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Use Portrait mode at home. iPhone Family photography.

Updated: Apr 9

Do you want to know how to use Portrait mode on iPhone? Even I use it and I’m a professional photographer.

It’s no substitute for the real deal, don’t get me wrong but it uses some crafty witchery that gives you some lovely shots out of your smartphone at the end of it. And in the current climate (Coronavirus) this is the perfect useful tool for all non-photographers.



It uses clever software to blur the background in your photos. The subject’s face will be perfectly sharp in the foreground, while the background appears beautifully blurred.

It’s especially useful when there’s a busy, messy, or distracting background too - much like all of our living rooms, kitchens and houses right now.

The blur brings the viewer’s attention back to the main subject.


You’ll find Portrait mode on iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, XR, XS Max, X, 8 Plus and 7 Plus.

How to use it - Open the Camera app on your phone. Then swipe across the shooting modes at the bottom of the screen and select Portrait.

It’s worth noting that Portrait mode doesn’t work well in low light. If there’s not enough light, a message will appear telling you more light is required.



Next, your subject has to be between two and eight feet from the camera. If your subject is too close or too far away, you’ll be prompted to move closer or further away, I spend the whole time doing this and getting annoyed - but the results are often worth it.


When you’re at the correct distance from your subject, you’ll see the words ‘Natural Light in yellow’. (On iPhone 7 Plus, you’ll see Depth Effect instead.) This means your iPhone has successfully identified the subject and the background.

The camera automatically focuses on the face of your subject and blurs out the background. Yay!

Once you’ve composed your shot, simply press the shutter button.

The result will be a beautiful portrait photo with a fab, blurred background.

Stay safe.

L x

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