Top iPhone Camera Tips For Taking Better Pictures

One of the most used features on my iPhone is the camera. It’s very easy to use and sharing photos via email is a breeze. Lots of people hate on the iPhone’s camera, which in some cases their arguments have merit.

But on the whole, the iPhone camera does its job and does it well. I have noticed that the iPhone 3G camera takes better pictures than the original first gen. This could be just me, but I find pictures taken with the 3G more crisp and clear.

For starters, emailing pictures with Mail is dead simple. Also, for uploading there is Flickit which makes batch uploading to Flickr a breeze. Recently, Photocritic.org took the time to revisit the issue of the iPhone’s camera and its capabilities.

The iPhone camera has its limitations: no flash, no autofocus, no macro mode, 2 megapixels. Other manufacturers have phones that blow the iPhone’s camera out of the water. For me, having an “amazing” camera on my cellphone is not that important. If I really wanted to go out and take quality photos, that’s what my digital SLR is for!

What makes the iPhone’s camera so easy to use is its simplicity. The majority of the time, stunning photos are taken by people who have a keen eye for composition. Arm a professional with a disposable camera and you’ll realize that it’s not the camera that takes amazing photos!

Flickr user sionfullana has some impressive iPhone pictures:
ishot-44

Here are some of my personal tips that will help you take some better pictures with your iPhone camera:

1. Hold and let go of the shutter, instead of of pressing down: this technique will result in less blurry photos. Hold your finger over the shutter, frame your shot and then let go.

2. Lean against a solid object and hold your breath: this works well if you’re taking snaps in low lighting and night situations. If you don’t have something to lean on, stand still, bring your elbows to your sides, inhale to hold your breath, and take the shot. Hold still until you hear the shutter sound–you’ll be amazed at the difference.

3. Taking a self portrait? Use the shiny Apple logo on the back as a mirror to help you compose your picture!

4. Don’t have the patience to do the above? The following iPhone Apps can help you compensate for better photos:
Darkroom (free): indicates when your hand is stable before you take your pic.
ColorSplash ($1.99): this app will let you have some fun with your pictures, currently the top paid photography app.

5. The best advice I can give for taking better pics is what others will tell you over and over again: keep on taking pictures. The more you take, the better you will become as you’ll eventually get “the shot” when the opportunity appears.

If you take into consideration QIK for live streaming video, and the iPhone camera, you’re going to be more than prepared when you’re heading out and run into something that is “newsworthy”.

Don’t forget Tweetie and TwitterFon, two of the top iPhone Twitter apps. Geez, now you know why the iPhone never leaves my side. Have some picture-taking tips to share? I’d be happy to hear them in the comments! πŸ˜‰

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter, and @iPhoneinCanada, and on Google+.

  • Harry

    just wondering, is there a application or setting etc that I can get perhaps from cydia that would get rid of the faux shutter that seems to take For ever on camera.

  • Harry

    just wondering, is there a application or setting etc that I can get perhaps from cydia that would get rid of the faux shutter that seems to take For ever on camera.

  • Harry

    just wondering, is there a application or setting etc that I can get perhaps from cydia that would get rid of the faux shutter that seems to take For ever on camera.

  • Guest

    iPhone camera is only good for taking photos of stationary objects in excellent lighting conditions. Other than that, it is brutal. Everything that moves, no matter how slowly, is blurred.

    I can see it being a major update for the next gen because the new iPhoto supports geotagging. I take a lot of pics with my camera and if they do not have a new iPhone announced by the time the C905A comes out I am going back to a SE product. I came to iPhone from a K850i and I really miss that camera.

    I understand everyone has different needs, and I LOVE my iPhone, but for me a good camera is more important than a wicked browser, iPod capabilities and even the app store.

  • Michael B

    iPhone camera is only good for taking photos of stationary objects in excellent lighting conditions. Other than that, it is brutal. Everything that moves, no matter how slowly, is blurred.

    I can see it being a major update for the next gen because the new iPhoto supports geotagging. I take a lot of pics with my camera and if they do not have a new iPhone announced by the time the C905A comes out I am going back to a SE product. I came to iPhone from a K850i and I really miss that camera.

    I understand everyone has different needs, and I LOVE my iPhone, but for me a good camera is more important than a wicked browser, iPod capabilities and even the app store.

  • I dislike the iPhone camera. My 2MP camera on the SonyEricsson I’ve had (previous two actually) took better photos. The BB Curve 8330 I currently have (along with my iPhone) also takes better photos. I thought with today’s technology the iPhone might have a higher resolution and better optics. Guess it’s more like a pinhole camera huh?

    Then again it is nice to have a camera on the iPhone for those times I am not carrying my Canon EOS 450D or when I want to post a photo to twitpic of course. I do have Night camera loaded on my phone which helps with lowlight photos. Being able to utilize the accelerometer as a image stabilizer is pretty cool.

