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Jack Brundige Jack Brundige
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Summer photo fun on your smartphone

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Summer is here, and with it comes great photo opportunities for family and friends. From vacations to just relaxing in the backyard, smartphones make it simple and easy to capture those memories you'll want to keep forever.

Taking great photos on any smartphone is easy if you follow these basic tips:

  • Rule of thirds: You don't need to be a trained photographer using professional equipment to capture great photos simply fill your frame with this rule in mind. The rule of thirds suggests that you create more impact when main subjects aren't centered but instead are positioned in the right, left, top or bottom third of the photo.
  • Be mindful of backdrops: While the rule of thirds is an excellent one to follow, make sure that accent subjects don't appear cluttered in the background. For example, power lines and streetlights can distract the eye from the photo's subject.
  • Full-body zoom: The zoom function on smartphones enlarges pixels instead of subjects, which can leave pictures grainy. Physically moving closer to subjects will produce a higher-quality photo.
  • Floating objects: Pictures taken using sunlight will reflect everything especially the piece of lint from your pocket or purse. Before snapping a photo, remember to wipe the camera lens clean.
  • Easy accessibility: Smartphone camera-capability means one fewer item to pack. Set the camera widget to your phone's home screen so you can easily capture moments as they are happening.

Once you get all your shots, the latest photo apps can turn your pictures into instant fun:

Instagram is a fun way to transform your pictures into works of art to easily share with friends and family. The app provides filtered effects and brings out details to make your smartphone pictures look even better.

Pocket Photo Booth is free to download and instantly transforms a series of pictures into strips produced by traditional photo booths. Using the dual cameras on a tablet device like the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, you can take photos of yourself and see an on-screen preview.

Photo Warp is perfect for occupying and entertaining kids during long drives for that summer vacation. Simply use the touch screen to expand, shrink and rotate the pixels, giving photo subjects hilarious features.

Jack Brundige is director of sales for U.S. Cellular in New England.


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