Back in the day, taking a memorable photo required a lot of effort. Without a nice camera and editing software, you wouldn’t get far at all, not to mention the time you’d need to invest in learning how to use them. But in this day and age, all you need is a smartphone and you’re in business.

Today, you can take high quality pictures and use editing apps to retouch them as needed – all on your phone. And while your smartphone may have simplified the process, it’s important to recognize that getting a quality photo isn’t just a “point and shoot” job.

So how do you take a quality picture with your phone? Try a few of the tips below to improve your smartphone photography skills.

5 Useful Phone Photography Tips

1. Balance your shot with gridlines.

When you turn on the camera gridlines on your phone, a series of lines are superimposed on the camera screen. Gridlines are based upon the photographic composition principle known as the rule of thirds. According to the rule of thirds, if you place points of interest along the lines or within the intersections of the gridlines, the photo will be more level and balanced, allowing viewers to interact with it more naturally as a result.

To switch the grid on …

  • iPhone: Go to Settings > Photos & Camera, and switch Grid on.
  • Samsung: Launch the Camera app > Settings, and scroll down to switch the grid lines option on.

2. Use natural light.

Your smartphone’s camera does come with a flash, yes – but that doesn’t mean you have to use it. Flash can create an overexposed effect that washes out your subject and alters color negatively.

On the other hand, the right amount of natural light can give your photos a positive glow. If you’re taking photos indoors, try to do so near windows or doors. Even at night, you can play with sources of light like a street lamp or neon sign before you turn the flash on.

3. Resist the temptation to zoom in.

You might be surprised to learn that if you’re trying to capture a specific subject from a distance, it’s better not to use the zoom feature. Zooming in can create a grainy, pixelated effect on your photos.

Try to close the distance gap or even take the photo from a distance and crop it later to get your desired closeness. The higher your photo’s resolution is, the better the crop will be.

4. Focus on one subject.

This is particularly important for visual marketing. Several of the most compelling photographs in the world focus on a single subject. So take a little extra care when you’re trying to capture your brand images, paying attention to negative space, symmetry, and any other ways you might be able to catch the eye of a viewer.

To ensure that the lighting and focus are properly optimized, tap your screen where you want to focus the photo.

5. Don’t forget to edit.

Remember, taking photos on your phone isn’t just a “point and shoot” job. If you really want to make your pictures visually interesting, it’s crucial that you edit your photos.

Filters and correction tools are incredibly valuable for removing blemishes and providing a clean, professional touch to your images. And with apps like A Color Story, you can retouch photos in no time at all.

Do you have any tricks you use to take brand photos on your phone? Tell us in the comments below!