3 tips to improve your phone photography.

A few tips to improve your phone photography.

First, when you open up your camera to take a picture, a little box lights up.  That’s where the camera chooses to focus AND how it sets your exposure.

If you touch somewhere on the screen, that box moves and that is where the camera focus’s and sets its exposure.


In the picture below, I touched the screen on the phone where my daughter was standing.  In the middle of her body.  So the camera exposed for HER.

In the picture below, I touched the screen on the phone where the window is.  Up on the waves of the ocean. So the camera exposed for the WAVES outside in the bright sun (and underexposed everything inside)

Here I touched the screen on the phone where the sun was.  So it exposed for the bright sun and left my kids dark.

And here I touched the screen on my phone where my kids were standing.  So it exposed for the kids and over-exposed the setting sun (which is why it’s so bright and you can’t even see the sun setting).  But you can see the surfers which were so fun to watch.

Another tip.  The camera on the back of your phone (the one intended for taking photos) has MORE megapixels than the forward facing camera on your phone (the one intended for facetime).  So when you take “selfies” or pictures with your kids where the phone is facing you, they will be lower quality (so you can’t print them as big) than they would be if you took them with the camera on the back of the phone.  So whenever possible, use the camera on the back of the phone.

And the last tip.  You can use the volume control on headphones to act as a remote for your camera.  Plug the headphones in and press the + or – button on the headphones and it will take a picture.  No more gumby arms.

And.  A bonus tip.  If you get the Camera + app, it has a timer option so the mom can stay in the picture!

For some tips on improving your photography in general, check out this post.

Enthusiastic about Life

A man I had just met for the first time told me I was “enthusiastic about life”.

He was right.  I am, most of the time.

And thankfully, Mya seems to have inherited my enthusiasm for life and put it on steroids.  This girl LOVES life.  She smiles as though her face may burst.  She takes her sweet time in everything she does (which can sometimes be maddening, but usually reminds me to slow the heck down). 

She does her own thing and doesn’t need other people to validate her.  She takes things as they come.  Care-free.  Kind.  Full of laughter.

She tells stories better than anyone I know.

And she makes the best faces.

Man, I love her.  My “enthusiastic about life” buddy!

Photography Sessions

Although I am making some transitions in my business and spending more time on this blog as well as the photography classes I offer, I will still be offering very limited photography sessions throughout the year.

To see more information on types of session I offer and samples of images, you can click the links below.




I offer sports photography upon request.

I no longer do weddings.  

Please e-mail me if you have any questions or you want to book a session.  

[email protected]

Where should I print my pictures?

I get asked this question alot.

My answer: It depends on what you’re using the pictures for.

I know most professional photographers will say to only get your photos printed at a professional lab. The only time I disagree with this, is based on your answer to the question, “What are you using the pictures for?”

If I am printing pictures 5×7 or smaller and they are intended for an album, like Project Life, I print my photos at Costco.

I did a test print of several different photos at four different printing labs: Costco, Walmart, Walgreens, and a professional lab. The photos at Walgreens turned out a little green because I forgot to uncheck the “auto-correct” button on their site (I always recommend turning OFF the auto-correct). The quality of the 4 different places was comparable but the coloring and “brightness” of each photo varied a bit. The key is to do a test print first and make sure you like the “look” of the printers there. It’s hard to see a comparison accurately over a computer screen since all monitors show colors differently. But this gives you an idea of how the photos can look a little different from place to place. Some people who are looking to decorate their homes might look into getting printed wall art to had that extra bit of art to their walls. If you are interested in finding out more about about getting your photo printed on acrylic to add your wall art, there are some companies out there that could help you to achieve this method.
Keep in mind when printing anywhere, what you see on your screen isn’t necessarily what you get from the printer (unless your monitor is calibrated to that specific printer). I have learned that Costco prints tend to be a little “dark”. So before I send them to Costco I lighten them up a little (bump up the exposure) through some editing software. All of the photos in this wall collage I did are from Costco.

OR I print my 4×6 photos at York Photo online. If you google “free 4×6 prints” a code for 100 free prints to york photo should pop up. You can use that the first time you order prints from them. They also have sales on their prints all the time so I have a folder on my desktop with pictures I want to print and I wait until there is a sale and then send a batch of those pictures in to be printed.

If I am printing bigger than 5×7 or printing anything large that will be hung on my walls, I use Pixels Foto and Frame (for the Utah readers, it’s on 90th S. and State Street in Sandy) or Persnickety Prints (in Orem, Utah)–Persnickety also ships for a flat rate and their customer service is unbeatable. Online I use Persnickety Prints or Mpix. These are all professional printing labs with affordable prices.

I use Persnickety for regular prints (they’ll do custom sizes which I love to do) and I also use them for matboard prints like this one:

Mpix has a bunch of novelty photo items like calendars and photo books and cards along with regular prints. I also use them for printing stickers and business cards.


Any photos I print I use a matte or lustre finish instead of glossy. Makes them look better in my opinion.


If you have never printed somewhere before and don’t know what the prints will end up looking like, just send a few photos to be printed. Then if you like how they look, you can send a bigger batch for prints.


I have been using Persnickety Prints the most lately. They do printing for Instagram pics (square photos) as well as Project Life album sizes (3×4’s). I also love their polaroid type prints and various sizes of square prints. They specialize in 12×12 prints (that work great with the Project Life app) and they make 5×5 mini photo books that work perfect with Instagram prints or as a custom book.


For some ideas on an incredibly easy way to document your family story, check out the Project Life App. It’s “scrapbook” cheating in the palm of your hand.


And for ideas on how to display photos in your home, you can check out several ideas of Wall Displays using photos here. And for even more, you can follow my Pinterest board “Photo display ideas”.

Sibling love

I am constantly grateful these two boys have each other.  To play with.  To love.  To wrestle.  To terrorize.  To just BE together.  What a life-long blessing to have a sibling to grow up with and be an integral part of your life story.  Though we didn’t plan to have them so close together, I am thankful it worked out the way it did.  Caleb adores his older brother and I hope it always stays that way.  And Carter refuses to sit by Caleb at meal time because he’s “too messy”.

They keep me oh-so-busy.  And I’m already dreading the day they both go to school and I’ll be buddy-less during the day.  Boo.  Double Boo.

Boys, you’re lucky to have each other.  Don’t ever forget that.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...