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Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

wgeorge-LG-before-after-grid-1000.jpgCaption: Two side-by-side photos of the Montreal skyline. One photographed at a tilted angle (left) and one photographed straight along the horizon line (right). (Wendy George)Your camera has all kinds of great tools you can experiment with to improve your photography. One such feature worth using is your camera grid. Whether you’re shooting with a smartphone or a DSLR, it’ll help you keep the lines in your image nice and straight.

 

The grid divides the capture frame into thirds both vertically and horizontally to help you easily align all the elements in your photo.

 

GI-675064268-1000.jpgCaption: A closeup photo of a woman taking a photograph of a cityscape, with the camera grid function turned on in her smartphone. (Getty Images)

 

This can be especially helpful when photographing a horizon, landmark, or shop exterior.

 

See the difference using grid lines can make in the photos below.

 

Without using the grid

 

wgeorge_before.jpgCaption: A photo of the skyline of Montreal with skyscrapers and buildings, photographed at a tilted angle. (Wendy George)

The bright blue sky, lush greenery, and stunning skyscrapers could have made this scene an interesting and aesthetically pleasing photo. The problem? It was shot without a camera grid, so the horizon line of the Montreal skyline is noticeably crooked. It looks like the city is falling down.

 

Here’s another example.  

 

cd-before-use-grid-1200.jpgCaption: A photo of the entryway at the Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon, photographed at a tilted angle. (Christina-NYC)

This scene of the entryway at the Portland Japanese Garden in Oregon also had the potential to be a great photo. It’s shot in natural light and showcases interesting textures. However, because it was photographed at a tilted angle, the quality of the image suffers--and it makes viewers want to tilt their heads with it. The angle is so distracting, you might even miss helpful info such as the access ramps.

 

Using the grid:

 

 

wgeorge_after.jpgCaption: A photo of the skyline of Montreal with skyscrapers and buildings. (Wendy George)

Here, our photographer used grid lines to help her capture the scene and, as a result, drastically improved the quality of the photo. The horizon line is level and we can see an accurate depiction of the location.

 

cd-after-use-grid-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of the entryway at the Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon, taken at a straight angle while using a camera grid. (Christina-NYC)

I also used my camera’s grid to capture the above photo. Now, the architectural lines are straight, the access ramps are clearly visible, and the entryway entices you to walk through.

 

Using grid lines is a small effort that makes a big difference. So, next time you’re capturing a beautiful building or a scenic landscape, be sure to use it. The grid will help you to achieve perfectly straight photos every time!

 

How has using a camera grid improved your photography? Show us the great photos you’ve shared on Google Maps below.

35 comments
OmerAli Level 8
Level 8

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

nice one @Christina-NYC

   people actually believe that smartphones are all about snapping no matter where they are and what it is. But, honestly, after vacations while sorting the photos we end up realizing that most of our photos are unusable due to bad composition. 

   I say grids for the smartphones and viewfinder for the DSLRs, one must master. Perhaps, a little deep dive into creativity and mastering rule of thirds will cause no harm and one will always gets great composition every single time. 

 :)

@OmerAli
bdmafuz Level 8
Level 8

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Thanks @Christina-NYC it will help us to take perfect photos.

gowthamselvam Level 8
Level 8

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Hi @Christina-NYC,

The article was very much useful. @OmerAli i agree with you. People realises it only when checking afterwards. 

By there many options available to straighthen the pictures. (Post editing ) 

Gowtham Selvam
you are educated by travelling - Solange Knowles
HiroyukiTakisawa Level 10
Level 10

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Thank you for sharing this nice tip @Christina-NYC

I agree with you. Most of the people are not using the grid but it really useful for us.

I'm using the grid not only adjust horizon but using the crossing point as a reference point:-)

Ayu_asri26 Level 5
Level 5

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Wow amazing ... Thnks @Christina-NYC you gave me way of perfect photos.. 

JeroenM Level 7
Level 7

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Thank you for this welcome tutorial. 

@Christina-NYC, I see lots of photos by Local Guides that are purposely taken in a way that the horizon is at a steep angle. It makes me wonder if this is some sort of fashion that I am missing?

 

I would love your reaction to Diagonal Horizon - Good or Bad?

JohnPeter Level 10
Level 10

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

Thanks @Christina-NYC,  I often faced this issue. 

 

Grid is the easy tool and available tool but never tried. 

 

Now I have activated this tool,  hope to get best photography. 

 

Thanks for the very valuable tips. 

ShahnewazAhmed Level 8
Level 8

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

It is a great post indeed for those who are desperate to take pictures and share them with Local Guide fellow.

Thank you @Christina-NYC for your significant article, which will help us a lot.

Hardtoung Level 5
Level 5

Re: Using a camera grid to get your photos straight

You are a genius,perfect advice for me.

Thank you...