An iPhone camera screenshot

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Filters have been extremely standard for the reason that daybreak of Instagram – however do you know that you do not have to attend till after you’ve taken a photograph to use a filter? If you apply the filter earlier than you shoot, you’ll be able to see precisely how the filter will look and make any modifications earlier than you shoot the picture. That is particularly useful with the black-and-white filters – viewing the picture with out colours earlier than you are taking it might encourage you to regulate the composition.

12 Customise your colours and lenses contained in the Settings

Including filters earlier than you shoot is useful, however you’ll be able to truly customise the colours of each picture you snap robotically. Not like filters, you don’t have to show photographic types on and off every time you open the digital camera – when you set them up, these colours keep on a regular basis. Head into Settings -> Digital camera then Photographic Kinds. Swipe via the completely different choices, together with normal, vibrant, heat, and funky, after which choose your favourite.

Equally, you too can choose your favorite lens so that you simply don’t should swipe to pick out it every time you open the digital camera app. Head to Settings -> Digital camera -> Major Digital camera. Underneath default lens, choose the lens that you simply at all times wish to have energetic as quickly as you open the digital camera app.

An iPhone camera screenshot

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The iPhone has built-in instruments to assist maintain the digital camera straight or support in composition. The extent guides customers to carry the digital camera completely straight. The grid choice encourages use of the Rule of Thirds, which means that putting the topic of heart on an intersecting grid line can create a stronger picture. View Outdoors the Body turns the black border across the picture clear, so you’ll be able to see as you’re taking the picture if you’re lacking something outdoors the body. All three choices are positioned in Settings -> Digital camera underneath Composition.

14 Add digital camera options utilizing the Shortcuts app

There are a number of issues that your iPhone digital camera can do to hurry up the picture course of or enhancing course of. Head to the Shortcuts app, faucet on gallery, then scroll right down to the images part and faucet “see all.” Right here, you’ll see all of the various things that your iPhone digital camera can do for you – you simply should faucet the plus icon on the specified shortcut. Shortcuts vary from robotically eradicating the background from a photograph to changing a burst right into a GIF. However, you too can use Shortcuts to assist filter out outdated pictures that you simply not wish to unlock house in your telephone.

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