Your hunting season has started. Are you ready to capture the adventure of your hunt through better imagery? If you're looking to photograph your entire hunt and get the most out of your smartphone camera, this is for you. Here are some simple, yet helpful tips to taking better images in-the-field with your phone.
This seems obvious, but it’s amazing how something so simple is often overlooked. When was the last time you cleaned the lens on your phone? Our phones spend so much time in our pockets gathering dust, oils, and dirt. It’s gross to think we put them up to our face to talk with let alone snap an image. A quick wipe with a soft Microfiber Lens Cloth can help bring a crisp-clean-look back to your imagery.
You’re thinking, “What’s the difference?” Images are visual ideas that you first create in your mind, it’s the thought “that would make a good photo”. You don’t need a fancy camera and lens to do this. Don’t be idle because it’s easy to pull your phone out and snap away. Take your time and put some thought into your set-up and create an image you’re proud to show. You will see a drastic improvement in your pictures, making them worthy of sharing.
Crooked horizon lines are a common mistake and easy to avoid or correct with smartphones. Once again, it seems like a no-brainer, but how often has someone shown you an image with a sloping or crooked backdrop? Imagine the famous sunset photos showing the sun setting into a crooked ocean.
The horizon line is a big deal in landscape photography. The landscape is going to tell the visual story of where you were during your time in the field. If there isn’t a true horizon line in your image setup, focus on where it would be running through the frame. That will determine if the finished photograph is going to look straight.
The rule-of-thirds is the first composition lesson learned by beginning photographers. If you don’t know what it is, it’s simple. When you hold your phone up to take an image--imagine sectioning it into thirds, both vertical and horizontal, so there are nine equal parts and four intersection points.
Following the rule-of-thirds places your subject or points of interest at the intersections of the nine lines. Doing so adds more professionalism and visual appeal to your image. If you want a boring photo, stick with the old subject-in-the-middle, if you want dynamic images, follow the rule-of-thirds.
This is such an important part of photography. The sun in going to be our main source of light. Mornings and evenings will provide the most dramatic and appealing light. We still need to be in the proper location to create optimal imagery. Having the sun behind you while it's low on the horizon is a good place to start.
Watch your body's shadow while you're capturing images, so it doesn't become part of your photo. Experiment with different light and angles so you know what works and what doesn't. Trial-and-error is still the best way to learn.
One of the most appealing aspects of smartphones are the apps. Your phone is a handheld computer capable of adjusting your images. Photo editing apps, like Snapseed are easy to use and can adjust your exposure, enhance colors and even take out unwanted elements, like power lines. Small edits can take your images to the next level.
Quality photography isn’t something that’s easily learned. It takes time, practice, and attention to detail. Not every picture you take is going to be featured in the next KUIU Newsletter, but if you follow these basic steps, you'll be heading in the right direction. Take your time, plan your shot, learn to edit, and you'll have more to remember from your hunt—other than the good ‘ol “Grip and Grin”.
If you have followed KUIU for any length of time, you will be familiar with the amazing work of photographer Paul Bride. He has been the driving force behind the authentic imagery we use to convey the performance and inspiration linked with our brand. Based out of Squamish, British Columbia, Canada. Bride is one of the most accomplished outdoor, travel, and adventure photographers of our time.
Bride has shot more than 60 magazine covers, including, Alpinist, Pacific Yachting, Gripped, Climbing, Rock & Ice, Climb, Geographic Adventure, Powder, Outside Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Photo Technique, Photo Life, Photo News, and Wild Sheep. His resume’ lists work for the top brands in the outdoor industry: KUIU, Arcteryx, Patagonia, Red Bull, Lowepro, Black Diamond, Five Ten, Julbo, Tyax Heli Skiing, and MSR.
Too modest to ever tell anyone, Bride’s work has garnered some of the top photography awards currently given:
With a career spanning nearly two decades and six continents, Bride has the willingness to go on the most difficult and dangerous adventures, and the talent to capture these pursuits on camera. He is the consummate professional, as tough as they come, and talented beyond words.