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iPhone 6s Photography

Lesson 3 of 11

Light, Composition, and Camera Angle for Your iPhone

Julia Kelleher

iPhone 6s Photography

Julia Kelleher

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Lesson Info

3. Light, Composition, and Camera Angle for Your iPhone

Lesson Info

Light, Composition, and Camera Angle for Your iPhone

Speaking of light, let's talk about light for your iphone one of the big questions I get all the time it should I use flash or no flash? That is the question I always tell people to err on the side of no flash now when you're in the dark in the middle of the night, there's nothing there's, no other light source you have to use your flash sometimes, especially for those wanted snapshots, but for the most part, if you can avoid using flash even if you're in a restaurant where it's really dark and used the candles or take someone else's, iphone and light the subject from a just as long as the light isn't directly overhead and flashing right at the subject. It's going to look so much better, so oftentimes when my husband and I are out to dinner and we want to take a picture, another couple war with, I will take the shot and he'll take his phone and light them from the side. So just as long as the light isn't coming directly from the camera, the image will look that much better. Okay, so to...

get your flash on, you want tio go up to the like lightning bolt icon on your phone, and you can either make it auto. Or s o the camera will evaluate when it needs flash and when it doesn't I always recommend don't do that at all because then it'll flash and situations where you don't necessarily want it tio leave it off kind of as a default mode and then if you really feel like you need a flash go ahead and turn it on for that specific shot leaving it on auto and letting the camera do that work probably won't get the most stellar results all the time so I always keep mine off and when I really do need flash that's when I go inside and actually manually turn it on ok but no white is light and it's important to have good light in your images and the iphone is still definitely definitely a snapshot camera it's not like a professional dslr that can really has a sensor that can really hone in on very little light this camera needs good light ok there's a difference though between quantity of light and quality no granted the iphone six does need a lot of light but you also need quality light to get good images so if you're shooting outside and bright sun yeah you're going to capture that moment but if you really want to improve the quality of your images you want to find better light and sometimes doing that is the simple is looking at the shadows and seeing how strong or harsh they are you want soft, pretty shadows and we mean when we go outside we're going to show you this so you want directional light you want soft light and you want quality light and yes, quantity it does matter on the iphone you need a lot of good light to get good sharp images. Your phone does have those limitations and megapixels have nothing to do with it. Sometimes I think megapixels are what the camera industries marketing marketing platform is. They have kind of jumped on this bandwagon that more megapixels means higher quality it's not as though the case no granted with the iphone success yes, upgrading to a twelve megapixel camera is going to improve your image quality, but the center has to be good, teo and oftentimes on these professional cameras we love all that the censor us pros the sensor has to be high quality, and with that being said, it will allow the camera to capture light or less light I should say okay, so natural light versus indoor flash versus no flash it's important to recognize good light and so you're going to take a picture of my son here, but I wanted to point out he's inside here on this image in his little red t shirt this was mother's day a couple of years ago and I put him next to the window it's nice soft pleasing light there's a couple of harsh sunlight flares behind him but for the most part his faces in that soft light well on the image on the right we just stuck him in a big old my husband's beer brewing pot we stuck him in the pot and he was in the garage and the light was just awful in the garage. It wasn't very pretty and you could see there's like harsh shadows on his face. It looks dark on dh it's just overall, not a great lighting situation, so watch for that oftentimes by putting a child next to a window where there's indirect sunlight can be the best situation for a portrait, whether it be a kid or an adult or family and friends look for that light in the eyes if you see that sparkle what we call a catch light, you know your lights probably pretty good, okay, that makes the eyes come alive, so I always look for light in the eyes and that helps me determine if I'm taking a good portrait or not. Now when you're outside shooting landscapes or food or things like that, you're gonna want to look for light a little bit differently, but we'll talk about that when we get into into those segments, what about color? You could improve the quality of your images drastically just by learning a little bit about color and this is the color wheel and I'm sure those of you who remember this from like second and third grade when I first started learning color it was overwhelming and like color theory and how colors work together but if you are very conscientious about this and just learn a few basic skills about color it's going to improve your image is dramatically even when it just comes down to what your family and friends air wearing for a snapshot at the family christmas outing or whatever so what I want you to do is kind of do this little exercise this is hugely important because it helps you understand that your brain sees color in a specific way so I want you to dio is stare at the dot in the red triangle for twenty seconds ok so just stare at it ok so just look at that dot twenty more twenty seconds we're almost there we're down to ten just keeps staring at steve sterrett that black dot with the red triangle keep looking ok five four three two one now look at the other black dot what you see isn't that just so bizarre basically if you didn't write your brain wants to see another triangle in like a green cyan color in other words it wants to see red complimentary color in that space your brain I want that harmonious color it's wired that way and that's my color theory has such an impact in any art piece that we see and why artist study color so much because it in parts of feeling into the art piece whether it be a simple snapshot or a sculpture, a painting or whatever so color harmony is so important in your images and if you start looking for it, you'll start seeing it in the image that you want to take with your iphone there's all kinds of different theories and color including complimentary and now this colors try attic and monochromatic so complementary colors are those opposite the color wheel they tend to vibrate very much there's lots of energy associated with it. I will