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Mobile Photo & Video Resources

There are always incredible stories playing out in the lives of students at LeTourneau University, and at times you may find yourself in a situation of needing to capture that story's visual representation through photos & videos using your mobile phone. Through both a video walkthrough and written summary guide, this two-part toolbox resource is designed to equip you with some basic principles for maximizing the power of your smartphone to take great photos and videos as well as think about the story you want to tell before you ever open your camera app!

Tips to Succeed with Mobile Photos & Videos

Element 1: Lens Check

  • Is your lens free of dust and debris? Visually check before each shot to make sure things come out clear.
  • Clean your lenses before each use with a microfiber cloth.

Element 2: Exposure

  • How well lit is your subject? Visually check before each shot.
  • Most modern phones have a brightness slider to help. It’s better to use this than to trust the camera’s automatic setting.

Element 3: Focus

  • Most phones allow you to tap to focus. Do this before every shot!
  • Focus is even more important for video; keep tapping to focus throughout the video to make sure things *stay* in focus, especially when there is movement.

Element 4: Distance from Subject

  • Photos and videos look more interesting when your subject is closer to the camera./
  • The background becomes softer and the detail of what’s in the foreground is enhanced by greater contrast.

Element 5: Stability & Positioning

  • It’s important to hold your camera steady for photos as well as videos to make sure they turn out sharp.
  • Consider locking your elbows to your torso for greater stability.
  • It can be helpful to take both landscape and portrait versions of photos and videos to have greater flexibility later on.
  • In general, horizontal is the standard for normal videos, while vertical is the standard for social media videos.

Element 6: Phone-Specific Features

  • Know the features of your specific phone so you can maximize your ability to capture great photos and videos! Some examples include:
  • Special zoom options for cameras with multiple lenses
  • Night mode for better performance in poor lighting conditions
  • Portrait mode for a more stylized look
  • Use these features sparingly and consider taking normal photos & videos that do not use these special features as well, just in case.

Element 7: Audio for Video

  • Try to film videos in a quiet environment when possible.
  • Look into whether your phone can support an external microphone to increase audio quality.

Wrapping Up

  • Remember, the content is the story. Photos and videos are visual representations of that story.
  • Remember to identify the story behind the visual before you pull out your phone to help you think through the best way to represent that story through photo & video.
  • Remember that you can send photos & videos to the marketing team from the Opportunities & Requests toolbox page!