How to Shoot Stunning Nature Photos with Your Phone (VIDEO)

Right about now you’re probably saying to yourself, “No experienced landscape photographer would be out on the field shooting with a smartphone.” And with a few exceptions you’d be right—unless the camera’s battery died and there’s nary a spare in sight.

But the tutorial below from New Zealand-based landscape pro William Patino isn’t intended for accomplished landscape photographers, but rather for those who are out and about in the great outdoors without what some would call a “real” camera.

In less than five minutes Patino breaks down four essential pillars of landscape photography—finding the perfect location, creating captivating compositions, working with natural light, and editing the results. He does this in the context of unlocking the power of a smartphone to create “jaw-dropping” landscape images.

While Patino’s top tips won’t represent more than a quick refresher for advanced landscape shooters, they’ll be a revelation for most phone photographers. And the techniques he describes work equally well for iPhone and Android owners alike.

Location is everything when it comes to landscape photography, and Patino has several great tips for the uninitiated. As he says, it’s important to not just be in a scenic place, but to take time soaking up the surroundings and narrowing down that grand view into a smaller slice that makes a great photograph.

Similarly, when it comes to composition, Patino explains that, “First and foremost it’s important to narrow down your subject matter and base your composition around that.” He demonstrates several powerful techniques, including the use of leading lines to guide the viewer’s eyes through the image. A strong foreground object also really helps add depth to the shot.

Patino’s advice for using light to advantage is equally powerful, whether you’re shooting at Blue Hour in the morning, Golden Hour at the end of the day, or even when the sun is high in the sky. He wraps up the lesson with some simple tips for editing the images on your phone.

There’s much more to learn about landscape photography on Patino’s instructional YouTube channel, so be sure to pay a visit when you have time.

And check out another tutorial we posted recently (for photographers using a camera), with several more tips for those new to landscape photography.