iPhone Photography Hacks for Taking Perfect Pictures of Your Kids

Get professional-looking photos from your phone with these tips and tricks

By: Amanda Mushro

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Pretty young Asian mom taking selfie with her lovely daughter against a ferris wheel when enjoying spending time together in theme park.

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Pretty young Asian mom taking selfie with her lovely daughter against a ferris wheel when enjoying spending time together in theme park.

Photo by: Images By Tang Ming Tung

Images By Tang Ming Tung

Is your phone full of pictures of your kids? Of course it is — your kids are adorable! Since our phones have the ability to take pictures as well as a professional camera, we want to make sure that we’re getting the best shot every single time. So how do we do that?

While you’re snapping pictures of your kids on your iPhone, try these 10 hacks that transform your regular pictures to "Yup, this one is a framer."

Shoot Pictures in Burst Mode for Motion
If your little one is dancing, jumping, or running, capture every move by taking photos in Burst Mode. While it’s great to capture fast-moving subjects like sports and pets, you can also use Burst Mode to blur backgrounds in creative ways.

Use the Volume Button
It's a total bummer when you’re trying to capture a cute candid of your kids but end up with shaky camerawork and blurred imagery. Next time, press the volume button on the side of your phone to take a picture. It works just like pressing the shutter button in the camera app, but it’s a little phone hack that not all iPhone users know.

Flip Your Phone Upside Down
Changing the perspective of the phone can help you take better photos. The next time you are crouched down taking a photo of your little one, flip your phone upside down and get the phone close to the ground. This will create different shadows and a different perspective that will leave you with gorgeous photos.

Change the Photographic Styles
If you have an iPhone 13 or newer, you have the option to change the Photographic Styles, which are present levels for tone and warmth. Your phone will come set to Standard but the other settings — Rich Contrast, Vibrant, Warm, and Cool — can change the look of your photos dramatically. Unlike filters, Photographic Styles cannot be applied post-capture. Try Rich Contrast and Vibrant the next time you snap photos of your kids for deeper colors and contrasts.

Clean Your Lens
This one may seem like a no brainer, but when your phone has been in your bag, in your back pocket, laying on a table, and carried around by your kids, the lens is going to get dusty and crusty. So before you start snapping, make sure it’s clean. A microfiber cloth works best, but even wiping the lens on your shirt will be better than shooting with a dirty camera lens.

Add Captions
If your camera is filled with photos of your kids, you might lose track of your favorites. Use this hack to find the photos later — adding captions. Start by swiping up on an image or video and then tap "Add a Caption." Next, write your caption or keyword — for instance, "use this one for Christmas Card or "Beach Day" — and it will automatically save to your iCloud Photos. Now you’ll be able to find the image or video later by typing the caption or keyword into your iPhone’s Search window.

Adjust the Exposure in One of Two Ways
If there is too much light and your kids or the background look washed out, tap to focus on the subject (your kids) and then slide the sun icon up or down. This adjusts the exposure levels and gives you more control of the photo. A second way to adjust the exposure is to swipe up on the viewfinder, locate the exposure settings, and swipe left or right to bring exposure levels up or down.

Turn on the Grid
Photographers often use the Rule of Thirds. Basically this means dividing the field of your image into a three-by-three grid. You’ll want to place your main subjects along these lines to create more visually compelling and interesting pictures. To do this go into settings, select camera, then toggle grid on.

Keep Photos on Live
If you are always missing your child smiling or they blink, here’s how to edit a Live Photo. Open the Live Photo and tap edit. Then set a key photo by moving the white frame on the frame viewer, tap Make Key Photo, then tap Done. However, this doesn’t work on Portrait mode.

Try the TikTok Editing Hack
Once you have the perfect picture, try this editing hack that went viral on TikTok. It has quite a few steps but you’ll end up with a photo that looks like it has a bright and bold filter:

  • Set exposure and brilliance to 100 (optional)
  • Set highlights to -35
  • Set shadows to -28
  • Set contrast to -30
  • Set brightness to -15
  • Set black point to 10
  • Set saturation to 10
  • Set vibrance to 8
  • Set warmth to 10
  • Set tint to 39
  • Set sharpness to 14
  • Set vignette to 23
  • Set brilliance and exposure to 0 (only if you did the first step)

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