Phoneography Guide: How to Shoot a Wedding on Your Phone!

Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

The Big Day. You’re outfitted, rehearsed and have a belly full of butterflies.

This isn’t your wedding day. It’s the day you’re shooting one with your phone!

So what apps are you going to use and what lenses will help you along the way? And OMG whataboutbatterylife.

Photojojo’s very own *pro* photographer Kim Thomas will tell you just what you need to shoot a wedding with your phone!

She recently shot one here in San Francisco for the lovely couple pictured, Jonathan & Brandi.

It’s a big day. Not just for them, but for you and your phoneography chops, too.

Why it’s cool:

ingred-smThere are all kinds of reasons you might want to shoot a wedding with your phone!

Maybe it’s the challenge you’ve been missing or maybe it’s just that your DSLR’s in the shop.

Maybe you just want to see if it can be done! Will your photos look much different through your phone’s lens as opposed to your DSLR’s? Will your friends be able to tell?

It’s exciting, and you’re dying to see what will happen. So try it! Kim did. Here’s her guide on how to best prep yourself for the big day.



  • A camera bag (or a phone bag)
  • Your camera phone
  • Another camera phone, as a backup (an older model or a friend’s works)
  • A charger
  • A portable backup charger (Kim used one from The PJ Shop)
  • Cell lenses, such as our Phone Lens Series or the Olloclip
  • Optional: the iPhone SLR Mount
  • Glif Plus tripod mount (for the iPhone) & a tripod

NOTE: This will vary from photographer to photographer, but the above is to give an idea of the kinds of tools that will help you get awesome results like Kim’s!


paint-smIf the wedding is outdoors, you’re all set with natural lighting.

Either using an outside camera app or your phone’s built-in shooting app, you can choose your exposure by touching the part of the photo or using an exposure adjustment tool to get your exposure just how you want it.

HDR mode (either built-in or via an app) will help capture a balanced exposure when you have bright skies and a shadowy subjects.

If your wedding is indoors, place the couple next to windows where you can find natural light.

If you don’t have any windows to work with, this is where the Glif Plus and your tripod will come in handy. That’s because you’ll want to stabilize your phone as much as you can when you’re shooting indoors.

You won’t be able to eliminate all noise, but it will help, and some grain is a-okay in my books. A little bit of grain and even some motion blur gives photos that old film look.

EXTRA TIDBIT: You might consider combining the powers of a tripod, an app that lets you control shutter speed (like Slow Shutter Cam for iPhone), and an external flash. With these, you can set a long exposure and pop off a flash to light your couple.

Apps & Tools

paint-smI edited all the photos with Instagram after the wedding.

When it comes to outside accessories, cell lenses are really helpful in getting a closer view when you can’t get close enough or giving you a wider angle when you need to pack more into your image than space allows you.

And if you want to get advanced, you can try something like the iPhone SLR Mount which lets you shoot photos on your iPhone with a Canon or Nikon SLR lens!

Shooting Portraits

paint-smI start photographing people from farther away so they can get used to the presence of the camera, er, phone, being there.

People like direction and trust you to make them look good, so tell them what to do and how to stand. For example, it’s as simple as telling them to “stand facing one another and hold hands.”

When posing the couple, you can still capture candid moments by telling them to have a conversation with one another. They’ll start talking and laughing, and then you can snap your photo.

Having your subjects change up their line of view can help change the mood in the photo. A photo of a couple standing there looking at the camera will look a lot different from a photo of the couple standing there looking off into the distance. It adds a little wonder to your photo.

Lastly, remember that the environment is that additional subject in your frame. Pose your couple based on what’s around you. They could be leaning against a tree, looking over a balcony or sitting on some steps.

Shooting Candids

paint-smCandids can be tricky because your iPhone doesn’t work as quickly as your DSLR will.

Since that’s the case, don’t be afraid of motion blur. You can still capture the mood, and the blur may make your photos look more like film, which is always cool.

Battery Life

paint-smIf possible, have a backup phone. You might use an older model that you no longer use as a phone or borrow one from a friend.

If you are at an indoor location, I recommend leaving one of your phones plugged in a safe place, and then you can swap phones once your current one is almost out of battery.

If you don’t have an extra phone on you, keep a portable backup charger (or keep your phone in a Power Wallet) with you for when you need to recharge your phone. Remember to start charging your phone before it’s too late as it will take a bit of time to charge back up.

If you have any downtime during the wedding (say the couple is going to freshen up and grab some drinks), use that time to charge up.

Even More Tips & Inspiration