Seven Photo Tips to Capture the Picture-Perfect Valentine’s Day

05 Feb, 2014

Camera lens

No matter your Valentine’s Day plans, make sure you don’t forget to bring your camera (or smart phone) along to snap pictures of the night. To make sure you capture the most picture-perfect moments, check out our list of seven photo tips:

1.  Adjust the aperture. If you are using a camera where the aperture can be adjusted, make it as wide as possible so the subject you are photographing is in focus but the rest of the image is blurred. It sounds counterintuitive, but you can make the aperture wider by decreasing the f-stop value on your camera.

2.  Raise the ISO. While many may be hesitant to raise their ISO out of fear of a grainy picture, when capturing pictures in low light (like at a dimly lit restaurant, for example), it can help make the image “pop” and add some light to the photo. Plus, by raising your ISO, you won’t have to manually brighten the photo later.

3.  Increase shutter speed. To ensure your Valentine’s Day pictures are crystal clear, increase your camera’s shutter speed. You will be able to snap photos without worrying about shaky hands making the image blurry.

4.  Choose your Instagram filter wisely. For those who will be snapping pictures with a smart phone, here are some of our favorite Instagram filters to use for Valentine’s Day:

  • X-Pro II – Use this filter to achieve a highly contrasted, colorful photo. It can make your Valentine’s Day couples photo really pop.
  • Sierra – While this filter should be avoided on pictures of people since it can wash out skin tones, it’s perfect to add a fuzzy, dreamy quality to a landscape or still life (like those roses you just received).
  • Hefe – Add simple vibrancy to your photos with Hefe. This filter can often replace the need to adjust contrast or brightness in a photo editor.
  • Earlybird – Use this filter for photos taken in low lighting – it instantly brightens the image and adds an aged, sun-drenched look.
  • Inkwell – For a classic black-and-white image, use Inkwell. You will instantly make a simple portrait look elegant with this filter.

5.  Lock exposure and focus on your iPhone. Before taking a photo on your iPhone, try this simple trick. Tap and hold on your screen over the part of the image you would like to focus on, then release your finger so your phone goes to “AE/AF Lock.” This will ensure your iPhone’s camera will continue to focus on the subject you selected, even if you move the camera.

6.  Use your flash the right way. You don’t want to look like a ghost in your Valentine’s Day photos, so use your camera’s flash function only when absolutely necessary. If/when you use the flash, take a few steps back to avoid washing out the subject in your photo.

7.  Remember the rule of thirds. When capturing photos, follow this helpful guideline: divide the composition of the potential photo with three horizontal lines (evenly spaced apart), then imagine two vertical lines evenly spread apart that intersect the horizontal lines for a total of nine squares. Important elements of your photo should be near (or on) these lines and their points of intersection.

Do you have any tips for snapping the perfect Valentine’s Day photo?

Sources and additional photo tips:

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