    Though sionfullana’s photos with her iPhone are pretty cool. If you put aside the quality of image. The creativity of the shot is good. that’s what its about through right? Who cares if you have a 24MP camera, its the composition of the shot that really matters πŸ™‚

  • I dislike the iPhone camera. My 2MP camera on the SonyEricsson I’ve had (previous two actually) took better photos. The BB Curve 8330 I currently have (along with my iPhone) also takes better photos. I thought with today’s technology the iPhone might have a higher resolution and better optics. Guess it’s more like a pinhole camera huh?

    Then again it is nice to have a camera on the iPhone for those times I am not carrying my Canon EOS 450D or when I want to post a photo to twitpic of course. I do have Night camera loaded on my phone which helps with lowlight photos. Being able to utilize the accelerometer as a image stabilizer is pretty cool.

    Though sionfullana’s photos with her iPhone are pretty cool. If you put aside the quality of image. The creativity of the shot is good. that’s what its about through right? Who cares if you have a 24MP camera, its the composition of the shot that really matters πŸ™‚

  • I dislike the iPhone camera. My 2MP camera on the SonyEricsson I’ve had (previous two actually) took better photos. The BB Curve 8330 I currently have (along with my iPhone) also takes better photos. I thought with today’s technology the iPhone might have a higher resolution and better optics. Guess it’s more like a pinhole camera huh?

    Then again it is nice to have a camera on the iPhone for those times I am not carrying my Canon EOS 450D or when I want to post a photo to twitpic of course. I do have Night camera loaded on my phone which helps with lowlight photos. Being able to utilize the accelerometer as a image stabilizer is pretty cool.

    Though sionfullana’s photos with her iPhone are pretty cool. If you put aside the quality of image. The creativity of the shot is good. that’s what its about through right? Who cares if you have a 24MP camera, its the composition of the shot that really matters πŸ™‚

  • Trent

    I use the Night Camera app for taking almost all my iPhone photos. It works similarly to Darkroom (I suspect, since I’ve never used Darkroom). As Tyler says, it uses the accelerometer in the iPhone to detect when your hand is steady, then takes the photo for you. Then it shows you a preview of your photo and asks if you want to keep it. It’s a little slow to take multiple photos (it seems to take a while saving the photos you want to keep) but I’ve never taken a blurry photo with it. I even use it in good lighting, just to make sure my photos are as clear as they can be.

  • Trent

    I use the Night Camera app for taking almost all my iPhone photos. It works similarly to Darkroom (I suspect, since I’ve never used Darkroom). As Tyler says, it uses the accelerometer in the iPhone to detect when your hand is steady, then takes the photo for you. Then it shows you a preview of your photo and asks if you want to keep it. It’s a little slow to take multiple photos (it seems to take a while saving the photos you want to keep) but I’ve never taken a blurry photo with it. I even use it in good lighting, just to make sure my photos are as clear as they can be.

  • Guest

    If ur downloading from cydia, I would recommend Snapture, Clear Cam and there’s a few more I cant remember. Im not sure if there gonna help but they do work better then the original camera!

  • Guest

    If ur downloading from cydia, I would recommend Snapture, Clear Cam and there’s a few more I cant remember. Im not sure if there gonna help but they do work better then the original camera!

  • Dusty

    If ur downloading from cydia, I would recommend Snapture, Clear Cam and there’s a few more I cant remember. Im not sure if there gonna help but they do work better then the original camera!

  • Guest

    Great post Gary!

    I’d recommend a few apps to try…
    Snapture
    Clear Cam
    Night Camera
    Videorecorder3G (iPhone 3G)
    They all seem to work better then the original camera. (Cydia/App store)

    I agree with all the above posts and how crappy the iPhone camera is! But im also like Gary where its not a big deal because if I wanna take pictures, ill use my digital camera and get the quality! Apple needs to improve the MP in there next release to match those awesome other camera’s out there. Will it happen? Doubt it but well wait and see. The app store apps. have made some nice features to help out Apple.

  • Guest

    Great post Gary!

    I’d recommend a few apps to try…
    Snapture
    Clear Cam
    Night Camera
    Videorecorder3G (iPhone 3G)
    They all seem to work better then the original camera. (Cydia/App store)

    I agree with all the above posts and how crappy the iPhone camera is! But im also like Gary where its not a big deal because if I wanna take pictures, ill use my digital camera and get the quality! Apple needs to improve the MP in there next release to match those awesome other camera’s out there. Will it happen? Doubt it but well wait and see. The app store apps. have made some nice features to help out Apple.

  • Dusty

    Great post Gary!

    I’d recommend a few apps to try…
    Snapture
    Clear Cam
    Night Camera
    Videorecorder3G (iPhone 3G)
    They all seem to work better then the original camera. (Cydia/App store)

    I agree with all the above posts and how crappy the iPhone camera is! But im also like Gary where its not a big deal because if I wanna take pictures, ill use my digital camera and get the quality! Apple needs to improve the MP in there next release to match those awesome other camera’s out there. Will it happen? Doubt it but well wait and see. The app store apps. have made some nice features to help out Apple.

