How to edit cell phone photos

chicken tinga

We are excited to see so many Members adding their own photographs to recipes. It is always interesting to see everyone's interpretation of the same dish. We would love to see even more Member contributions in this area. Please do not think that only professional-level photos are allowed - we want to see real-world examples! Nevertheless, we understand that you may not like an image you snapped on your cell phone, so we are providing are a few tips and tricks to improve your photos so you will feel more comfortable uploading them.

Most cell phones - both iPhones and Android models - have built-in photo enhancement tools. Yesterday I tried a chicken tinga recipe from Food52 and snapped the photo at right using an iPhone 6. The photo was taken with the plate placed on my stovetop and using only the light from an over-the-counter microwave. As you can see, the colors are off and the exposure is dark, plus I don't care for the vertical format. 

Using the built-in photo enhancement and editing tools on the iPhone, I can ameliorate those flaws. To get to the tools on an iPhone, first navigate to the photo you want to change. You will see an icon that looks like three lines with dots on them - this is where the photo editing tools are located (red circle in the left photo below). The right photo shows the toolbar circled in red - from left to right, the tools are: crop and rotate; filters; color/light; and the Markup tool (I am afraid to say I don't know what the last tool does).

 

tools

The tools on Android phones are similar:

Android photos

Back to the chicken tinga photo: I first rotated and cropped the photo (using the rotate icon just above the word Cancel rather than the slider with numbers), then I adjusted the color balance and lightness settings.

iPhone photo tools

For the color tools, you can either use sliders that make multiple adjustments at once, or you can use the dropdown arrows to to choose each criterion separately to make the changes. To get to the slider, click on the line with Color on it; to navigate to the dropdown, select the icon above and to the right of the slider that look like three lines.

iPhone photo tools

Once I made the adjustments to my satisfaction I save the image and then uploaded the photo of the Tinga chicken recipe from Food52:

chicken tinga

As a reminder, you can add your own photo by clicking on a recipe link, then clicking the "Upload" button underneath the photo area. Let's see those pictures!

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