phone camera working

Posted by & filed under Travel Photography.

Did you know that your cell phone can outperform even the best and most expensive DSLR cameras? I’m talking brands like Canon and Nikon, the big kahunas of the photography world. It’s true.

bel woodhouse
Bel Woodhouse

Smartphones these days have amazing cameras in them. So that tool you carry around in your pocket has many benefits. It’s capable of producing photos good enough for publication, can make you money, and even get the highest accolades in photography competitions. But don’t take my word for it, I can prove it. Look at these examples.

These photos have received the Top 10% award in a photography game called GuruShots, which draws photographers worldwide to compete in challenges. Competition is fierce and thousands of photographers enter these challenges. So, when your cell phone photo outperforms those taken with top-rated DSLR cameras, it is a great example of what a powerful tool your phone is.  

This photo was taken while walking down the road one day. I loved the textures of this old red wooden gate so I pulled out my cell phone and took a picture. It ranked 182 out of 3,212 photos, and that was just in the top category: All Star. There were 6,799 photographers entered in that challenge. That means my cell phone outperformed world-class photographers and their fancy equipment.

door shot with phone camera

Here’s another example. During my morning walk, I happened to look down into a cycad. It was so green and vibrant I snapped a quick picture. To date, it has been awarded seven different awards and finished in the top category All Star in nine challenges. People love it. It has received 15,969 votes.

That means that photographers from all over the world have loved this picture. It also means that chances are, an editor will too. For something that took a few seconds to do on my morning walk, it’s another great example of what a powerful tool your cell phone can be.

palm tree

The best part is, it doesn’t have to be a close-up to get the detail. You can do the same with destination shots or pictures of attractions.

I have an iPhone 7, but the good news is that most modern cell phones have cameras good enough to capture fantastic detail. Definition good enough to be published and rival the expensive cameras.

This photo reaching out over a cenote is a great example. It has come in at the Top 10% of all pictures entered. Ranked 198 out of 1,928 photographers in the top All Star category. Plus, each photographer had four images each, so that means it’s 198 out of 7,712 pictures and shows great detail.

cozumel mexico bridge shot with a camera phone

There is a misconception that cell phones don’t produce photos good enough for publication. I can dispel that myth and vouch it’s not true. I’ve had cell phone images in both print and digital magazines. And top-rated magazines like the #1 beekeeping magazine in the U.S.: American Bee Journal. Like this one taken over a hive with my cell phone when the keepers quickly took the roof off so I could see right down into the hive.

bee caught with camera phone

So, don’t be deterred. Don’t think you need a lot of expensive and fancy equipment worth thousands of dollars to get out there and take photos. Your trusty smartphone can do an amazing job if you give it a chance.

It does everything, takes great photos and has editing tools to help the images really shine. Next time you are out, take your cell phone out of your pocket and give it a chance. You could be amazed with the results and end up thinking, “why didn’t I do this years ago?”