Easiest Photography - Create stunning and instagram worthy photos using your phone | Rose Nene | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Easiest Photography - Create stunning and instagram worthy photos using your phone

teacher avatar Rose Nene, Photographer and Videographer

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Why is Photography fun


    • 3.

      The most important element


    • 4.

      The Creative Part - Planning


    • 5.

      The Creative Part - Composition


    • 6.



    • 7.

      The Technical: Camera setup and settings


    • 8.



    • 9.

      Creating depth


    • 10.

      Panorama, HDR and Macro


    • 11.

      How to edit or enhance your photos and create presets


    • 12.

      How to properly export your photos


    • 13.

      Sharing your work


  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

Smartphone Photography

Create stunning and instagram worthy photos using your phone

Rose is a full time Photographer and Entrepreneur. She started her business with a borrowed camera and minimal gear. Now she and her husband run a full time events Photography and Videography business. During her free time Rose loves to create courses and conduct workshop on Photography. In this class she will walk you through the entire process of creating professional looking and instagram worthy photos using your smartphone.

The lessons include:

-The fun behind Photography

-Why lighting is very important

-How to plan and get inspirations

-How to compose your scene for better photos

-How to tell stories using your photos

-Smartphone camera setup

-Exposure and creating depth

-How to take photos using Panorama, HDR and Macro

-Editing, enhancing and properly exporting photos for best quality

-Sharing your photos

This class is perfect for anyone who wants to take great photos using their smartphone, for photographers who want to add to their skillset and absolutely anyone who wants to discover and learn something new.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Rose Nene

Photographer and Videographer

Top Teacher

Hi there! I'm Rose, and I'm here to help you level up your photography and videography game. With a background in events, food, and product photography, I've been through it all, including those times I made mistakes and invested in gear and props that ended up collecting dust.

My mission is to share all those valuable lessons with you, so you can avoid the pitfalls and fast-track your skills. Whether you're an aspiring photographer or videographer, my experience can be your guide. In my classes, I offer you all the wisdom I've gathered, guiding you through avoiding common mistakes and mastering essential techniques to enhance your photography and videography skills. :)

Why I teach?

I believe that education makes the w... See full profile

Level: Beginner

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • 0%
  • Yes
  • 0%
  • Somewhat
  • 0%
  • Not really
  • 0%

