We’ve all been there. You’re at a job site and you see the perfect opportunity to take a photo for your website. You grab your iPhone and snap a few pictures, but when you go to post them online you notice that the pictures are terrible! Do you need to spend lots of money on fancy equipment to solve this problem? Absolutely not! If you follow these simple tips, you can take beautiful “share-worthy” photos with your smartphone in a flash (pun intended)!  

Tip 1: Clean off your lens.

The day-to-day use of your smartphone can be fairly grimy. Think about it—you put your phone in your pockets, you use it when you’re eating, it occasionally falls onto the floor or into the dirt... If your photos are murky or blurry, a smudged, dirty lens is probably to blame. To clean it, use a microfiber cloth like you would use to clean a pair of glasses.

Tip 2: Adjust the brightness and contrast levels. 

Most smartphones have an “auto enhance” tool in their camera apps. Auto Enhance usually does a pretty good job making really dark or really light photos a little easier on the eyes. If you’d like more control or if auto enhance just isn’t getting it done, there are several inexpensive (or free) photo apps that allow you to manually adjust brightness and contrast.

If you use Instagram to share your photos, adjusting brightness and contrast, and sharing your work can be a one-stop-shop. Simply boost the brightness just a tad and then boost the contrast just a little bit more, right inside the Instagram app!

Tip 3: Intensify the color. 

Smartphone photos tend to be a little muted and dull. Filters are an instant, easy fix! Just use your phone’s camera app and navigate to the edit screen. Here you will be able to find filters to give your picture more punch. Just don’t go too crazy—there’s no reason for that geothermal installation to look like a 1960’s movie.

Tip 4: Control the Exposure.

Exposure is the intensity of light the image sensor is exposed to. You can do some major change to the mood of a photo by forcing your phone to over or under-expose your photo. One easy-as-pie way to do this with your built-in camera app is to tap the screen in the lightest or darkest area and watch the changes that occur. Try making three photos: One normally, one by tapping a dark area of your scene, and one by tapping the brightest area. Compare the differences and decide which is best!

Tip 5: Have Fun With Your Phone’s Flash.

The general rule of smartphone flash is to use it as little as possible. But every rule has exceptions. The first exception is if you are taking photos at night or in a poorly lit basement, make sure you use the flash. The second exception is if you are taking a photo of a deeply shadowed face with a brilliant bright sky or window behind it. In this situation, take the iPhone out of its default auto flash mode and set it to On to take the shadow off a person's face. This will cause the background to be slightly overexposed, but it's the best way to go if the person is the subject of your photo.

Tip 6: Stitch photos together in split-frames.

Did you know your phone can join photos together just like you would in a real frame? You can use apps like TwinCollage, PicFrame and WoW Camera to combine multiple photos to show action sequences, or make interesting comparisons. This is a great technique for before and after photos!

Tip 7: Use Burst Mode.

Trying to get a picture of some fast action? To help capture a picture at just the right moment, use the camera's burst mode. This will take several shots in a row, helping you to get at least one at just the right moment. If you’re using an iPhone 5s, simply hold down the shutter button to trigger burst shooting of 10 photos per second.


With these few simple changes your photos will go from blah to brilliant! Remember that your smartphone is a really powerful tool as long as you know how to use it. So don’t take awful smartphone photos! 


P.S. Don’t forget to send us your new and awesome geothermal installation photos! We love highlighting our dealers on our social media channels.