iPhone Photography For Hunters

iPhone Photography For Hunters

iPhone photography for hunters looks a little different. After all, we’ve got dead animals in most every frame! Even still, just a little bit of insight can help you capture trophy iPhone photography that lasts a lifetime. In the end, that’s what a picture is: a lifetime of stories, strung together, telling your story to your family that comes after you.  You can take world class shots with an iPhone these days. There’s never been a time in the history of iPhone photography, or any smartphone for that matter, when capture memories is as easy as it is today.  This is a shot I was took to showcase Banded’s 900D tote strap. Banded makes incredibly solid gear, and that was the feature purpose of this photo.  What makes this photo creative is that I intentionally shot into the sun; which is normally not wise to do. However, if you know the rules, then you know when to break them. I used the tree to “block” the majority of the sun, which gives the photo a blurred background by partially blocking sun as an effect.  Use blockers to block light, and you can create some cool images in the field.  (click image for larger view)   Other Strengths Of This Photo:  Image isn’t too wide. The green heads in the tote are enough to let a hunter know we stomped the ducks that day. No need to show the ducks full body. Photo use the Rule Of Thirds and thus brings in the entire landscape. This article is part of a series called Better Field Photos. It’s a series of quick tips for the...
Apps I Use In The Field

Apps I Use In The Field

Today’s technology has made every hunt carry the possibility of a story. When filming a hunt people often ask me what apps for hunting work best in terms of photography. During hunting season one of my videos or articles will be scheduled to post that very day with Sportsman Channel, and I need to post a photo to let my followers know it’s up. It’s not uncommon that I’ll take field photos on the spot and post them to various social media feeds to boost the awareness of the feature.  When it comes to apps for hunting photos, honestly, I only use a few. And, the secret to that is simple: pick the right apps and know how to use them well.  You don’t need to over-do it. Many people today are posting things with weird filters on them from apps they bought just to get some jacked up, off the way, or weird look because it’s easy. Touch a filter button in the app and you’re done. Not me.  Think through an image and you’ll be glad you did.  My “go to” apps are:  Snapseed. The reason I use Snapseed is because there’s a ton of variety in this app for blurs, color correction, and a host of looks you can choose from; but, you can manipulate every single filter you choose in a million ways, and that makes a photo unique to your creativity.  Phonto. I cannot brag enough about this app. However, most people underutilize it. You’ve got to play with Phonto a lot to understand how to work through the interface. There’s a ton of...
Better Field Photos: Depth Of Field.

Better Field Photos: Depth Of Field.

​ Better Field Photos is a simple concept: quick tips for the average hunter wanting to capture trophy moments on a smartphone simply by knowing how to take better images in the field. Better Field Photos and Depth. Depth is what keeps an image from looking flat, and it brings in the landscape so much better, if you just think it through. An easy way to do that is to put something in the corner of the frame. It can be anything. Here's two different examples. While shooting still shots on our Blind Insights series with Sportsman Channel, I wanted to showcase Banded's new outerwear. We actually uprooted cattails in the water, and then had another hunter hold them in place, while the photographer brought them into frame.​Often you can put something in the frame that is already there. Like a tree, or in this case, reeds growing up out of the water. However, don't be afraid to manipulate things. Where we wanted to take this shot, in fact, where we need to take this shot, due to lighting and to the decoy spread, there was no structure at all. So, we uprooted a few stalks of cane and that was all it took. ​We had a few people on hand for this shoot, but I've done it all by myself, too. Holding the camera with one hand, and the structure with the other. It can be done! ​ On the turkey image, Jeremy Harrill had just taken an beast of an old bird on our Spring Chronicles episode, A Game Warden Who Came Alive. We needed some stock photography, so...
How To Ruin A Picture With An iPhone.

How To Ruin A Picture With An iPhone.

No person sets out to tap that little button and snap a picture with the intent to ruin a picture with an iPhone, but in most cases, when the little “click” chirps, that’s just what happened. How I wish that Philip Schiller, Apple’s marketing guru, would launch a simple commercial to help iPhone owners avoid the heartbreak that comes from ruining every picture they take with an iPhone. It’s not that we’re all idiots. No, in fact, iPhone people are smart people, because we use smartphones! The issue comes down to muscle memory: people hold a camera like they hold a phone.   A camera is not a phone. How I wish Apple would talk about this, for it’ll make a mountain of difference in the average user’s photo journey. With one simple revelation, you can never again ruin a picture using an iPhone. Here it is . . .   This Is A Phone.                           This Is A Camera.                 Every time I’m in a crowd and I see people capturing photos of what could become a digital chapter in their family history, I shudder, because if they ever want to print that photo, they are going to get acid reflux from the heartache of holding a camera like a phone. Let’s say it’s the moment she says, “Yes.”  Let’s say it’s the moment when you meet Bono in some coffee shop. Let’s get closer to my world. Let’s say you want to capture that trophy moment when you finally closed...
A Simple Tip For Better Hunting Photos

A Simple Tip For Better Hunting Photos

Better hunting photos is something every hunter would like to know how to do, especially when you go back through those old photo albums. If you only knew then what you know now about how to take better hunting photos then some of those pictures wouldn’t look so … well, let’s just say “sentimental.” Whether you’re using a smartphone or a real camera, the Rule Of Thirds will change everything for you.     The Rule Of Thirds.  No single truth in photography has affected me more than this timeless, simple concept.  People will take a picture of let’s say a sunset, and always wonder why the photo didn’t do the sunset justice. The reason is because, in many cases, the person took a picture of the sun and put it center frame, and failed to capture the landscape. What makes a sunset pretty is the sun reflecting off of creation; the land, the water, and everything else make a sunset pretty.  The Rule of Thirds is simple: put your subject in a corner, or off to the side, in the photo. Put it anywhere but “center frame” and you bring in the landscape.  While shooting this photo on one of our Spring Chronicles web video episodes for Sportsman Channel, I wanted to show off the yellow tops and the barn. So, I put the tom on the lower left corner, or the left third of the frame, to draw the eye toward the landscape that makes this photo give proper justice to the barn and pure country, spring feel that I felt walking out with him over my shoulder. ...
Trophy Photos Ruined Forever

Trophy Photos Ruined Forever

Better Field Photos is a simple concept: quick tips for the average hunter wanting to capture trophy photos on a smartphone simply by knowing how to take better images in the field.  The problem with this shot is what is wrong with the vast majority of all of us who take photos anywhere . . . it’s simply too wide. In most cases, people want to take photos and get everyone in the shot. That’s fine if you have to do that for a group shot, but what makes a photo interesting is people, and more importantly, emotion in the eyes and face of the people in the photo. You simply cannot capture emotion at a wide angle in most cases.  This was a brute of a 9 pointer that I shot years ago, and I’ll never have a great picture of it, because I simply didn’t know how to take decent photos back then. Lessons learned from failure are the best lessons, but the education is brutal! (click on the photo for a better view) I see this all the time when guys take field photos of turkeys. They want to get the beard, spurs, and whole bird into the shot. I promise you, the beard would need to be 27 inches long in order for it to look as big as you think it’s going to look. Forget trying to show off all the animal.  Here you see me with a Merriam I killed in South Dakota while filming with some of the Realtree crew. The photographer captured what makes this photo strong: the Merriam’s fan and the old, abandoned home...