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. Introduction: Hi there. My name is Rose. I am a photographer, videographer, and entrepreneur. Four years ago, my husband and I started our photo and video business with a borrowed camera and minimal gear, but that did not stop us from growing our business. Today we operate in complete gear, but our trademark of capturing moments, and real stories, and emotions stay the same. In this class, I will teach you the basics and fundamentals of photography using just your smartphones. I have divided this class into two parts; the creative and the technical part. In the creative part, you will learn how to plan for a shoot, how to get your creative juice flowing, how to develop your personal style, how to compose and tell stories through your photos, and in the technical part, you will learn about smartphone camera settings and setup, file formats, editing, and exporting your photos for best upload quality. This class is perfect for beginners who want to take great photos using their smartphone, for photographers who want to add to their skill set, and absolutely anyone who wants to discover and learn something new. At the end of this class, you will have a basic understanding of photography, as well as powerful tools and tips that can help your smartphone photography go to the next level. Get ready when people ask you, "Did you take those photos? Because they look amazing." I can't wait to see your photos in the project section after taking this class. See you in the first lesson. 2. Why is Photography fun : In this lesson, instead of reading to you the definition of photography, I will answer the question, why is photography fun? Number 1, because you will have the ability to capture a moment as it happens with just a single click of a button. Number 2, the emotions of photograph can throw back at you, can be overwhelming at times regardless of technical execution. It can immortalize the things we care about. Number 3, there is more to photography than just taking pictures. The benefits of photography can enrich your life in both simple and stellar ways; from recording events, capturing moments, travel, meeting new people, joining a creative community, developing a personal style and more. Photography can motivate you to experience more, to go to different places, to do more and learn more. Number 4, it helps us to connect to our past, associate as in an event and preserve memories. Finally, my very own experience, photography literally changed my life. It led me to people I never imagined I would work with. It led me to a big break project. Photography gave a way for me to leave my day job and be able to help and teach aspiring photographers full time. But nothing in life is worth doing unless you're really serious about it. If photography sparks joy in your heart, if you want to make photography a hobby or a side hustle, this course or this class will help you get started. In the next lesson, we will learn the most important element of photography. 3. The most important element : Lesson 2, the most important element, light. The word photography was created from the Greek roots, photo's which means light, and graphe which is representation by means of lines or drawing. Together it means drawing with light. From there we can say that lighting is very important in photography. Actually, when the lighting is right, your photos will improved a lot already, just with lighting or with just correct lighting. But really what do we mean by this? How can we do proper lighting in photography? There are different types of lighting in photography. We have natural and we have artificial lighting. Natural light is the light coming from the sun. Artificial is light coming from flash, studio, LED light, lamp light, fluorescent light, ring light, etc. When you are starting out, it is best to start with natural light because number 1, it's free. Number 2, it's beautiful, and number 3, as long as it's daytime, it is available. Next, let's talk about the direction of light. We have lateral, diagonal, and backlight. Lateral light is the light coming from three o'clock or nine o'clock of the subject. Diagonal light is light coming from the 11 o'clock and one o'clock of the subject. Backlight from the word itself, light coming from the back of the subject, creating silhouette. Now, why is this important? Proper lighting helps add depth and texture to your photos. Remember, photography is drawing with light. We play and manipulate light to create our photos. To further explain this, let me show you examples of different photos shot at different lighting conditions. When you are taking pictures with your phone, first thing to consider is lighting. If you are taking pictures of your food, make sure that you are using a single light source. Follow the lateral light direction to give your image a 3D look. When outside, aim to shoot at golden hours, meaning within one hour after sunrise and within one hour before sunset. Let me show you example of beautiful photos taken during golden hours. 