often photographed children with complementary colors because it makes them seem alive and happy and very vivacious split complimentary mellows that down a little bit basically you take like purple and you split and add two other colors that soft green and a soft orange so you have three colors at this point working together that is a split complimentary theme that creates still that vibrance but it tones it down a little blight by splitting and choosing to colors on either side of the purples compliment you could do this anywhere on the color wheel well then there's like analogous color and analogous color is taking a primary like red, blue or yellow and then adding to that the two colors opposite the primary secondary okay, so you can choose green too if you wanted as your main color but then you pick the two opposite that to create an analogous scheme on the color wheel in other words, a skiing that's together on the color wheel try an iq colors are three colors that are unilaterally an equal laterally opposite on the color wheel so for example, here I chose purple, orange and green you could also the classic triad iq scheme is yellow, blue and red the primary colors okay, so here I chose the's secondary colors, but if you think about it combining those colors into an image and those of the on ly colors that are in your image will really create interesting feeling or mood in your images just based on color alone and then you combine that with the light quality that's in your image and you're starting to see how your image can take on a whole new meaning and more of an artistic format more pleasing to the eye by simply employing these just basic art techniques the final artistic technique that I want to talk to you about and I've alluded to a little bit before is composition where you place your subject matter inside the frame of your iphone can have an enormous impact on the look of the final image remember how I talked about that grid earlier? You could make the grid show up in your camera as you're shooting this is the great basically is a rule of thirds and the rule of thirds involves the power points where you make a crisscross tick tack toe box and those points where the lines intersect are very powerful composition points and you know I photograph a lot of babies that I'm known as a new born photographer so you're going to see a lot of many images here but composition is so important and creating that negative space can really add some impact here images so many people want to put the subject of smack dab in the center of the image and that isn't always the best spot for it and really you're images can get a lot more interesting if you start using the rule of thirds so I strongly suggest opening up your settings inside your iphone turning on that great and your camera it will help you create images more intuitively and get you learning how to use those rule of thirds another type of composition we call it the golden mean now I could get into the math and you know god iata but that would more you guys in a heartbeat but basically what it is it's kind of spiral composition if you think about in nature like a snail shell has that spiral, you'll actually see this ratio we call it in lots of different places in out mother nature so using that spiral composition can be really impact awful in your image is now this is a more of a complex type of competition but if you start seeing it like in staircases roadways things like that you really begin to see things a little bit differently and take better images backer saddle is another type of composition now it's based on a mathematical formula again not going to bore you with that but it's very close to the rule of thirds it depends on the cropping ratio of the overall image so say for example if you have a five by seven that's a little longer versus a on an eight by ten if you look at the ratio of that an eight by ten is a little more squat and a five by seven a little bit longer so what you basically do is you intersect your image from corner to corner with a line as as I showed you here that's the red line then what you do is go from the other two corners and intersect the line and a right angle so that you create a ninety degree angle between the red line in the blue line and then you start putting your subject on those points of intersection so this image right here was composed with backer saddle in mind you can see the diagonal lines in the floor echo the blue lines and then that red corner to corner line intersects right where the baby's face is creating a bakker saddle compositions all go back to it the way it looked before and then add in the backer saddle composition lines and you'll see how that image was created. So learned these different composition techniques even if you only start with the rule of thirds, which is kind of the easiest one, you'll begin to see your images in a whole new light and then start taking images better right out of the gate now granted, can you crop your images after the fact to have better composition? Ofthe course I do it all the time and sometimes a simple crop can make the world a difference in your images, so keep that in mind, but if you're thinking about it beforehand before you actually take the shot, you're going to wind up with a better images overall and your start improving your photography across the board camera angle camera angle is so important it's the point of view and I often use children as a reference for this because how you what camera angle you use for kids can have such an impact on the overall meaning of the image. So this is my boy again think about unconventional camera angles may be shooting your child from behind too see their perspective or their point of view get down low, you know, go shoot down low in their level so that you released kind of get equal ground with them and you can actually take some pretty amazing images of seeing things from their perspective, okay? And then from above from above always makes a child look small and kind of swing innocent. I'm I use this one sparingly because sometimes I think it can make a child feel insignificant maybe my bias, but I tend to like to shoot from their perspective, you know them looking away from me and shooting what they're seeing or getting down low to their level, because it really allows you to see the world from from their perspective and how low they are to the world and makes them seem larger than life, which I think sometimes it is a better way to photograph kids. But think about other images that you take with selfies and group shots and food shots, there's all different kinds of camera angles that will have a different impact not only in the way the actual subject matter looks, but also in the way the light is hitting the subject and we'll talk about that when actually demonstrates shooting with the iphone six death with different subject matters we're going, do groups were going to sell the's we're going to food, we're going to do pets and camera angle can be so critical to creating images that really shine and are interesting and print worthy when it comes down to

