#PicPerfectWithThree -Mobile Phone Photography Course

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Last Saturday I was lucky enough to be invited on a mobile photography course organised by Three Mobile. As you may have guessed this post is going to be photo heavy. I struggled to narrow down my favourites from the day. 

Seven bloggers met up at Ziferblat gallery in the Northern Quarter of Manchester. This is a really cool place where everything inside in free and you pay a few pence and hour to spend time there. I really need to go back and spend a couple of hours there,

Three had enlisted a local photographer Aidan to guide us through some of the pitfalls and give up hints and tips when using mobile phone camera's. We also went on a photo walk around the Northern Quarter followed by an tea, cake and a chance to take some photo's inside.

We started out by looking at some pictures taken by Aidan on the Samsung S6 phone and he talked us through changing the exposure and showed us the same photo with different exposures to see the difference and we talked about colour balance and tips for making outfit pictures looking better.

A lot of it is subjective and depends on the look you are going for, but there were lots of tips for making whites look white and blacks look black.

It made me look at the settings on my camera phone and I can change the ISO and Exposure myself and it's worth taking a few pictures of the same things with different settings to see what works best.

The app snapseed was mentioned which I've never used but need to install on my phone as you can look at and edit the histogram on that app. I'm not that good on the basics of photography which is terrible as I love taking pictures and my original blog was photography (point and shoot but still).

Aidan had also selected a few photo's from our blogs, I was going to say he critiqued them but it was positive hints and tips.

I do want to improve my photography and I feel like I am trying but sometimes I get frustrated and give up. I need to get organised and take pictures at weekend when I can get the light but a lot of the time I'm taking pictures at night and can think of better things to do than setting up a light cube. I might start to make the effort and I love seeing good quality pictures on blogs and I don't do it myself.

I am going to use some of these tips including using a light reflector, You can get small ones for about £5 on amazon and while I don't think I will be taking one out and about with me for product pictures in my room I think they they will help. You can also use white paper and card rather than buying an actual reflector.

Three lent us each a Samsung S6 phone to use for the day and I have to say I'm I love with that phone. I had the Edge version and it felt so nice to use. The camera is the same MP as my S5 but the quality seems so much better. Helped by it not having a cracked camera lens. 

We went for a walk around the Northern Quarter with Aidan on hand to look at our pictures and give us hints as well as sharing his local knowledge.  

Stevenson's Square provided us with lots of photo opportunities with the Graffiti wall in the centre of the square. One of the things we were talking about is getting a blurred background with a camera phone and camera phones don't have the technology (lens size??) to create a large amount of blur, you can get some but not as much as with a DSLR. However when you use the camera to take a macro photo you can get a really good blur and for product pictures I think this would work well. 

We'd take a large piece of heavy weight card with us to act as a reflector. I was really surprised by the difference it make. On the original parts of my face are over exposed and there are a lot of shadow but the reflector as helped to reduce that and my forehead and cheek is still has spots of over exposed area's it looks much better. I'm not going to have an entourage carry a reflector for whenever a selfie moment strikes it has made me think more about the light source and made me see for myself the difference it can make. 

On the way back we stopped in the alley at the side of Stevenson Square and took a selfie of a selfie of a selfie and someone else took a picture of us all taking this. You had to be there I'm sure!! 

After some tea and cake and I played with the camera setting as someone had asked how to take a B&W picture and editing tools were mentioned but I found the grey scale options within the phone camera settings.

We then headed into the next door room to use a continuous lighting system rather than a flash for taking pictures and I wanted to share the stairs and bow and arrow picture I snapped on our way pack to the venue,

I also took this picture of pencils while I was watching the others take selfies in front of the blackboard. I did use some of the tips by moving round as the angle I tried first I was casting a shadow so I did move my position to get a better picture and I'm really happy with how it's turned out.  

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