Smartphone photography has made the art of capturing moments accessible to everyone. It is great to use your smartphone to snap a picture when something new or exciting happens in your business. Or you can use it to simply capture who you’ve worked with that day for social media content and engagement with your customers.

For social media, it usually doesn’t matter which way you are holding your phone when taking a picture. There are some exceptions though, like Stories.


For websites always hold the smartphone on the side in landscape mode. Only use photos taken with your phone on websites if it is necessary and temporary. I recommend high-quality images on websites.

Here are a few tricks on how you can level up your Smartphone photography skills:

1. Portrait mode/Live focus

On the newer smartphones, when you go to your camera, you can change to different modes. The portrait mode (Live focus on Android) lets you take a clear picture of yourself or an animal and make the background blurry. Basically what you are photographing will be the focus in this setting.

2. Light

Light is incredibly important in smartphone photography. So make sure you or your client is well lit.
Indoors in a salon, make sure the curtains are open so there is enough light in the room. Face the light or let the dog face the light. Make sure you are not covering the light source (aka the window) when taking the photo.

3. Background

Choose a nice background, not paint missing from the wall or a messy room. Even when it is blurry in portrait mode it should be nice, as it is part of the composition of your photo.

4. Focus

When you are about to take a picture just tap the screen where you want your image to be in focus. Easy as that! If you want less or more light on it then tap and hold with iPhone and usually just tap with Android device. A little sun or a toggle bar will come up. Move that and you see the light changing. When you are happy with it then let it go and take the photo.

5. Continuous shot

If you are photographing pets, they may not the most cooperative photo subjects… So get their attention with treats or a squeaky toy just above the phone. This way hopefully they will be still until you press the button to take a picture.
You can tap and hold the shutter button with Android, it will then take a continuous shot. For iPhone, you need to turn on the Live mode and quickly press the shutter button.

Then go to see the photo and go to Edit or the “pencil” and you can select the best images from the series of pictures you took.

If you are more of a visual person then please see my video about it here:

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at petra@petra-brandphotography.co.uk


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