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iPhone X: The Quick Guide to Great Photos + Video

Lesson 6 of 12

Taking Portrait Photos on iPhone

Chase Jarvis

iPhone X: The Quick Guide to Great Photos + Video

Chase Jarvis

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Lesson Info

6. Taking Portrait Photos on iPhone
Here you’ll learn how to create the perfect soft focus background and the classic ways to frame a portrait.

Lesson Info

Taking Portrait Photos on iPhone

Whether you're inside in the studio or outside this portrait mode is insanely effective at creating that soft focus background that we all have come to love so much with really high and expensive cameras. Now that technologies bacon toe IPhone 10. This is probably my most used feature on the new phone, so just what you should think about a couple of classic, um, ways to frame a portrait. I've got the light behind him onto one of like onto his shoulder here. Rather than blasting him right in the face, it's gonna create a nice little this little rim lying around him. There will take a couple with this helmet on. He's just relaxing. This is totally natural. I haven't coached him at all, and that's exactly sort of the mode that I want to get him in. So I'm in portrait mode here. If you have live photo turned on, you can take the portrait, and then afterwards you can switch between any of those portrait mode. So I'm just going to sit here and talk to him, tap on the phone where I want the t...

he exposure. Bring that up just a little bit nice one man. That looks great. Okay. Come toward me Just a little bit with your head with your chin. You got a smile, You got a smile on their and No. There you go. I think that hat off for a second. Take you home without for me. It's awesome. Okay, There you go. Nice, But okay, I'm just kind of working the light a little bit. I'm letting the now it's going to start to move this way a little bit. You want a hand that to your dad? Awesome. Now, you stay exactly where you are and accept. Bring your chin around to me. There you go. That's amazing. Perfect. Okay, that's a fake smile. Check that out. There you go. Nice. All right. Gonna increase the explosion just a little bit there. Awesome. All right, Now I'm gonna keep just working around just a little bit. What? You bring your bike and pointed a little bit more toward me Now, there you go. Keep going. Keep coming this way. That's great. There you go. Let's go ahead and look off to my right. Right here. There you go. Perfect. Will smile. That's cheesy. Smile. Shake that one out. you got that? Imagine that. You're seeing yourself boost out of the half pipe right there. There you go. Nice and real serious. Right to me. Smirk. A little smile. There's that smile. There you go. You didn't really close here. Where's your smile? But there you go. That's it. That's the one. Perfect. I'm gonna back up just a little bit. You stay right where you're at. This is one of the things it's. I think it's one of the dirtiest secrets and photography, and it's only dirty because no one talks about it. We take so many more pictures than people think we do. So look, he's been sitting here for two minutes. I'm just taking all kinds of pictures. He's being patient. It doesn't always work that way. But when you have the flexibility, why not take instead of one picture, take 10. Nice one. Let's go ahead and lean on your lean on your bars like that. There you go. But that's awesome. That's a serious little bit of smile. There. Here you go. Nice. That's great. There. Perfect. Okay. I like this little backlit Look that we've got. Nice one. Check that dude out. Skating nice little smile. There you go. But nice. So one of the things you got to know about the IPhone 10 is that it also works in portrait mode for this front facing camera, so makes it extra good for selfies. Nice. All right, we're just wrapping up here. The skate park, the lights really low. I thought would be a great moment to capture a little family portrait with Sauron and his mom and dad. There's just against the sun's just about to go behind the horizon here. So I thought I'd work a quick little portrait right here. What? You guys come on in. So this is Jason and Magan Sauron's parents. Thank you guys. So much for lead investors. I'm gonna be you guys just for a second. How about here? What I'm trying to do is trying to make each of these people have about the same visual weight in the photo. Now, Jason's a lot bigger than these two, so I'm gonna have you let a little bit back. Meghan, you're gonna come in right in here and sore. It's gonna pop right in here. So we're all about the same amount of the body facing the camera so we don't take so you don't take up a lot more visual. Wait, You're a bigger guy. Yeah. There you go. Bigger guy. So Megan's gonna slide right in there after you hop up on this table here? Yeah. It's kind of your slouching in there a little bit. They're going. Megan's gonna come right in front of Jason. There you go. Like that. Such a good picture. You guys, It's so cute. I'm framing everything out. We get the city in the background, that money shot here, I'll crop out some of those white post in the background. I'm also gonna try getting a little further back. I'm gonna tap on the front of them, so I get a nice exposure. There we go. You can see that now. I can still see the city. Look again. The difference between if I'm zoomed out. Everything has a really similar visual. Wait. I punch into the telephoto. These guys stand off from the city there. There's a nice city in the background. That's awesome. You guys look so good. Perfect. I must say I got that one can. Now we're gonna get some front light with these guys, so it lights going down. One should come over here. Little sliver a light down. Here were that same thing. We're just gonna pile the family in the corner here. Go ahead. We're gonna put Jason at the back again because he's got a lot, lot more visual weight than the rest of the family. And we're gonna tuck you in there nice and get really Get in there. Megan, Let's have We're gonna have some sort of step forward for a second. Let let your mom and dad snuggling. They're really good. There you go. Oh, this is great. There you go. Thanks, guys. My five nisman, but And that's a wrap. Just a couple quick tips as we wrap up one. When we're out here shooting Portrait's I couldn't recommend the portrait mode Mawr, and we're in a really challenging environment, not the most sexy backdrops to get a shipyard. We got an old skatepark in some dilapidated buildings. Put that thing in portrait mode and get these beautiful shots with the crisp foreground. And that out of focus soft background thing, too. I love putting the sunlight to the subjects back when I'm shooting portrait mode. Sure, when there's a nice like sun, everyone's. You know skin looks really nice when it's warm and rich, but there's nothing like that little rim light that you can get when you put your subjects back to the light. You can tap on the subjects foreground. That will help the camera get the correct exposure and a nice focus. And then you just snapped the photograph and then third. Last but not least, you saw me go in there and tell them exactly what I wanted. Sure, there's all kinds of great ways to capture, like, really candid moments. That's one of the biggest advantages with the phone. But if you have a moment just to tell people Teoh get together to smile, you feel free to direct them. That's the thing that I think most people underestimate what it takes to make a great photograph. If you actually shape people and pose them in a way that's really appealing and pleasing to your eye, you're gonna get Mawr good pictures more often, All right, that wraps it up for the portrait session on to the next lesson

