Take Your Snapchat Game to the Next Level

Snapchat! That app that has everyone saying either, ‘duh!’ or ‘huh?’

For the huh?-ers, Snapchat’s a photo/video messaging app where you can view a Snap for 10 seconds before poof! It’s gone.

For the duh!-ers: you know Snaps can be outstanding photographic art, right? Right!

So read on to learn tricks for creative “snapsterpieces” that are guaranteed to have all of your friends talking.



1. Fundamentals

Before we begin with Snapchat not-so-secrets, we must first review some photo fundamentals (that apply, yes, even to Snaps).

Rule of Thirds

Imagine a grid splitting your image into thirds both vertically and horizontally. Place important parts of your image on these lines or at points where they intersect.

Avoid having your subject right in the middle of the frame to strengthen the composition of your photo.


Negative Space (Bffs W/Rule of Thirds)

Negative space (ex: the sky) in a photo is just as important as positive space (a.k.a the subject).

Rather than filling the frame with your main subject, define the boundaries and bring balance to the composition.


Up-Close Composition

If you get up close to everyday objects, there are all sorts of weird and wonderful compositions that can be made. Surprise!


2. Features

Now let’s get to the snapping! Open up the app and take a photo by tapping the translucent circle at the bottom of your screen.


To add text, tap the “T” on your photo. It will appear in a translucent rectangle. Keep tapping the “T” to see your options for left or center-aligned white text.
Make it black by dragging your finger down the color swatch. Use your thumb and pointer finger to scale and move the text.



Tap the pencil icon to draw on your photos. Add to the scene, or write in cursive!

Essential Pro Tip

Access white text: drag your finger from the top of the color swatch to the left of your screen.

Access black text: drag your fingers from the top of the color swatch to the bottom of the screen.



Elevate your Snapchat game with filters! After snapping a photo, swipe left or right and tap the “I want filters” bar to toggle them on.

You’ll encounter three spectacular color filters, followed by others than can denote local temperature, time, speed, and more.

Essential Pro Tip: Overlay a special filter on top of a color filter by selecting the color filter you want and then holding down with one finger and swiping with another.


Taking it Further

  • Use your thumb and pointer finger to scale your emoji to massive proportions by enlarging it beyond the bounds of the photo. The color-cast on this portrait is actually the “kissy face” emoji enlarged beyond recognition.
  • Follow @brandonleepenny, expert-snapper and the author of this article!
  • Follow PhotojojoHQ on Snapchat for behind the scenes snaps.