While TikTok may be a short-form video app, it has recently been making waves as a major resource for amateur and professional photographers. From photoshoot tricks to editing how-tos to fun challenges, this platform has a wealth of information every photography enthusiast can appreciate.
We’ve rounded up the 9 coolest photography tricks to try on your iPhone as featured on TikTok and the top photography TikTok accounts you should be following.
The 9 coolest TikTok photography tricks to try with your iPhone
There’s more than viral dances and makeup tutorials to be found in TikTok’s Discovery tool. Accounts dedicated to iPhone photography are showing off their top tips and tricks for taking awesome creative photos. Read on to learn more about some of the coolest tricks featured on TikTok that you can try today.
1. Vertical panorama
The iPhone Panorama mode is normally reserved for capturing long city skylines or gorgeous mountain landscapes. But this hack shows you how to use Panorama mode vertically to create unique-looking shots. Put your camera in Panorama mode and tilt it horizontally. The shot will show a view of the picture with the camera seemingly tilting up toward the sky.
2. Dolly zoom effect
Looking for a cinematic way to shoot your next portrait? Try using the dolly zoom effect, a staple of classic cinematography that can be replicated with this quick and easy iPhone trick. First, open your iPhone camera and start with a wide angle. Then press record and zoom in on your subject while slowly stepping backward. The result is #photomagic.
This trick is a simple way to get an artistic-looking shot. Find a short ledge, such as a street curb or a step, and set your iPhone below it with the selfie camera turned on. Set the camera’s self-timer mode and stand just on the edge of the curb so it looks like you’re actually stepping on the camera itself.
4. Long exposure effect
Shooting subjects while they’re in motion or in front of backgrounds with a lot of movement — like crowds or traffic — can be tough. Make the blurring work for you by adding the Long Exposure effect after you shoot, as demonstrated above.
5. Mirror magic
This is probably one of the more advanced tricks on the list, but even if it takes you a few tries to get this one right, it’s worth it! Using Panorama mode, shoot a photo of your subject adjacent to a mirror. Pause the panorama after you pan over your subject and then have them change poses in the mirror. As you can see, the end result is very cool.
6. Portrait photography
Tired of taking plain-looking self-portraits with your selfie camera? Try switching your iPhone camera to Portrait mode and lowering the Exposure setting. This will give you the depth necessary to have your self-portraits looking like professional-quality studio shots.
You’ll need to find some water droplets or a small puddle of water to properly replicate this effect. Simply turn your iPhone upside down to place your iPhone’s camera at the same height as the water’s surface, which will result in an upside-down photo. Then just use your phone’s editing tools to rotate the picture. It’s a simple trick that results in eye-catching pictures.
8. Add inches
Want to look a little taller in your photos? Easy! Once you’ve got your shot, head on over to the editing tools and use the Straighten tool to lengthen your legs. You can also use this trick to lengthen buildings and skylines or give other subjects a tilted effect.
9. Fake reflection
No reflection? No problem. For this trick, you’ll need to borrow a friend’s iPhone, which you’ll use as a mirror to reflect your subject to add depth to your image. And, as you can see, this simple trick can create a breathtaking image.
8 TikTok photography gurus to follow for tips and inspiration
Now that you’ve tried some of the top photography tricks featured on TikTok, it’s time to add a steady stream of tips and inspiration to your For You page. Below are a few of our favorite photography accounts you can follow to stay up to date on all the latest trends.
As his username implies, @jdthecameraguy is a content creator who gives tips for taking professional-style photos with your iPhone. In addition to photography tricks, he also films how-to videos and photoshoot hacks.
The account @elonakarafin is known for posting stunning travel photos on Instagram. But it’s her TikTok account where she gives away her top photo secrets. She also gives her followers behind-the-scenes looks at her photoshoots, as well as ideas for cool poses.
Self-described in his TikTok bio as the “CEO OF PHOTOS,” @tedhowells is a great account to follow for hacks that show you how to utilize random household items as photography props, like an ordinary glass of water. Plus, he shares a lot of awesome tips for beginners.
Looking for new ideas for self-portraits? Then @josie_bullard is the account to follow. Her profile is full of photoshoot ideas you can try for yourself, as well as editing hacks. She does shoot some iPhone photography tips, but she shares a lot of good content for using DSLR cameras as well.
This is the perfect account to follow if you’re a travel photographer. Not only does @felipevillegasmunera post iPhone photography tips, but he also creates tons of TikTok videos featuring easy editing hacks.
If you want to make your iPhone photos look like professional-grade shots, then head on over to @watzac‘s page. This account is full of easy tricks for high-quality photos that you can shoot and edit directly on your iPhone.
This account is more entertaining than constructive, as @realjordanmatter mainly shoots films that show him asking strangers if they’d be willing to participate in a photoshoot. He films their reaction to his request, the impromptu shoot that ensues, and, of course, the photos themselves. It’s a great account to follow for inspiration and photo ideas.
Another aspirational account to follow is @alex.stemp. He, too, asks strangers to participate in spur-of-the-moment photoshoots and posts the big reveal afterward. Follow for awesome photo ideas that you can try yourself.
While TikTok is a video platform, it has become a great place to learn more about iPhone photography and find new ideas for your next photoshoot. So follow a few of these accounts and try some of the tricks listed above to take your photography to a whole new level. Also, check our cool guide on how to do green screen videos on TikTok