Have you ever considered how a great Instagram photo has the power to bridge distance and time between people on a fundamental level?

You’ve probably seen and taken a few like that. But what if you could take them almost every time?

Image: An image within an image. A person taking a photo with an iphoneWe have combed the web for many hours and found the very best YouTube videos on how to take amazing photos with your phone, and frankly, we were astounded as we played with our own phones and these tips and tricks.

We are also giving you a new place to share some of your very best with the world: ISAAW!

ISAAW – pronounced exactly like “I saw…”, is an acronym we’ve come up with that just happens to use the first letters in our by-line here at Ever Widening Circles (EWC): It’s Still An Amazing World! We would love you to share inspiring moments from around the world with the EWC community.

You can transform your own Instagram account and help us populate an Ever Widening Circles Instagram page full of wonder and beauty from all around the planet.

Image: Friends by a lakeToday’s article was one of the toughest I’ve had to put together in a long time for two reasons: First, there are countless “how to” videos on this topic but most are not very compelling. They turn out to be either very amateur, or the YouTuber is difficult to follow.

Secondly, we’d like to help people take better photos that prove this is still an amazing world, but the vast majority of these videos are about selfie or food photography.

Yes, this was a time-consuming article to write, simply because of how long it took to curate the best videos for us all. But we did it, and here are some of the best on the web!

Most of the best videos we found were specific about using the iPhone, but we later learned that most phone cameras have the same features. You just have to play around a little to find them on other phones. We also found that using editing apps – after you take the photo –  seems to be key. So we share a couple great editing videos with you at the end of the article.

If, after finishing this article, you are inspired to look for more coaching, we highly recommend the YouTube channel of Emil Pakarklis.  This fellow is a great communicator and photographer. He’s the best we found on the web and his videos have had more than 3.5 million views, so I must not be the only one who he connected with!

Getting the most out of your phone’s camera:

Now make sure you have your phone ready and play with these videos as they progress. Stop and start over as often as you like through all these.

First up, let’s make sure we all know what our camera can do! Here’s the first piece by Emil Pakarklis:

Ok, did you get seven out of seven? I didn’t, so now my toolbox starts to expand immediately

Now the next few videos contain some tips that we are still playing with every day. You may want to drop back into this EWC article many times to practice with these YouTubers as tutors. But once you get these next concepts down, your photos will be transformingly fun.

Now here are some amazing tips for night time photography:

We’ve all had this problem. I can’t remember the last time I was able to get a great shot at night and a lot of really special moments come up after the sun goes down! Here are some fantastic tips:

How about real magic: Reflection Photography:

In this video Emil expands what we think is possible, right in the palm of our hands!

Great Action Photos and Burst Mode:

Ok, now that you’ve taken some photos, there are sure to be a few that you feel have potential, but they were not quite right. Turns out there are some fabulous, simple editing tricks that can turn an average photo into something really special.

Editing a photo to make it a masterpiece:

That took us on a little editing journey, but here’s one other that was so quick and concise that we felt we needed to include it. Stay with this one. This fellow is quite a character, but once he get’s started, you’ll find some great ideas here!

And now for some inspiration:

Most of us have at least one extraordinary photo in us according to the photo editor of National Geographic. He’s referring, of course, to the most iconic photos ever taken. In the TED Talk, we’d like to close with, David Griffin shares with us some of the best images and explains what makes a great photo awe-inspiring and along the way, he gives us, even more, inspiration to take our own.

Via: TED-Ed 7

Why should we care?

Did you know that our impulse to take and share photos probably comes from millions of years of evolution?

Our brains are hardwired for using images to make sense of the world. In fact, hundreds of millions of neurons are devoted to processing what we see and 30% of our cortex (the part of the brain involved in using our senses) is devoted to sight, compared to only 8% and 3% devoted to touch and hearing, respectively.

There appears to be something very deep going on when we see what someone else is seeing. With the best photos, we share the emotions as if we were there.

Join us on an Instagram journey. Maybe we can get a bit more connection and meaning out of the Ever Widening Circles Instagram!

Send us your very best, especially the pics that tell a story or share a feeling.

Stay open, curious and optimistic!

~ Dr. Lynda

More inspiring photographers!

There’s a whole category of them! Click the button below to explore!

Photography on EWC


  1. “7 Hidden IPhone Camera Features That Every Photographer Should Use.”YouTube. Emil Pakarklis, 10 May 2017. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67xl_3gwc-I>.
  2. “Little-Known Techniques For Taking Sharp IPhone Night Photos.” YouTube. Emil Pakarklis, 26 May 2017. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Hkf9v3DYGE>.
  3. “Secrets For Taking Stunning Reflection Photos With Your IPhone.” YouTube. Emil Pakarklis, 26 May 2017. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7JB0RUjT_k>.
  4. “How To Capture Action Shots Using The IPhone’s Burst Mode.” YouTube. Emil Pakarklis, 26 Apr. 2017. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9WeczwoZVA>.
  5. “How To Use Photo Editing Apps To Turn Ordinary IPhone Photos Into Beautiful Masterpieces.” YouTube. Emil Pakarklis, 29 Mar. 2017. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2sZceLA3pqk>.
  6. “A Guide To The Perfect Instagram.” YouTube. ConnorFranta, 02 Nov. 2015. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6G139NrUoQQ>.
  7. “How Photography Connects Us – David Griffin.” YouTube. TED-Ed, 01 Jan. 2013. Web. 01 Oct. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-UrpcSRVGk>.

Dr. Lynda is a dentist, artist, global traveler, and philanthropist who looks for potential and shares it with the world. Hear her latest conversations with thought leaders on the Conspiracy of Goodness Podcast--new episodes every Wednesday!