Se­cret to the per­fect snap

Turn your fol­low­ers envy-green

The Western Star - - GAMES & GADGETS -

ENVY. It can be a pow­er­ful emo­tion, fu­elled well by pho­tos of oth­ers en­joy­ing their sum­mer hol­i­days.

So what’s the se­cret of cre­at­ing great pictures with a good phone?

Aus­tralian pho­tog­ra­pher and In­sta­gram­mer Samah El Ali shares some of her best tips.

1. Shoot dur­ing “magic hour” for even bet­ter re­sults

Magic hour is a term used by pho­tog­ra­phers for im­ages cap­tured at sun­rise (and just af­ter) or at sun­set (and just be­fore).

The golden glow cre­ates a stun­ning mood and will turn any lo­ca­tion into a gor­geous vis­ual.

2. Man­u­ally fo­cus and ex­pose

Man­u­ally fo­cus­ing/ex­pos­ing gives you full creative con­trol and will al­low you to achieve more de­sir­able re­sults to suit your aes­thetic.

Tap­ping on your screen, on or close to the sun, will re­sult in a per­fectly round sun. If you feel your scene is un­der­ex­posed (too dark), you can tap and hold, then scroll up/ down to ad­just the ex­po­sure.

3. Ex­per­i­ment with long ex­po­sures

Long ex­po­sures are a great way to turn an or­di­nary scene into a moody cap­ture. SlowShut­ter is a user-friendly app with var­i­ous set­tings that al­low you to achieve dif­fer­ent re­sults. There are other apps to do this also.

To achieve a long ex­po­sure, you will need a tri­pod, but if you can lean your phone on a rock in a low-wind area, it could work too.

En­sure Cap­ture Mode in the set­tings is set to Mo­tion Blur.

Ex­per­i­ment with the blur strength un­til you’re sat­is­fied with the re­sult – a good start­ing point is to set be­tween mid­dle and high.

4. Take your phone for a dip!

Whether you en­joy a sum­mer day by the beach or in a pool, or you hap­pen to come across a deep pud­dle, un­der­wa­ter or over/un­der shots are fun to cap­ture and al­low you to cre­ate and share fresh per­spec­tives.

5. 2x op­ti­cal zoom

Ever been dis­ap­pointed when you re­view a photo you took from a dis­tance and notice you’ve zoomed in far too much and it’s pix­e­lated or blurry?

If like my iPhone XS Max, your phone has a dual lens, take con­trol of your zoom by us­ing 2x op­ti­cal zoom.

6. Rainy day? No wor­ries!

Dur­ing sum­mer, storms can be ex­pected, but it doesn’t mean fewer op­por­tu­ni­ties to cre­ate or cap­ture mem­o­rable mo­ments.

Look for pud­dles where you can com­pose cool re­flec­tion shots.

It is best to turn your phone up­side down so the cam­era is clos­est to the wa­ter and al­most per­fect sym­me­try can be achieved.

Pho­tos: Samah El Ali

ICONIC BEACH: Bondi Beach, 6.56am, iPhone XS Max, na­tive cam­era.

MAGIC HOUR: Bronte Rock Pool, 5.42am, iPhone XS Max, na­tive cam­era.

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