How to take better product shots with just your smartphone

Sometimes you need photographs for a project and the only camera that you have on hand is the one on your phone. That’s okay! In the words of Tim Gunn, make it work. Whether it’s a blog post or refreshing the images on your website, here are some handy tips on how you can use your smartphone to capture great images and perfect product shots.

Be a sharp shooter.


No matter how steady your hand is, when you tap your phone to take a photo there’s a chance that it’s not as clear as it could possibly be. When you want to reduce the chance of error, use a tripod and a timer on your phone to make your images less blurry.

Tip: If you don’t have a tripod that you can use, find a flat surface that something that you can prop your phone up on. If you have an iPhone you can use the volume control on the headphones to snap photos without having to tap the screen. Check out this article for more tips on how to taking sharp photos.

Get snap happy.


Take more photos than what you need and then edit down later. Take a couple photographs from different angles and try out different backgrounds. It’s better to have too many photos to choose from than too little!

Resist using the built in zoom.

iphone-lensImage via Photojojo

If you’re looking to take close-up shots of your products, avoid using the built in zoom of your camera phone. If you want a macro shot with lots of detail there are special lenses that you can get for your smartphone to give you the shots that you’re looking for.

Brighten up your surroundings.

lightingImage via ohmyveggies

It shows in your photos if there isn’t enough light. Your images will appear grainy and you’ll lose the detail that you want to achieve in great product shots. To improve the lighting in your shots: shoot near a window, use external light sources, and use a foam board to help bounce the light where you need it. You’ll see an improvement in your photos if you do one, two, or all three of these things!

Tip: Always avoid using your flash! Your pictures will look so much better if you stick to natural light or external lights.

Edit and enhance.


There so many photo editing apps out there that make it easy to improve the brightness, contrast, enhance certain colours, adjust the white balance, and add filters to your photos. It can be tempting to get filter happy on Instagram, but try apps that give you more freedom to edit photos. Some great ones are Snapseed, VSCO Cam, and Camera+.

Do you have any iPhone photography tips? Let us know and share your product shots with us too!

Brittany Giles is the Social Media Specialist at The Printing House.

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