One of the best parts of photography is being able to capture something beautiful or interesting no matter where you go. As a photographer, you’ve probably already got an eye for such things. You know you can bring an autumn tree line to life, or make a steaming cup of coffee look like a work of art.
But, let’s be honest. It’s not always easy to lug around your camera bag, tripod, and all of the accessories you might need to capture a professional photo at any given moment.
That doesn’t mean you need to give up on taking the perfect picture, even when you’re on the go. Creativity is all part of the game, right? So, by using some of the tools and skills you already have, and making a few upgrades to your “on-the-go” gear, you can capture that perfect shot no matter where you are or what you’re doing, and offer a unique perspective of something extraordinary that you wouldn’t have been able to shoot otherwise.
With that in mind, let’s look at a few ways you can take better pictures on the go with a little bit of know-how and the right equipment.
[Related Reading: What Is The Best Camera for Travel Photography?]
Have Phone, Will Travel
Whether you’re a nature photographer or you tend to stick to portraits, there are some standard pieces of gear that almost every photog has with them in their bag, including:
- Spare batteries
- Memory SD cards
But, if you’re traveling a lot or you’re going to be lugging around your bag all day, it can get tiring and frustrating, all at once. Even if you have a smaller camera or a newer mirrorless camera that is absolutely awesome for outdoor shooting, it’s never fun to have to carry around a lot of equipment all day.
Thankfully, if you’re a professional photographer with a smartphone, there’s a good chance you can still get some amazing shots and not have to carry around a bunch of gear.
Now, we’re not suggesting you show up to a wedding photography session with your iPhone and nothing else. But, if you’re just taking photos on your own time or you’re trying to establish yourself as a nature/landscape/or even a still-life photographer, your phone can go a long way in creating professional-looking pictures.
Smartphone camera quality is constantly upgrading. And, you can use some of your existing photography skills to make smartphone pictures look even better. Most of the time, the same principles apply that you would use in all of your professional photos. These include minding the rule of thirds, utilizing lighting, and getting to know the camera on your phone. It has more features than you might think, and there are ways to customize your settings, rather than just pointing and shooting.
Of course, there are items you can add to your gear list that can make your smartphone photography hit the next level. Phone camera lenses are a great way to offer “fake out” photos that look like they were taken on a DSLR. From multi-lenses to macro options, phone camera lenses typically clip on in a matter of seconds and can change the entire look of your photo.
Editing Tools You Can Use Anywhere
One of the best ways to take on-the-go photos to the next level is by using the right editing software. If you captured the perfect shot, you can really bring it to life quickly with presets in Lightroom mobile. Having Lightroom on your phone will make your life easier, in general, but editing your photo and saving a present will leave you with an arsenal that you can use to edit a picture in a matter of minutes and share it with the world.
If you’re just getting started as a photographer and you’re trying to save money, using what you already have instead of investing in a bunch of gear can be a big help. Thankfully, you can essentially create a studio almost anywhere with a little bit of know-how and a few key steps, including:
- Turning off ambient lights
- Closing curtains of the room you’re in
- Using sheer curtains (when you have them on hand)
- Choosing a simple backdrop
- Adding a fill light
This setup makes it easy to take professional-looking photos no matter where you are, and it doesn’t require a lot of time, setup, or money. Once you’ve mastered the basics on Lightroom mobile, you can edit your photos quickly, and see who can guess the difference between your smartphone photos and traditional DSLR captures!
Building an “On-the-Go” Brand for Yourself
The number of professional photographers in the U.S. has been consistently on the rise over the last few years. Cameras have become more accessible and affordable, and editing options have become more user-friendly. Because of that, there are about 120,000 people across the country who consider themselves to be photographers.
Whether you’re a freelance photographer or you work for a larger company, it’s important to be able to stand out and find your ‘voice’ among the thousands of other people taking professional photos. One way you can do that is by building your brand on something unique; like photography on the go.
A personal brand helps to:
- Build credibility
- Create connections
- Open opportunities
If you’re always on the go and you are using the right equipment and editing tools to master your photography, you can make a name for yourself because of it. You can indeed dazzle people with smartphone photography if you know how to do it the right way. Because millions of people across the globe have the same device in their hands, showing them what you can do with yours can help them to feel more connected to you, so they might be more likely to follow you on social media, purchase prints, or even hire you for an event.
You don’t need a lot of bulky gear (or even expensive gear) to be an incredible on-the-go photographer. You just need the right knowledge, the right resources, and a creative eye.