8 Situations When Smartphone Photography Is King

If you’re serious about photography, you’ll probably want to buy a digital camera. And if you already have one, you’ll know that the quality of photos you can take with these devices is nothing short of excellent.

However, using a digital camera isn’t always the best choice. Sometimes, your smartphone’s convenience beats most of the benefits of using a proper camera. These scenarios can vary; safety might be paramount sometimes. But in other cases, wanting to capture something quickly is the name of the game.

This article will highlight the situations when smartphone photography trumps a digital camera.

1. When You Want to Remain Discreet

Travel photography is an exciting genre, and capturing your experiences with a digital camera is a lot of fun. But unfortunately, you will find yourself in some cities and countries where flaunting one can put you in danger.

Using your smartphone is often the best bet when you want to remain discreet. Opening your camera app takes less time than switching on your digital camera and toggling the settings. Moreover, your smartphone is easier to put away.


Of course, you’ll still want to practice due diligence when using your smartphone. Observe the situation and determine whether it’s safe to take photos—and if you’re even allowed to do so.

2. When You Want to Capture Something Quickly

Depending on where you are, using a digital camera isn’t always the best way to capture memories. Having one with you at all times is ideal, but it’s sometimes inconvenient to get it out of your bag to shoot something. And by the time you have, the moment might already have passed.

For example, if you’re out with loved ones, it’s much easier to snap a picture on your smartphone. Similarly, having your phone is excellent for documenting those important moments in life—such as your child taking their first steps.

Even if you only capture a quick photo with your smartphone, you can still make it look professional later. Adobe Lightroom has a mobile app, and Photoshop Express is also an excellent tool for quick editing.


3. When You Don’t Have Enough Space in Your Suitcase

You’ll need to think carefully about the camera gear you take on your travels. Taking smaller camera bodies and lenses is an excellent way to travel lighter. But sometimes, you might not want the hassle of taking extra equipment with you.

Let’s say you’re not too bothered about taking the best possible photos on a trip, you simply want to capture the moments that matter to you. In that case, you might find your smartphone much more convenient.

Using your smartphone for photography will allow more space in your bags for the other essentials you need. Moreover, you can relax and focus on having a good time.

4. Taking Underwater Photos

Underwater photography is no easy feat, and unfortunately, most cameras are not equipped for it. Even weather-sealed cameras have their limits; they might save you in a rain shower, but submerging them for extended periods will probably cause long-term damage.

If you want to take pictures underwater with a digital camera, you will need to buy a specialized camera. What’s the alternative if you don’t want an extra piece of equipment to worry about? Simple; use your smartphone!

Many modern smartphones are water-resistant; you can also get cases to protect them underwater. You will, however, still need to be careful; water-resistant does not mean waterproof.

5. Activities Where Bringing a Digital Camera Isn’t Ideal

Sometimes, the best photo opportunities happen in situations where bringing a digital camera is inconvenient. One of many examples is exercise; how many times have you been for a morning jog and seen an incredible sunrise?

When performing activities like exercise, smartphone photography is king. You can use your device to quickly capture things you think look pretty, and it’s also good for photographing your form while weightlifting.

If you’re at a party, you’ll also probably find it easier to use your smartphone instead of bringing a camera. You can snap away as much as you want without needing to constantly toggle the settings on your camera or make sure it’s safe.

6. When You’re at an Event as a Spectator

Attending live events is often some of the most memorable experiences in our lives. But taking a digital camera isn’t always ideal if you’re watching your favorite sports team play or at a concert of an artist you love.

You might be able to use a digital camera, but you could also get in the way of other people or even have your camera confiscated—especially if you have a larger DSLR. And again, it’s not ideal to switch it on or toggle with the settings. Instead, you’re better off snapping what you want on your smartphone and enjoying the rest of the event.


7. Getting to Grips With the Basics of Photography

If you’ve only just started photography, it’s often better to start with a simple camera. Digital cameras have excellent image quality, but the wide range of settings can sometimes be a distraction.

Smartphones allow you to learn basic photography skills like composition and lighting. Since you’re often more limited with smartphone photography, you must think outside the box to capture more creative shots, and doing so will make you a better photographer in the long run.

Before purchasing a digital camera, consider spending at least six months taking photos with your smartphone. You’ll have a much smaller learning curve when you switch to a real camera.

8. When You Can’t Afford a Digital Camera

While digital cameras are fun to own, we can’t get around the fact that they are often quite expensive. And regardless of how much you want to do something, you should think twice before purchasing something you can’t afford.

It’s much better to wait and save up for the camera you want rather than pick something you can’t afford or are not particularly interested in.

Since you already have your smartphone handy, you don’t have to worry about delaying your photography journey. Moreover, you might surprise yourself with the styles of images you can take.

Once you’ve got enough saved up, you can still save some money by buying second-hand photography gear.

Sometimes, Smartphone Photography Is Just Better

It’s easy to look at the world’s best photographers and envy their camera equipment. But while owning lenses and camera bodies is great, the best camera is often the one in your pocket.

Smartphone photography is a versatile way to capture the moments that matter to you. And thanks to the wonders of modern technology, you can still edit them to look professional.

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