4. The Creative Part - Planning : How do we get our creative juice flowing? One great way is looking for inspiration and creating a sketch or a plan. This is a lifesaver in my career as a photographer. Planning. Well, actually not just in photography, but in all aspects of my life. In the planning stage, what I do is decide what final photo I would want to achieve. To help me decide, for example, if I am working with a client, I would ask them what theme or mood they want. Another great way to find inspiration is Instagram. You can simply type hashtag and the image that you are planning to create. Decide what the final photo or photos look like to you. Here are questions and tips to help you decide. Number 1, what is the mood that I am going for? Number 2, what do I want my target audience to feel? Number 3, what is the story you are trying to tell? Number 4, if you are traveling, search for photos taken on that location and see if anything will inspire you to recreate that photo with your own personal style. Finally, write a shot list, meaning write down all the ideas that you can think of for this photo shoot. When you're on that moment you have a list because sometimes we get mental block and we get overwhelmed when we go to a scene. But when we have a shortlist, when we have a list or a plan, there's something that we can go back to. It's something that could guide us and that disrupt our creative process. Have fun, it's your turn. Plan for a shoot. Maybe just taking pictures of flowers in your backyard, taking pictures of your food, write down your ideas and look for inspiration online. Answer all the questions. What is the mood that I'm going for? What do I want my target audience to feel? What is the story you are trying to tell? Create your own short list. 5. The Creative Part - Composition: Next lesson for the creative part composition. Now that you have a plan, another tool that will help you create stunning photos is the composition guide. Composition is what guides our eyes through a photograph and gives importance to the subject in relation to the rest of the photo. Basically, it is how the subject and other elements are arranged in a photo. It is important to go into every shoot with a precise idea of how you want the result to look. With practice, you will develop your own style and a talent for composition and photo design. When starting out, it is natural to place your subject at the center of the frame. However, in a photograph having your subject placed dead center, often leads to a boring composition. Doing so makes our photographs look predictable. The rule of thirds is one of the most popular compositional techniques. The rule of thirds divide your scene into a three-by-three grid with equal-sized rectangles. To follow this rule, compose your subject in one-third of the frame or on the line. This creates a more dynamic and pleasing composition since it gives more emphasis to your subject and their environment. Hi there, so I am now outside, I am ready to shoot using my smartphone. I have an Android phone and I have an iPhone, I think it's an iPhone 8, and I have this little guy here as my subject. Most of my photos, I will be using this wooden toy as a subject if I don't have any. But I'm outside, I have all this landscape, I have all these flowers I can use as a subject, but if I don't have one, I'm going to use it so I can better tell you or better explain to you these things and the fundamentals of photography. I also have my cheat sheet; I told you about planning. If I just went out here and started shooting, I don't think it would be pretty. So I have my cheat sheet, I have a guide, I have something to always go back to when I feel lost. I have here my list of composition that I'll show you. I have the storytelling, all of that. So yes, it's very important to have a plan, to have a cheat sheet, to have a shortlist. All right, let's get started. First, the rule of thirds. I will just turn on my screen recorder so you can also see what's happening on my phone. I want to open Lightroom for mobile. I have my Android phone, so I'll be using Lightroom for mobile camera pro as my camera app. I'm opening the camera. Make sure that your grid is turned on. To do that, make sure that you're on professional. I chose DNG instead of JPEG because I want to shoot in raw. DNG means a raw. It means it takes all the details in a photo. In JPEG it's like the camera does all the baking and all the adjustment for you. You don't have much control in the editing room. Well, that's fine if you're in a hurry, if you're more of a JPEG, shoot and upload person. But for me, I like to edit, enhance, and do little tweaks on my photos, making sure that it's decent, that the crop is correct. So I like to take my photos in raw. If you have Adobe Lightroom Camera Pro or if you have other camera pro apps on your smartphone, best to shoot using raw or DNG. I'll just reset it. Here's my screen. I selected Pro, I selected DNG. Make sure that you also have the grids. Turning on the grid, you just press on that three buttons, and then the eye icon, and then you have the grids. Let's select that grids. With the rule of thirds, I mentioned that you place your subject in the third of the liner, or in the third triangle, or the third intersection. Let's take a shot. We can also do it on the other side. We can also do it in landscape. Maybe we can change his hands, so it's like he's doing a tour for us. That's how we do rule of thirds. Next, out-of-focus, depth, and foreground. In this composition technique, try to focus on your subject and make them stand out by narrowing in on the contrast between the subject and the background. The more contrast, the more dynamic your shots and the more prominent your subject will be. A winning photo composition also remains the one where your main subject is isolated due to the contrast solution. Including some foreground interests in a scene is a great way of adding a sense of depth to the scene. Photographs or photos are 2D or two-dimensional by nature. Including foreground interests in the frame is one of the number of techniques to give the scene a more 3D feel and look. For our depth of field, I'll be photographing this rose right here. This big rose is my subject. Then I'll be using these leaves as my foreground, and then the grass and all the other flowers as my background. As you can see, I'm using foreground and the background to separate my subject from its environment. That's how