Macro Mobile Photography: What Are You Doing Wrong?

The word macro needs no introduction. It means big, as big as you can possibly imagine. However, when we talk about the world of photography, the situation is only slightly different – macro photography is all about photographing your subject from really close proximity.

Whether you’re a seasoned photographer or just an amateur one, who loves to take stunning images of their surroundings, there are times when you’re not accompanied by your DSLR. You obviously don’t carry it everywhere with you, right?

So, in a situation like this, when you come across something that you know has the potential to turn into a spectacular macro shot, what do you reach for? Your mobile phone of course!
Thank the Lord for these smart devices that allow us to capture moments that would be lost had the world depended solely on professional cameras!

Coming back to the point – you may be quite familiar with the way you shoot macro images with a camera, but when it comes to doing the same with a mobile phone, people make mistakes. Perhaps, even you are doing that.
The most common ones include:

Not Getting Close Enough
The entire essence of macro photography is to capture the complex and interesting composition of your subject that isn’t visible to the naked eye from a distance. In order to do that, you need to take an extremely close-up shot of your subject.

With professional cameras, it is easier to adjust the lens until it gives you the desired image composition that highlights the real feel and texture of your subject. With mobile phones it’s different. Zooming in too much might result in grainy, pixelated images – not something you’re looking for.

Instead of doing that, just get as close to the subject as you can – even if it means holding the phone camera just an inch above the object. This will give you a macro image that is crisp and stunning.

Not Using the Manual Mode
There’s a reason modern day phones are called “smart” phones. You just need to prompt them and they’ll do half the job for you – like the camera auto-focusing on the subject when you frame it on your screen. Now you need to realize that perfect focus is an integral element of macro photography.
You need to capture the bright pink spots on the lilies – you need to focus on them, just like you’ll have to focus on the pattern that makes up your fingertip. The auto focus mode will focus on the object but perhaps fail to do so, on the real object you wish to photograph.

Switch to manual mode instead. Use your finger to manually tap and hold on the object that you need to focus on. This will help you lock focus and capture just the image you need.

Not Paying Attention to the Lighting

It doesn’t matter whether you’re shooting photographs with a DSLR or a mobile phone, unless you get the lighting right, your image wouldn’t turn out the way you want it to. For macro photography, the best light you can use is a soft, natural one.

This obviously means that you need to be careful about two things in particular:

  1. You shoot in a place that has plenty of natural light.
  2. You pick the right time for capturing these images.

Macro photography turns out best outdoors. If not outdoors, try shooting in a room that has plenty of sunshine – not the overpowering sort though.

When shooting outdoors, make sure you shoot somewhere around early to mid morning or during mid afternoon to avoid the harsh midday sun.

The next time you try capturing macro images from your mobile phone, make sure not to make these mistakes. The results will be way better than what you got previously! Do you have any tips to share with us? We would love to hear them. Leave us a comment below.

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