Class Description


  • Know which lighting option to use to get the best image—studio light, natural light, low light, stage light, or studio mono.
  • Use the dual optical image stabilization for taking an image when you’re in motion.
  • Capture macro images such as flowers and details on clothing.
  • Take a great selfie.
  • Know how and when to use the different lenses built into your iPhone, including optical, wide angle, telephoto lens, and digital zoom.
  • Make your photos look great in post-processing using lighting effects, filters, tone, brightness, color, saturation, cropping, and more.


If you’ve got a new iPhone X or another type of advanced smartphone, you’ve got a powerful, professional-grade camera able to achieve the same kind of results that used to require a $10,000 investment. The problem is, most people aren’t familiar enough with their phone’s features to take full advantage of its photographic capabilities.

This short, impactful course on Apple iPhone photography is designed to change the way you take pictures with your phone and give you the knowledge you need to use your camera to its full potential. You’ll be amazed at how a few key tips and tricks can revolutionize the way you shoot and result in gorgeous photos that will make people think you’re a real pro.

This class will help you:

  • Learn simple portrait mode posing techniques for kids, adults, families, and groups.
  • Capture those fleeting, candid moments, including action shots of fast-moving subjects.
  • Get tips for shooting gorgeous landscapes and cityscapes.
  • Use natural light to create both indoor and outdoor portraits.
  • Utilize the newest Apple iPhone X camera features to capture gorgeous 4K and slo-mo video.
  • Go on a tour of key iPhone X camera features that will help you make the most of the new technology.

Photographer, entrepreneur, and CreativeLive founder and CEO Chase Jarvis is the ideal instructor for this course. Chase is a pioneer in mobile photography, having created the world’s first book of mobile photos and popularized the saying “the best camera is the one that’s with you.” In his down-to-earth style, Chase gives you just the right amount of instruction to help you capture amazing portraits, action photos, landscapes, and videos. This class will take you through various real-life scenarios that help you shoot pictures that you’re excited to share.


  • People who want to take better photos with their phones and know more about the new features of their device.
  • Those who want to learn about new and undiscovered features of their iPhone X camera app to take great photos.
  • People who want to learn the basics of photo composition and lighting so they can take the best shots.

Apple iPhone X


JB Minton

This is a fantastic kick start to giving you the fundamentals and inspiration to pick up your phone and start documenting the beauty around you, every day. Taking photos has become my favorite social expression now, given that I can do it without getting into politics or descending into the negative energy that infest social media. Taking photos can be 100% inspirational and positive and this course is a great beginning to makin that happen. Chase is a great instructor and you will walk away with more knowledge than you came in with. Perfect length of course also! Loved it!

Nicole Abate Ducarroz

WOW! Just Wow! This class was not only very informative but also entertaining and kept moving right along. I loved how Chase teaches and would take a class from him any day. It was organized, yet very casual and natural. It was relevant and applied to not only iPhone X users but all iPhones too. I LOVED this class! Thank you!

Hannes Schiebel

Yes, you can find many if not all of the that stuff shown here somewhere else - probably for free. But in my opinion, this is a great class. Chase Jarvis does a really great job of sending the most important message of photography: The best camera is the one you have with you - and he shows me that the iPhone X camera is a very good camera. Take this class, be inspired - I think I will take better photos now :)