you use depth of field to create a 3D look in your photo as well as to tell your story and create a good composition. Let me show you how I will do that on my smartphone. It's a bit windy in here, so the flower is moving. I'm making sure that it's focused on our subject, which is the flower. Now it's focused, then we take a photo. It's blurry, so I'll take another one because it's moving. There's no wind, so I'll take this opportunity. It is still blurry, so I will be adjusting the shutter speed. That's how you capture motion, by adjusting the shutter speed. Next, I will be using my iPhone as well to take the photo. I'm just using the normal camera app for the iPhone. It's now recording, so I'm just taking a photo. Let's take another one. If you're not happy with your composition, you can move to get the right angle. I'm happy with that. That's for our depth of field. Another way to make your subject stand out is by using contrasting colors. Examples of this include vibrant versus muted colors, warm versus cool colors, and dark versus light colors. For contrasting colors, I will be using these roses again because it contrasts with its leaves, red and green are contrasting colors. It helps us remember Christmas. There's a reason why they look good together. They don't just contrast, they compliment each other. Next, use of lines and shapes. You can take advantage of the lines and shapes in your scene. Use them in proportion to your subject to lead the eye into the picture. Leading lines do not necessarily have to be straight. In fact, curved lines can be very attractive compositional features. I'll be placing wooden guy here. I'll be using the line of, I think this is called rails or whatever you call this. I'll be using the straight line that will lead to our wooden guy here. Let's see how it looks. Leading lines. Finally, negative space. Negative space defines and emphasizes the main subject of a photo, drawing your eye to it. It provides breathing room, giving your eyes somewhere to rest, and preventing your images from appearing too cluttered with stuff. All of this adds up to a more engaging composition. Composition is not limited to the ones I mentioned, but it should be enough to get you started. As you go along and take gazillion photos, you will discover more and probably discover your own and unique composition style. Just like Picasso said it, learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist. 6. Storytelling: Lesson 5, storytelling. Even smartphones can capture jaw dropping images using compelling stories. Here are ways you can tell stories through your photo. A single object or a single subject can tell a story of isolation, solitude, and loneliness. Styling your scene can support the story that you are trying to tell. Let's say just one glass of wine can tell a different story from three or more glasses of wine. You can tell stories through perspective. Low angle is like viewing the world through a child's eye. It can also make your subject look tall and powerful. High angles tell a contrasting story, it makes your subject look small and inferior. Earlier I showed you the rule of thirds with this guy raising his hand. Because we're trying to create a story of isolation, so I'm just changing his posture. He looks beaten, he looks sad. We're going to take a photo of that, it doesn't match with the background, so we'll change it. I'll try this way. That tells us a story of isolation, of sadness. The way we angle our camera, our lens, our smartphone, we tell a different perspective, we tell a different story. Let's say I'll be photographing a wooden guy here on this perspective. My camera is above our subject. He looks small. Let me just space him here, versus when I change my angle and I move down and take a low angle. Now it gives a sense of superiority. He looks big rather than earlier when I shot him on a high angle, he looks small, he looks inferior. As you can see from there, just by changing the angles, the way you take your photos, it brings out different story, different composition. So when you're out and about, when you're taking photos, feel free to move around to change your angle to really help you tell the story through your photos. Other storytelling concept that you can use are over the shoulder, point of view, subject versus the world, subject into the unknown. Carefully planning and composing your shots can help you tell a story, adding props and styling your scene. You are not limited to what you have and what you see. There are many ways to spice up your photos, by moving around you can get a better angle, by adding props and styling your scene. At the end of the day, whatever camera, whatever gear, a photo that tells a story wins. 7. The Technical: Camera setup and settings: Lesson 6, Camera Setup and Settings. Remember the rule of thirds composition? There is a powerful tool in your smartphone to help you capture photos in the rule of thirds. Make sure that the grid is turned on in the camera settings of your phone. If you're using an iPhone, turn off Live Photos. Avoid zooming in or touching your screen to zoom in. Zoom with your feet, meaning move closer to your subject when you want a more close-up shot. Zooming in greatly degrades the quality of your photos. Now, there are different ways to use your smartphone in photography. You can use the built-in camera or you can use a third party app. I will use both in this lesson. 