CLEAN LENS First things first: make sure your lens is clean. Check the inside and outside of the HITCASE lens, as well as the inside of the your iPhone lens. This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s amazing how often we forget to do this. There is nothing worse than reviewing your epic footage only to discover a smudge on the lens ruined all of your shots. Use a microfiber cloth to clean your lens. Don’t use your clothes; (chances are) they are filthy and will scratch your lens. If you are on the lake and there is a big water droplet on your lens, the best way to clean it off is to dunk your (HITCASE PROonly) camera in the water and give it a good shake. We know it sounds counter-intuitive, but trust us – it works.
Touch the screen on the area you want in focus and properly exposed.
FOCUS AND EXPOSURE When shooting, the tip of your finger is magic. Touch different areas of the screen and observe how your iPhone adjusts focus and exposure accordingly. A yellow box appears on your screen over the area that you touch. Notice the sun icon beside the box. You can swipe the sun up or down to adjust the exposure. Always make sure your camera is focussed on the desired subject and exposed properly. If you are wearing sunglasses or goggles, it’s best to take them off while setting focus and exposure — especially if they are polarized. Lock down your Focus and Exposure by holding your finger on the desired area of the screen. Count to three and AE/AF Lock will appear. Notice that the sun icon pops up again. You can swipe it up or down to adjust the exposure; it will stay locked in as youset it. This is really handy if you are shooting video or a sequence of photos, or if you are shooting in an area where the lighting is constantly changing (e.g., a wooded trail).
When taking photos and videos underwater, using the volume buttons to release the shutter is a necessity. Manatee photo by @ambertorrealba
SWIPE UP, OPEN CAMERA Never miss a shot! When the action suddenly happens you won’t have time to type in your passcode and open the camera app. Instead: 1. Click your home button to activate your screen. 2. Swipe up the camera icon located on the bottom left corner of your screen. 3. Boom! Your camera app is open. Get the shot.
SHUTTER RELEASE Volume Buttons: Our favorite way to release the camera’s shutter is by pushing the volume but- tons; either one works. They are in a convenient location for your finger and the tactile feedback is a necessity when shooting underwater. Apple Headphones: Remember those white Apple headphones you got when you bought your iPhone? They also have volume buttons, and they release the camera’s shutter as well. This is a great feature for taking sneaky photos or videos. We also like to use the headphones when we have our HITCASE mounted on a tripod with TiltR. Your headphone cable acts as a remote shutter release and eliminates camera shake.
COMPOSITION is the key to getting your HITCASE images noticed. Any dummy can point and shoot, but it takes a skilled photographer to compose a shot that’s visually appealing and holds the viewer’s attention.
THE GRID The Grid is one of the most useful photography tools on the iPhone. It’s great for applying the Rule of Thirds, keeping the horizon straight and it reminding you to think about composition when taking a photo.
Your camera with The Grid enabled looks like this.
RULE OF THIRDS To Enable the Grid…
1. Open the Settings App.
2. Select Photos & Camera.
3. Scroll down and under the Camera heading is the option for Grid.
4. Enable the Grid by tapping the slider. Green means go!
The Rule of Thirds (which is really just a guideline) is about where you position the main elements of a scene. Open your camera with the Grid enabled. You will see an overlay of four lines: two horizontal and two vertical. The Rule suggests that the most powerful areas of the image are the four points where the lines intersect, and that our eyes are naturally drawn to these areas first. To make your main subject stand out, position it at one of these intersections.When shooting a landscape, align the horizon line with one of the two horizontal grid lines.This is a good example of the Rule of Thirds in action.
SHOOT FROM UNIQUE ANGLES Rather than taking pictures from eye level, try using the ShootR pole to shoot from really low or really high. This technique can help simplify the composition and also gives a unique viewpoint people don’t usually see.
This was taken using the ShootR pole to get a unique angle from above. Image courtesy of @seanpettit_
LEAVE SPACE FOR MOVEMENT When you look at a photo of someone skiing or jumping off a cliff, your eye tends to look ahead and follow the direction in which they are moving. So when you are taking a shot leave enough space inside the frame for the eye to follow that movement. This generally means leaving more space in front of them than behind them, (unless of course they are skiing backwards). You can also apply this when shooting portraits – naturally your eye tends to follw the person’s gaze, so leave more space in front of them than behind them to give them space to look into.
FRAME YOUR SUBJECT Use foreground objects to create a “frame” around the main subject. Tree branches, archways, win- dows and cave entrances make perfect frames. This naturally draws the eye to your main subject and creates a more visually compelling image. Your eye follows the riders path to the landing. This was taken using the ShootR pole to get a unique angle from above.
BREAK THE RULES Photography is art and no one can tell you how to express yourself