As smartphone cameras become ever better and apps help to improve even the most amateur of us into budding photographers, one key thing can make all the difference in a photograph.
Orientation – Landscape or Portrait
Sadly, it’s natural to hold a smartphone the same way as you do to look at the screen when you also take a photograph; upright, in portrait mode and snap away. However, as tablets, laptops, desktops and TVs are all mostly landscape mode (i.e. wider than they are tall), landscape oriented photographs are just so much more versatile and work so much better on websites.
Whilst portrait photographs do have their place, website designers can easily crop a landscape oriented photograph into a portrait oriented photograph, but cannot ‘un-crop’ the other way around.
You’ve probably seen video footage like this too. When they show smartphone clips on the news or on funny video TV shows, where the video footage is taken in upright portrait mode, but as they are showing the footage on TV (landscape – wider than tall), that portrait video footage just doesn’t fit the screen. So the broadcasters put black lines down either side of the video or add a blurred background to fill the void. YouTube is sadly riddled with this. All the videographer needed to do when they were shooting the footage, was to rotate their smartphone.
So, when using a smartphone to take photographs or video for your website or anywhere else;
Please always shoot photographs and video in Landscape Orientation