8. Exposure: Lesson 7, Exposure. The amount of light hitting the camera sensor is also referred to as the exposure. Basically, the brightness of your image. You want to capture your photos in the best lighting possible. Avoid shooting at noon or direct sunlight because the lighting is harsh. Plus, it creates the raccoon eyes when photographing people. If you're indoors, you can avoid harsh light by using diffusers such as thin white curtains or blankets. When outside, it's best to use soft light when the clouds are blocking the sun or in golden hours. In cases when you can't adjust the amount of lighting in your scene, you can adjust the exposure on your phone. You can either increase or decrease. As you go along and practice, I am sure you will get the perfect balance. 9. Creating depth: Next is creating depth. You can do this by emphasizing your scene's depth by including interesting subjects at varying distance from the camera. On your smart phone, there should be an option to lock focus. No matter where you move, your camera knows where to focus. Try as much as possible to make your subject far from its background to create a nice depth of field. You can also use foreground, or intentionally add foreground to add more depth into your image. 10. Panorama, HDR and Macro: Wow, we have covered a lot. But wait, there is more. Your smartphone is not called a smartphone for nothing. Yes, your iPhone and your smartphone don't just have the ability to take stunning photos, you can also shoot a panorama, macro, and HDR. Now, let me just show you how we can use panorama, HDR and macro when shooting be your smartphone. HDR is a high dynamic range photo, meaning your camera takes three photos. One giving priority to highlights, midtones, and shadows, then combining it to give that nice contrast photo, plus it gives you more room in editing. Make sure to always have it on on your smartphone. For HDR, you have options to set it in the settings or the camera settings of your phone. You just go to settings, then camera, or you can set it when you open your camera. When you open your camera app, there should be an option there for HDR. Basically, HDR is high dynamic range. Your camera or your smartphone take three photos, technically. One giving priority to the highlights, to the midtones and to the shadows. When your camera or when your phone joins it together, it's a high dynamic range photo. It's very beneficial when you're editing or when you want that contrasty and crispy photo. Let me just take a normal photo so that I can show you what an HDR photo looks like versus a normal photo. Next is the panorama. This allows you to physically pan the camera from left to right, or tilt the camera upwards, down. With a camera capturing 180 or 360 degrees of panorama images and seamlessly stitches them together for you. I did it from left to right or from the side, you can also do it from top to bottom or bottom to top if you're photographing buildings or tall objects. Let's try that. Finally, you can take beautiful close-up or macro shots with your smartphone. Macro is getting really close to your subject. Our phones, our iPhones, our smartphones now have the ability to do that, to get really close to the subject and be able to take photos. Because when you use a normal phone, when you move close to the subject, it gets blurry, but most of our phones now can do that without getting blurry. Just place your camera close to your subject and voila. With a couple of editing and touch ups, you can create a stunning image straight out of your smartphone to your Instagram feed. I mentioned editing. In the next lesson, I will show you how you can edit and enhance your photos using a free editing software. 11. How to edit or enhance your photos and create presets: Lesson number 10, how to edit or enhance your photos and create presets. Editing your photos is not cheating, it is simply enhancing your creation. It is part of the creative process. There are a lot of unknown things during a photoshoot. I encourage taking photos with the best light and composition possible and that you get it right as much as possible, straight out of the phone or camera. When it's time to edit your photos, it will be just minimal and subtle. You may use whatever editing software you like, something that you're more comfortable with. But I highly recommend Adobe Lightroom for mobile. A free mobile version is available in Play Store and App Store. We are now on Lightroom for mobile. First we need to select the photo that we want to edit. This is a macro photo of a flower that we shot earlier. When you are editing photos, the first thing to do is to make sure that the crop is correct. If you will be uploading it using Instagram or Facebook, the best crop is four by five or a square and then you just adjust your photo to make sure that the composition, or it's in the best composition possible. This is great for me. We're done with the crop. Next, we want to adjust the exposure using the Light tab. This is how bright or how dark your photo. For this one, I just want to make it a bit brighter and then I want to add contrast. Make sure you don't overdo your contrast and of course, all of the tabs and the adjustments, make it as subtle as possible. Now for me, I do it with almost all my photos. I decrease the highlights and adjust the shadows so that it could bring back those details. That's gone when there's too much highlight or there's too much shadow. So you can do that here and then just compensate it with the whites and the blacks. Just from this changes you will see how it's different from the original photo. But we're not yet done. Next is to adjust the color. As you can see, just with Lightroom mobile, it's a free application, a free editing software. You can edit all of these things and then you can also adjust the temperature. If you want your photo to look warm, you can do that here or if you want it to look cool. For this photo, I wanted to look a bit warm. So just adding maybe plus four. I don't want to touch the tint, but let me show you the effect of adjusting the tint so it will look green or