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  • Writer's pictureHolly Catherall

7 Easy Tips for Taking Better Interior Photos with your Smartphone

Now, I will forever champion using a professional photographer to take your interior shots, whatever the reason. It really is a no-brainer. Still, there's no gatekeeping here when it comes to taking your own interior photos. No photography knowledge required, use these tips and tricks to drastically improve your interior photo game. And with just your smartphone no less!

1. Set the scene

This crucial first step applies to any type of interior photography. Whether you're styling for a magazine shoot or simply creating content for your socials, make sure the room or area is exactly how you want it before you even touch your phone. Be mindful of anything the camera will pick up, including clutter and smudges or dirt. You can read some more tips on how to prep your home here!

open iphone camera app taking photo of a bookshelf

2. Clean your lens

Seems obvious but you might forget that in the busyness of life, our smartphones get subjected to a lot of dirt! Greasy fingers or makeup smudges can blur images and mean you won't get the quality you're after. Get a microfibre cloth and gently wipe away any smudges or grit and you're good to go.

3. Think Straight Lines

Straight lines equal better composition and a more naturalistic feel. You get a much cleaner - literally straight-edged - look which is much more visually appealing. Straightening up your vertical and horizontal lines on your smartphone has never been easier. Simply turn on the grid function and match up the grid to whatever the subject of your image is. Of course, this is a general rule and you can play around with more artistic angles. If you want to be more creative, try keeping one set of lines straight, say the horizontals, and play around with the verticals!

4. Play with levels

Keeping your lines straight doesn't mean you need to shoot at eye level. Play around with the height of your phone. Think about the subject matter and what level would suit the object or scene. For example, it tends to be more visually appealing for kitchens to be shot a little higher than the usual waist height, so you can see over the countertops.

5. Move closer, don't zoom

The trick with smartphones is to get the best possible quality available to the model. With this in mind, rather than zooming in to meet the subject, physically walk towards it and position yourself closer to the subject. This will ensure there is no loss of quality and that every pixel available is in sharp focus.

6. Use natural light

If you want your images to be balanced and true to colour without the need for editing, it's best to shoot with artificial lights off, relying solely on natural light. Do this and you won't get the clashing of the blue natural light and yellow artificial light, which will distort colour.

open iphone camera app taking photo and changing exposure

If you're going for a moody atmospheric shot, or you're highlighting feature lighting, then, by all means, go crazy with the artificial light! To get the best artificial light shots, blocking out natural light is the way to go.

7. Focus & Exposure lock

Once you've played around with all of the above, you need to think about exposure. Exposure simply refers to the amount of light hitting your camera's sensor. On your camera app, tap the screen and hold the point where the subject is and where you want the focus to be. This should enable autoexposure and autofocus lock. Here, you can adjust the exposure with the slider (this is the case with iPhone, android phones may differ!).

With smartphone photography, it's usually better to slightly underexpose (go darker) as it's easier to lighten shadows with simple edits than it is the pull back information lost in blown-out highlights. Also, It might be worth considering using a monopod or tripod to keep your phone steady and ensure your photos are crisp and delicious.



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