  • John Piercy

    Im a relative newbie ,, when it coms to the Iphone , but NOT new to DSLR and cameras
    This picture WAS taken with a Iphone , no manipulation
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jcpiercy/3211114278/in/set-72157612833970920/
    Im a big of Flickit ,,and Mobile Fotos .. Night Camera is a must have .
    Also join the Taken With an Iphone Flickr Group
    http://www.flickr.com/groups/takenwithiphone/pool/

  • John Piercy

    Im a relative newbie ,, when it coms to the Iphone , but NOT new to DSLR and cameras
    This picture WAS taken with a Iphone , no manipulation
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jcpiercy/3211114278/in/set-72157612833970920/
    Im a big of Flickit ,,and Mobile Fotos .. Night Camera is a must have .
    Also join the Taken With an Iphone Flickr Group
    http://www.flickr.com/groups/takenwithiphone/pool/

  • John Piercy

    Im a relative newbie ,, when it coms to the Iphone , but NOT new to DSLR and cameras
    This picture WAS taken with a Iphone , no manipulation
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jcpiercy/3211114278/in/set-72157612833970920/
    Im a big of Flickit ,,and Mobile Fotos .. Night Camera is a must have .
    Also join the Taken With an Iphone Flickr Group
    http://www.flickr.com/groups/takenwithiphone/pool/

  • Guest

    Interested in some quality iPhone pictures? Check out the post in the forum.
    http://www.iphoneincanada.ca/forums/showthread.php?t=4779
    Leave some comments what u think about them! πŸ˜‰

  • Dusty

    Interested in some quality iPhone pictures? Check out the post in the forum.
    http://www.iphoneincanada.ca/forums/showthread.php?t=4779
    Leave some comments what u think about them! πŸ˜‰

  • dashparr

    I also use Night Camera, it’s very good.

  • dashparr

    I also use Night Camera, it’s very good.

  • Andrew

    I currently use coloursplash…sorry colorsplash lol It’s actually quite a fantastic application and would highly recommend it. It won’t help you take better pictures but it’s almost like having photoshop on your iphone. I have only really used it to make pictures where everything is black except for certain colours. Really fun and really easy to use.
    Another program…if you use cydia that Isn’t for photos but actually for videos is: Cycorder. A fantastic program for recording video and to my suprise they turn out quite amazing! I haven’t figured out how to get the vids off yet but I imagine you can ssh into the iphone and find it if you are into that jailbreaking business…then again to have the app you’d have to be haha.
    Anyways, Thats my two bits. Thanks for the great tips!

  • Andrew

    I currently use coloursplash…sorry colorsplash lol It’s actually quite a fantastic application and would highly recommend it. It won’t help you take better pictures but it’s almost like having photoshop on your iphone. I have only really used it to make pictures where everything is black except for certain colours. Really fun and really easy to use.
    Another program…if you use cydia that Isn’t for photos but actually for videos is: Cycorder. A fantastic program for recording video and to my suprise they turn out quite amazing! I haven’t figured out how to get the vids off yet but I imagine you can ssh into the iphone and find it if you are into that jailbreaking business…then again to have the app you’d have to be haha.
    Anyways, Thats my two bits. Thanks for the great tips!

  • Jorelle

    I would love to see a tutorial post on how to get Cycorder videos off.

  • Jorelle

    I would love to see a tutorial post on how to get Cycorder videos off.

  • Andrew

    I just did a quick google test to try getting cycorder videos off and its quite simple actually. You need to have openssh installed on your jailbroken iphone (can be found through cydia). Using a ftp program…i used Cyberduck on my mac you can easily connect to your iphone (just google openssh to iphone, i watched a cheesy but useful youtube video on it). Then browse here:
    SSH to: /private/var/mobile/Media/Videos
    The video files you have made can be found there and downloaded off your phone.

  • Andrew

    I just did a quick google test to try getting cycorder videos off and its quite simple actually. You need to have openssh installed on your jailbroken iphone (can be found through cydia). Using a ftp program…i used Cyberduck on my mac you can easily connect to your iphone (just google openssh to iphone, i watched a cheesy but useful youtube video on it). Then browse here:
    SSH to: /private/var/mobile/Media/Videos
    The video files you have made can be found there and downloaded off your phone.

  • these are great tips, thanks for sharing

  • these are great tips, thanks for sharing

  • these are great tips, thanks for sharing

  • natali

    im very new to using the iphone. iv relised that it has a camera but no video camera..is there an application so i can record videos? please help

  • natali

    im very new to using the iphone. iv relised that it has a camera but no video camera..is there an application so i can record videos? please help