purple or magenta. Next, I want to adjust or I want to add vibrance to my photo. The good thing with vibrance is it's like a smart adjustment. Vibrance adjusts the colors that needs adjustment on your photo and like saturation, it strengthens all of the colors in your photo and I really don't want that. That doesn't look pleasant. There is actually a better way to adjust the saturation on your photo. When you go up here, this is a very good feature, one of my favorites. When you go to Mix, you can adjust the colors individually on your photo. Let's say, the purple. If I want to adjust the saturation of the purple, I can do that here. As you can see, I move the slider and it's the purple color that is changing. I just want to add a little bit of purple, I just want to saturate it a bit. I want to do the same thing with the leaves. I want to saturate it, just a bit, to make it look vivid and colorful. As you can see, the middle of the flower has a pale yellow color on it, so I'm adjusting the saturation to make it more yellow because yellow contrasts with purple, so I love the combination. I'm saturating it all the way up to 69 so that you can see that really colorful yellow color in there. I'm happy with those color adjustments. Next, the effects. You can add texture, but make sure you don't overdo it because as you can see, that's what happens when you do that. So just a bit, maybe just 30 plus. Then clarity, as you can see that's what happens when you adjust the clarity all the way up. We want to, just a little bit. When you adjust the clarity, it also makes your photo dark or it can look darker so just make sure you don't go overboard with this too. I don't want to use the dehaze because there's no haze on my photo. I usually adjust it if I'm photographing landscape or the sky, anything that has haze on it. Yes, I want to add vignette because I want my audience to just focus on the flower in the middle. You can use the vignetting or the vignette to add blacks or whites on the corners of your photo and I'm happy with that. I don't really add grain to my photos. Some photos, they look nice, but I don't use it that much. You can also adjust the sharpening. You can add a bit of sharpness. You can do color noise reduction on the Detail tab. Next in the Optics, you can adjust or you can correct the lens. We have different lens for different phones. Adobe Lightroom adjusts or corrects that for you and if there are chromatic aberration or incorrect colors at the edges of the details of your photo, you can remove that through turning on the Remove Chromatic Aberration. Basically that is it. If you want to make a preset of these settings, because as you can see, this is our before and after. Let's say you took a lot of photo with the same exposure, the same subject, just different angles, you can actually make a preset. There you go. Just click on the three dots at the top and then click on "Create Preset" and you just put a title on it. For this one I'll just say Purple flower and then okay. If say, I have other photos with the same exposure, with the same subject, I can just go to User Presets and select Purple flower and it will apply all the changes or all the adjustments that I made for this photo to other photos that I took with the same subject and exposure. That's it. That's our before and after photos. 12. How to properly export your photos: Next, what if you want to upload it on Instagram and Facebook and you don't want this social media platforms to degrade the quality of your photo? The way to do that, is to export your photos properly. You click on the "Share" icon there at the top, and then you click on "Export as" and for Facebook, so make sure that the file type is on JPG or JPEG. They mentioned should be small, 2048 pixels for Facebook, image quality is 80 percent. I don't usually include watermark, but of course, you can feel free to do so. More options. For our file naming, it stays on original, or if you want to add a custom name that's up to you. Outputs sharpening is screened because this will be viewed on screen, on mobile phone, on a laptop. Screen will be the output sharpening amount is just standard and color space is sRGB. That's it for our Facebook exports. I click on the "Check" icon and my device is almost full. The same thing for Instagram, just press on the "Share" icon "Export as," and then for Instagram it will be custom 1080, and then image quality is 70, and then the same settings. This export settings will be attached to this course. You can follow them whenever you upload or you export photos that you will upload on Instagram and Facebook. 13. Sharing your work: Sharing your work. Never ever think that there are already a lot of photographers out there. You are unique, you are you, and you are exactly who the world needs. Don't be afraid to share your work and ask for feedback. That is how we improve and get better. If your photo is beautiful in your perspective, then it is. Use others' feedback as a tool to improve, not a standard to sabotage your progress and creative process. The secret to photography and learning any skill is practice, execution, and a lot of practice. With that, don't forget to upload your photos in the project section. I'd love to see them and give them a thumbs up. Participating in the class project is also a good way to interact with fellow students and artists, so go for it. You will be surprised what adventures lie ahead if you don't give up. That is it for our Smartphone Photography class. If you find this class helpful, feel free to leave a review. This will help in my credibility and this will help other students to find this class. If you are interested to learn more of my classes, just click on my name and check on my other classes. See you there. Bye.