Photography: Is your iPhone good enough?

Nowadays, everyone has a camera phone with them everywhere they go. This means that we can take pictures at any time, and store those memories. But having a camera doesn’t automatically make you a professional photographer, does it?

More importantly, I thought that camera phones would definitely not be good enough in a professional capacity. If I had to submit something to a newspaper to print, or a news website, can I send a photo I took from an iPhone without compromising on the quality and resolution?

I mean, photos taken with DSLRs just have this amazing quality to them, provided you do know how to use one properly. Not only that, whipping out a phone to take pictures just doesn’t have that same professional look or effect.

But there are iPhone photography awards out there that prove that indeed, the best camera might just be the one in your pocket.

Image by: IPPA Awards

This is one of my favourites. I love the details captured in this photo, and her haunting eyes. This was a 2013 winner.

Image by: IPPA Awards

This is a great shot taken at the perfect time. It does have that mysterious Casablanca-style look going for it too. This was a 2014 runner-up for Photographer of the Year.

Gerard Collett from London, UK - 1st place News/Events

Image by: IPPA Awards

This photo proves that you don’t have to travel all the way to a distant place or hire a helicopter to get the perfect shot. You just have to find the opportunity and take it. This was a 2014 1st place winner, in the category of News/Events.

Not only that, Garance Dore (a YouTube vlogger, and one of my personal favourites) has a whole video detailing whether everyone can be a photographer with something they already have with them.


Journalism school are also beginning to teach students how to shoot news videos and photos with their phones. After all, it’s a lot more convenient compared to lugging around heavy equipment and going through security checks.

So I went out with Meld Magazine to a Korean Festival in May to experiment. They taught me that the camera quality of the iPhone 5 is indeed decent enough for the photos to be presented in a professional capacity. iPhones? Photography? Is that possible?

Meld Korean bracelets

This is one of my favourite photos, if not my favourite. I absolutely love shooting in macro, and just getting right in front of something or someone. Of course, the bright colours really helped the picture, but I honestly think this is a good enough quality for a professional newspaper or news website.

Meld Korean showcase

Well, I like this but I don’t love it. This is a great photo-journalism shot though, but definitely not in the category of photography.

Here’s an UnKorean-related photo taken by an iPhone. I do think that there is a fairly good quality to it.

In all, I suppose that camera phones are really catching up. But in the end, whether you’re using a DSLR, a compact camera or a camera phone, it’s really the skill that matters most. Much of a good photo also depends on the lighting, the angle, the colours, the exposure and the composure of the photo. But that’s just what I think. What exactly do you think makes a good photo great? Does the equipment really matter?

In fact, if you think your iPhone photo is good enough, the IPPA Awards 2015 is now accepting submissions! Are you game?

Fari Wu

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Do you agree? Disagree? Have you had personal experience with professional photography done on iPhones? Would you like to do a guest post on it? Let me know.

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