365 project Part 2: Phone camera settings
Take smartphone photography to the next level with Jo Bradford as she shows you how to use the camera’s manual settings, unleashing its potential
There are so many camera apps on the market that knowing where to turn can be overwhelming. The first I would recommend if you are a iPhone user is ProCamera. It’s worth investing in alone for its ability to save your photos as uncompressed raw and TIFF files, enabling you to make bigger, better photos for printing and sharing. You can make individual adjustments to your ISO, shutter speed and white balance.
Another great tool in ProCamera’s armoury is the ability to set the focal and exposure points in the same place or to pinch them apart, so that you can set a focal point in one place and expose for the brightest area separately, then lock the points. It is all done easily with a tap-and-press manoeuvre. ProCamera has a nifty stabilisation option for those needing some support for handshake: it will wait for the phone to be still before closing the shutter. You can adjust the required stability with a slider.
If you have an Android phone, you can easily control the latest Android devices without the need to purchase bolt-on apps. Instead, you can get great control with the camera’s built-in Pro Mode. This mode is accessible in the camera settings: swipe down on the = symbol found in the upper area of the main camera screen to reveal the settings menu. Most of the latest generation of Androids have the ability to shoot uncompressed raw and TIFF files, an option that can be selected in the device’s Pro Mode settings.
Once Pro Mode is engaged, you can make a range of adjustments: there are individual sliders to make adjustments to your ISO, shutter speed, focal range and exposure compensation, amongst other things. Tap the Auto button at the top of each slider on and off to work in a Shutter Priority mode. Generally it is only possible to make adjustments in up to a maximum of three settings at a time, so play around to see which ones give you the best control for your intended use.
Let’s take a closer look at making the most of individual settings…