Jack Hollingsworth, an award-winning commercial photographer, has published a beginner’s guide for using manual photography controls on your iPhone. The latest instalment demonstrates how you can make the most of your iPhone’s camera by using auto/manual focus.
One of the most important aspects of photography is focus. Normally users will be able to tolerate quite a bit of technical imperfections, except if your image is out of focus.
“Focus and Sharpness are somewhat relative terms and concepts. There are degrees of each. It all depends on the clarity of detail you want in your finished photograph. Some photographers will insist on nothing short of ‘tack sharpness’. Others will be somewhat forgiving with their focus points. Still others will prefer a more ‘artful’ approach and have intentional ‘out of focus’ elements in the frame. You, the photographer, will be the ultimate judge of focus and sharpness.”
When shooting an image with your iPhone camera, you want to draw the user’s attention to the primary subject in the image. To do this you must use some depth of field (DOF) techniques to account for the area of the image that stretches in front and behind the focus point (sometimes referred to as the “zone of sharpness”).
There are three ways to focus the iPhone’s camera: Autofocus, tap-to-focus, and manual focus. Autofocus works best when you are taking a landscape image in bright light. Tap-to-focus allows you to concentrate the focus point in a specific spot and lock the area of the image that is in focus (by long pressing).
Lastly manual focus, which can be accomplished by using an app like Camera+, is suited for close up shots that require fine tuning. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus showcase Apple’s best camera technology, both in hardware and software. Both devices include an 8-megapixel camera with digital image stabilization and optical image stabilization, respectively.
Whether you are an avid photographer or you just like to take photos, be sure to read Hollingsworth’s entire post and find out how you can use the most basic manual controls on your iPhone’s camera to take amazing photographs.