Making amazing photos of your family and friends is one of the biggest advantages of having an iPhone with a dual rear camera. These Apple models allow you to take pictures in portrait mode thanks to the combination of two cameras, one of which captures the normal image, while the other captures the zoom image without loss of quality. The result is a much closer picture of professional cameras than a traditional single rear camera. This technology allows you to create an artistic depth effect, where the main subject is in focus, and the background is erased. Here are the best tips to get the most out of portrait mode on the iPhone.
If you use portrait mode in conjunction with the new lighting effects on iOS 11, you can get “studio-quality” photos (Apple warrants this information).
Which iPhones can take pictures in portrait mode?
Portrait Mode is an artistic photo format that first appeared on iPhone 7 Plus. Among the devices that make use of this mode is the iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X.
iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, and iPhone 8 can not register photos in portrait mode because they do not have a rear double lens camera.
Taking Pictures in Portrait Mode
Now that you know what Portrait Mode is and what iPhones have the effect, the next thing to know is where Portrait Mode is on iPhone and how you can use it to take amazing pictures.
- Open the camera app on your iPhone by tapping the app icon or swiping your finger to the left of the lock screen.
- You will see the list of modes below the display. These include Time-Lapse, Slow Motion, Video, Photo, Portrait, Square and Panorama. Select Portrait. When this mode is selected, the word Portrait will turn yellow.
- Ideally, you should be positioned less than two and a half meters from the object. Do not be too far away. You’ll see a warning saying “Get Away”, which should help you find the best distance to take your picture. Adjust your position as needed. If you are too close or too far away, you can take a photo, but it may not look so good.
- If the lighting conditions are not optimal, you may also see the following warning: “Requires more light”. You can activate the flash by touching the icon in the upper left corner.
- There is also a timer, great if you are using a selfie stick. If you touch the clock icon at the top, you will have the option of 3s or 10s (which is a three or ten-second timer). Select the delay, press the white shutter button and wait for the picture to be taken.
- You can also apply preset filters before taking the picture. To do this, tap the three overlapping circles in the upper right corner. Note that you can combine filters with portrait lighting effects. You can not use both at the same time.
- Now, hold the iPhone at the ideal object distance, frame the photo, and touch the white shutter button (or one of the volumes controls that have the same effect) to take your picture.
- Once you’ve taken the photo, you can open it in the Photos application and edit it.
Portrait Mode Tips
Portrait Mode is an artistic effect of the camera, and you can experience all your creativity with it. But there are some rules to follow.
You need the subject of the photo to be very close. The feature itself recommends 2.5 meters or less. The scenario, on the other hand, needs to be significantly more distant: the greater the distance between the subject and the background, the more pronounced the depth effect. If your main subject is standing against a wall, there will be almost no effect.
Lighting is important as well. We find the light effect in artificial light indoors. Early in the morning, the results are great.
Be aware of small items in the background that can confuse or disrupt the depth effect. Bet on simple compositions for best results, and try to avoid scattered items that might confuse the effect, especially in front of your subject. Even loose hair strands can confuse the feature, though it is probably not noticeable.
How to use portrait lighting – iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X
If you are using portrait mode on iPhone 8 Plus or X, there are some additional lighting filters to consider. These are collectively known as Portrait Lighting, a feature that produces good results with very little effort.
Here’s how to add the portrait lighting effect to your photo
- Open the Photos app and find the photo you want to edit with the portrait lighting effects. You can only add these effects to pictures taken with Portrait Mode. You will find all your pictures in the Portrait folder.
- Touch Edit.
- Touch the hexagon at the bottom of the photo.
- Swipe to cycle through the 5 options.
- You can tap on each effect to see how it will transform your photo.
- When the optimal effect for your photo is chosen, touch Done and wait for the photo to be saved.
- If you later decide that you did not like the effect you chose, touch Edit again and touch Revert, or choose another portrait lighting effect.
- Note that you can not combine this filter with the other filter types. So if you touch the three overlapping circles and choose one of them, the lighting effect will be lost.
The 5 lighting effects
The default setting is called Natural Light, which delivers the photo as the intended nature.
The second is Studio Light, which illuminates the highlights and, under the right conditions, can result in photos that appear to have been taken in a studio.
The third mode is the Contour Light that adds depth and shadow to the low lights of your subject to improve the setting. It may result in the appearance of shadows.
There are two more modes, and both work by cutting off the subject and placing them against a dark background as if they were under dramatic stage lighting. The first is Stage Light, be careful because it can ruin the clipping process.
Finally, we have Mono Stage Light, which is the same Stage Light, but in black and white.