iPhone Photography Tips: How to Shoot an Overhead Picture

One of my favorite features of the iPhone is the Camera, as well as the Photos app. Before purchasing my first iPhone I didn't take too many photographs at all; it was just too inconvenient to tote around a camera and then upload the photos to my desktop. Now that I've had an iPhone for several years, it's time to learn some photography tips so I can fully utilize my smartphone to take great pictures, or at least good ones! But how to take good pictures on my iPhone when I've never been much of a photographer? Luckily Apple shares lots of photography tips and tricks, and here's one I want to pass on to you; how to take an overhead shot on your iPhone. Let's get started! 

Related: How to Use the Self-Timer on Your iPhone's Camera

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Overhead photography is excellent for taking shots of items where you want to show maximum detail. Food photography, of course, but also snapshots of drawings or even another photo where you'd like to preserve the perspective of the original artist. Believe it or not, your first step to taking a great overhead pics is not opening the Camera app, that comes later. First, you'll need to:

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  • Open Settings.
  • Scroll down and tap on Camera.

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  • Toggle on Grid.

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Now you can start thinking about the lighting for your shot. One important tip is to avoid overhead lighting as it will cast the shadow of your hand and camera into your shot.

  • Open the Camera app.
  • Get your subject into view.

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  • Slightly move and tilt your iPhone until the two plus symbols on your display line up and turn yellow, this indicates that your iPhone is level.
  • I've found it helps to keep your elbows by your sides and your feet braced apart for stability. Also, slowly releasing your breath before you take your photo seems to prevent wiggling. Tap the shutter release button to snap your picture when you're ready. 

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Don't be afraid to take many photos, so you have lots to choose from; you can always delete the ones that didn't work out well!

Top image credit: Bangprikphoto / Shutterstock.com

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Leanne Hays's picture

Leanne Hays is a Feature Web Writer at iPhone Life.  She loves reading and blogging, and is never without a book in her backpack or an audiobook on her phone. Short-term goals include finishing painting her house and starting an aquaponics farm, long-term goals include a bike tour of Italy and writing a novel.