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When shooting still photos with the rear-facing camera on your iOS device, you'll see this Options button. Tapping it reveals HDR, Grid, and Panorama. In this movie, we're going to talk about HDR, and Grid. Let's turn Grid on. This Grid can be used to help you frame the subjects in your shot. You may have heard of the rule of thirds when it comes to photography and design. Basically, it's often more esthetically pleasing to compose your shots by placing the subject of your photo along one of these gridlines rather than perfectly centered in the shot. So, for example, I want to take a picture of this tree.
Rather than putting it dead center in my photo, I'm going to line it up with the right gridline. I'm also going to tilt my phone a bit, so the perceived horizon lines up with the lower gridline. I'll tap the tree to make sure I'm exposing it properly, and I'll take my shot. Now a lot of this is subjective. But most people agree that using the grid can help you create more interesting and pleasing photos. Of course, it's entirely up to you to determine what looks good in your eyes. Let's go back to the camera. The second option here is HDR.
This is found only on the iPhone 4 and later, and on the 5th Generation iPod touch. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. HDR is useful when you're taking a photo that includes both really bright areas as well as really dark areas. With traditional photos, this usually means that parts of your photo are either going to be overexposed or underexposed. This often occurs when the subject you are shooting is in front of a bright background like the sky. For example, in the photo I just shot, the tree was the subject and I tapped it right before I took the photo, so it came out nicely, but the sky behind it lost a lot of detail.
The sky is overexposed. This is where HDR can help. With HDR turned on, your iPhone takes a rapid succession of three photographs. One is slightly underexposed, making everything a little bit darker, one is slightly overexposed, making everything a little bit brighter, and the third photo is exposed properly as far as the phone can determine. It then combines the three shots into a single shot, so the darker and brighter areas are each exposed enough so they don't lose detail. So, with HDR on, I'll take my shot again, and I'll review the photos.
So, as you can see, the sky now has much more detail, but the tree and ground are still properly exposed, too. Now HDR isn't going to be appropriate for every situation. In some cases, you might actually want certain parts of your photo to be under- or overexposed for effect. Also, because the camera is taking three photos, it's not always great for shooting pictures of people or other subjects that are moving quickly. As you saw, HDR photos take a little longer to save than regular photos. So, you don't want to use it if you are trying to capture a rapid succession of shots. But HDR photos can look incredible under the right circumstances.
And by default, your iPhone saves the single, properly exposed, non-HDR version of your shot as well, so you can review both versions and determine which one looks better to you. If you prefer not to save the normal version of an HDR image, you can go to Settings>Photos & Camera, and here, slide Keep Normal Photo to off. So, those are the Grid and HDR features you'll find under Options. There is one other option there as well, Panorama, and we'll take a look atthat in its own movie.
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