How To Take Awesome Instagram Photos Using Just Your Phone

Ready to level-up your grid? Here’s how to take awesome Instagram photos on your phone.

Priya Gondaliya
5 minutes read

By now you know that the key to standing out on Instagram is this: creating and sharing top-notch content. While Reels need to be a key part of your social media strategy, it’s also crucial that you know how to take awesome Instagram photos on your phone.


Because creating content shouldn’t be hard or expensive. In fact, raw candid content wins on social media!

So before you run out and invest in a fancy DSLR camera, we’re here to show you how to maximize your smart phone’s camera and use it capture thumb-stopping Instagram content. 

Let’s dive into everything you need to know about taking high-quality photos using your phone’s camera. 



Why Do High-Quality Instagram Photos Matter?

It’s never been tougher to cut through on social media, which is why crafting memorable content matters. 

By capturing high-quality, engaging photos to share to your Instagram feed, you can help users discover and fall in love with your brand. 

Plus, in a sea of so many options, crafting a unique aesthetic can help you to carve out a niche and a loyal audience who will pick your brand out from the pack. 

Take Gorgeous Instagram Photos With Your Phone!

It doesn’t matter if you’re a novice photographer. These simple hacks will get you the perfect Instagram profile picture and more, just like you’ve always wanted. 

Step 1: Setting Up Your Phone for Capturing High-Quality Instagram Photos

There are a few things you need to understand about your phone camera in order to shoot awesome Instagram photos before you can even start to think about composition, lighting and editing.

#1 Keep HDR Off

High Dynamic Range or HDR, is a setting available in both iPhones and Androids, which is essentially there to assist you in capturing good-looking pictures. However, it’s a little difficult to get it right while clicking photos and sometimes the photos look unnatural. 

Keep the HDR setting on if you’re a confident user; otherwise, it’s recommended to disable the HDR to make it simple. Let your camera do wonders without actually worrying about the exposure level.

#2 Don’t Over-Expose Your Shot

When you’re shooting a picture in the sunlight, sometimes half of the picture is highly bright while the other half is not exposed at all. To get this right, always under-expose your Instagram photos which you can later edit by increasing the brightness level. 

To under-expose an image, tap on the portion with more light, adjust the focus and click! It’s always advisable to capture Instagram photos in natural light.

#3 Check the Photo Mode

With the latest technology updates, more camera modes are available that enhance picture quality. “Portrait Mode” is one mode that detects the object to be captured automatically and delivers well-composed Instagram photos.

Step 2: Capture Outstanding Instagram Photos From Your Phone

#1 Composition

Photo composition involves arranging visual elements in the frame to enhance the visuals and, at the same time, capture a mood or setting in an interesting way. A perfect composition can turn an ordinary photo into seemingly beautiful visuals. 

With a photography Rule of Thirds, get your composition game going strong. It’s not a rule but a guideline/best practice where your camera screen is split into small grids. These cross-sections provide key points for the intersection and placement of important elements to make it visually more appealing.  

Useful Tip: Turn on the “grid” settings in your phone’s camera setting to enhance capturing awesome Instagram Photos.

#2 Understanding the Depth of Field

In simplest terms, Depth of Field (DOF) is the portion of your image in focus. Creating DOF for your Instagram Photos will definitely level up your game.

To explain this with an example, imagine you’re capturing a person who is standing at an amusement park. You want the person in focus and the background to be blurry. That’s where you’ll work your way around DOF. 

On iPhones, the yellow square shows which area of the picture is in focus. Tap on the area on which you want to focus, let the yellow square detect it and click! For Android users, just tap on the screen to focus. 

Step 3: Setting Up the Shot

After adjusting all of your camera settings, it’s time to actually capture the photo. While taking the picture, note the angle at which the photo is taken, be it a selfie or a flat lay.

#1 Acing the Flat Lay Game

You must have seen those drooling food pictures with a perfect table setting taken from above. That’s a flat lay! Flat-lay pictures are best taken in natural light. Contrasting flat lays, especially lighter shades for your product, works the best. Add textured fabric, wooden elements, ceramic or marble for your Instagram photo background to make it more appealing.

#2 Getting the Instagrammable Backdrop 

Make your Instagram photos more lively with colorful backgrounds. Graffiti walls, city lights, fall trees, etc., can make some amazing backdrops. Remember, any spot can be Instagramable; you must let your creative eyes look for it. 

Step 4: Filters, Editing + Post-Production

After capturing awesome Instagram photos, it’s finally time to beautify your photo. Browse from amazing Instagram in-house filters and make the picture look more stylish! Once you’re ready with your pictures, schedule them with Plann and auto-publish them when your audience is online!

Sign up for a free Plann Pro account today and never miss a post again. Schedule your Instagram content one week, month, or more in advance and build a community that loves your photography as much as you do.


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