Most of us carry a smartphone with us everywhere these days, so it's important to know how to use your smartphone camera to take great photos! I've only had a smartphone for a couple years, and I've loved having a decent camera to document things I'm doing or take quick photos to remember something I've seen that I want to recreate.
I still favor using an actual camera for my instructables, but I do like to use my iPhone's camera to take nice photos of my embroideries to share on Instagram and to post items on Etsy. :)
I'll be focusing mainly on iPhone photography tips since that's the smartphone I own, but many of these tips can be used for Android devices as well. :D
If you're more interesting in learning to edit your iPhone photos, check out my basic photo editing instructable.
(P.S. Did you know that iPhones are the most popular camera on flickr? Pretty nuts! If you keep clicking you can see tons of examples of amazing iPhone photography and lots of terrible selfies.)
Jun3 2016 update: as of right now I only use the A Color Story app! It's 100% amazing and worth the money. It's available for iPhone and soon to be on Android!
For the majority of my iPhone photography, I use three apps:
Camera+ has replaced the normal camera app for me - it has more options, including an image stabilization feature that's currently missing for the default camera app on iPhone 4S/5C. It has loads of options to enhance your photos, but it's also just fine to use it without making any adjustments.
Afterlight is great for tweaking photos! I use it for cropping, adjusting brightness and colors, and also for adding frames. The app also has a fantastic set of filters that are actually useable - they don't make the photos grainy and strange like Instagram does.
Instasize is a great way to post full photos to Instagram and social media without cropping them into a square. So many times I take photos and love the way they look and I don't want to butcher them by cropping - and this is a perfect solution! As an added bonus, you can choose the color of the borders around your photo, but I tend to stick with white. :)
Free (and awesome!) photo editors:
Pixlr and Photoshop Express are capable of creating very pretty and well edited photos. I haven't noticed any issues with pixelation when the images are blown up. :D
Litely is not as full featured, but it's lovely for adding a bit of mood and polish to portraits - it's essentially just a collection of really beautiful film-style filters.
If you want to add text to your photos, I recommend using one of these apps:
The one major drawback here is that most text editing apps default to square cropping and/or can be a little clunky to use.
A Beautiful Mess also has a hard time processing edited photos - I find that when I blow the image up it's quite pixelated. But if you're just using it for Instagram, it might work just fine for you!
Typic+ also has a free version with less options if you want to give it a go before you buy. :)