You don’t have to be a photographer to take good photos. But you do need common sense. In this age of iPhones and S4s and Notes and whatever other smartphone you have, everyone is using their phone to take photos or videos of everything.
But 95% of you are doing it wrong.
When taking a photo you should always hold the camera side-to-side, horizontal, in landscape mode (that should cover all the major terms).
In fact, if you do a google image search for “take iPhone photo,” almost every single picture that pops up shows people holding it sideways, like above, the right way. Here, let me google that for you.
Yes I realize in the heat of the moment you may not have your wits about you and you just pull out the phone and snap that quick pic of the bank robber, or the tornado, or your kid taking his first steps. But when you are consciously composing a shot, do the world a favor, and hold your phone the right way to take a photo with a normal landscape aspect ratio.
If you ever want to make a print, and that’s more possible these days with camera phones having such high megapixel counts, you’ll have a much better outcome if your photo was taken side-to-side. Because, let’s think about printed photos – aren’t they always wider than they are tall? Portrait type shots are made more tall than wide by the photographer literally turning the camera on its side to turn the photo on its side. And this is only done in certain circumstances. But guess what, when they print, they print sideways – you turn the picture to put it in a frame. Photos are in landscape by default. Turn your phone.
You know what’s worse? When people take video with their phone in the up & down position. Then do something like upload it to youtube and when you watch it all you see is a skinny little strip of video down the middle surrounded by giant black boxes. This isn’t because you took it on your phone – it’s because you did it wrong. Turn the phone sideways. Even our good friend Tom Bergeron on AFV tells you to do this if you want to submit a video!
So. Next time you go to snap a pic or take a video make sure you’re doing it right.