Amber Mac, author, tech guru and co-host of the online show The Social Hour, appreciates the potential of smart-phone cameras. As a busy mom to four-year-old Connor, she takes all of her family photos on both her iPhone and Android, “I love having a camera in my pocket so I can capture those spontaneous moments, whether we’re at home or on vacation,” she explains.
We asked Mac for a few tips on how to get the perfect pics of your brood using your phone’s camera.
While you might be tempted to use the zoom function, your best bet is to move closer to your tots. Fill your frame – get up close, down low or wherever you need to be to fill your screen.Photo: Andi Pantz/iStockphoto
Since it’s sometimes impossible to get your kids to stay put for a picture, be sure your hand is steady when you push the shutter button.
Whenever possible, use natural light. If you’re in a room with a window, make sure your back faces it, so that the light illuminates little ones. If low or unpredictable lighting is a concern, consider purchasing a mini tripod.
A versatile model, like one with flexible legs, allows you to wrap it around just about anything, from tabletops to monkey bars.
Experimenting with an external lens kit can transform your humble smart phone into a whole new game. The Photojojo Photo Lens Series offers fisheye, telephoto, wide-angle and macro lenses, giving you better creative control of your shots.
Long soccer field? Add a zoom lens. Small space with a large, fun-loving group? A wide-angle lens could be your phone’s new best friend.
Some smart-phone cameras offer handy built-in filters like auto-lighting and auto-enhancement, but you can also use different filtering apps to pretty-up your pictures.
“There’s nothing better than a good filter to make a dull photo shine; plus, Connor loves helping me choose one, so it’s a fun family process,” says Mac.
There’s not a lot of glass on your tiny smart-phone lens, so any bit of dirt will leave a negative impression. Use an appropriate cloth (you can get a lens cleaner at the dollar store) or a soft cotton T-shirt to avoid scratches.
“When your kids have their hands all over your smart phone like my little guy does, it’s easy to mistake a blurry photo for a smudge mark on your lens.”
Online shops like canvaspop.com offer one of the highest-quality canvas print services. They can also turn your digital images into original photo mosaics, collages or decorative canvas prints.
Canadian company staticpixels.com has created a funky way to print your Instagram images onto recycled cardboard pieces. These five-inch-square prints come with their own stand or can be wall-mounted.
Want your picture to “stick” around? Check out stickygram.com, a printing service that turns Instagram images into magnets.
Persnicketyprints.com allows you to upload photos directly from your camera, Instagram or Facebook albums and design custom smart-phone cases.
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