Class Description

You’re using your Apple® iPhone® as the interface for your personal world, but its value transcends that. The Apple iPhone 6s is a powerful, versatile piece of technology – particularly when it comes to capturing important life moments. Julia Kelleher will show you how to use your iPhone’s creative capacity to transform your pictures into professional-grade photographs.

In this class, you’ll learn: · 

  • New features to the iPhone 6s 
  • How to pose and light your images 
  • Use powerful apps to print images and edit videos 
  • Share your photos in print and on social media 

Julia will help you identify how to take advantage of the Apple iPhone 6s high-resolution capabilities by choosing the right apps and add-ons. Discover how quickly you can become a contributor to the thriving digital photography scene, or the official documentarian of your family and community.

Your phone is a potent tool to unlock your creative potential, and it’s probably sitting right in front of you as you read this. Sign on with Julia Kelleher for Apple iPhone 6s Photography to find out what you’re capable of!  

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Bonus Video: Skype Call with Julia - HD

Bonus Video: Skype Call with Julia - Low

iPhone 6s Useful Resources

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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I loved this...Julia was awesome, the quality of the course was amazing and now I'm going to go upgrade my iPhone 6 to 6s b/c I loved this so much

a Creativelive Student

Easy to understand, clear descriptions of iPhone capabilities, settings, and examples--and invitingly presented. More than just a description of the phone, etc. I feel excited and capable to take more and better pictures because I am more equipped to try new ideas rather than just point and shoot as usual. Lively and fun to watch! I watched the entire class!


Julia did a great job covering more than just the basics about iPhonography and the upgrade to 6s. I shoot professionally and was able to glean many great tips from her. Her suggestions on lighting, composition, etc are outstanding and well worth the time to watch this video. Thanks, Julia! I'll look for you on social media and begin following your work!