Cell-phone cameras have a hard time with low lighting. Use these cheap and simple fixes to get the shot when the conditions aren’t bright and sunny:

  • A flashlight will help to boost the lighting for cell-phone photos with or without a flash, and since it’s a continuous light source, it can help with video too.
  • A small single-LED light will work for close-ups and macros. Use a bigger multiple-LED light to throw more illumination a greater distance.
  • Many camera phones can capture monochromatic images in near-total darkness with the help of an infrared flashlight. Make sure it is a multiple-LED flashlight with a wide beam to “light” your infrared subjects.

Adapted from: The Camera Phone Book: How to Shoot like a Pro, Print, Store, Display, Send Images, Make a Short Film. By Aimee Baldridge. Photos by Robert Clark. (National Geographic, 2007; $11)