iPhone tips: Create surprising effects with Live Photos

If you know Live Photos, you know that the feature takes several photos in a row and automatically chooses the best one. But what you might not know is that this handy feature can do more than that. You can read all about it in this week’s iPhone tips!

Do more with Live Photos

When you take a Live Photo with your iPhone, it records what happens one and a half seconds before and after the photo is taken. You can then choose a different main photo, add a nice effect or edit the Live Photo.

The Live Photos feature is available on iPhone 6s and later, iPad (5th generation) and later, iPad Air (3rd generation) and later, iPad mini (5th generation) and later, and 2016 or later iPad Pro models. Want to know what you can do with the Live Photos feature on your Apple device? We’ll show you the best options!

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1. Take a Live Photo

To begin with, of course, you need to take a Live Photo. The feature is enabled by default. Check to be sure that you see above the relevant icon, without a slash through it. If there is a line through it, tap it once.

iPhone tips: Create surprising effects with Live Photos

Then you take a picture as you always do, by tapping the shutter button once. At first you may not see that it is a Live Photo. That’s because your iPhone automatically chooses the best photo. Tap the thumbnail below to see what point of the three seconds this photo is at. located.

If there is something in the picture that moves, you make it visible by holding your finger on the photo. In the thumbnail view, you can see the whole three seconds playing.

2. Choose the best photo yourself

live photos

If you are not satisfied with the photo that is automatically selected as the best in Live Photos, you can also choose one yourself. You do this as follows:

  1. Tap on ‘Edit’;

  2. Tap the Live Photo icon at the bottom left (these are several circles on top of each other);

  3. Choose the photo you want and tap ‘Set as main photo’;

  4. Tap Done.

If you want to save the selected photo as a ‘normal’ photo, tap ‘LIVE’ at the top of the screen after step 3 and then ‘Done’.

3. Use the Repeat and Bounce functions

With Live Photos you can have the recording of three seconds repeat automatically, or automatically play forward and backward alternately. These functions are called ‘Repeat’ and ‘Bounce’.

iphone tips

You can simply select the functions from the drop-down menu that appears when you tap ‘LIVE’ in the top left. But for the best results, adjust the recording first. You can set yourself what the first and last photo of the movement is and therefore also how long the movement lasts. That works like this:

  • Tap on ‘Edit’ at the bottom of the screen;
  • Tap the Live Photo icon at the bottom left;
  • Determine the start and end point by dragging the left and right arrows;
  • Tap Done.

4. Use the Long Exposure feature

In the same way as the ‘Repeat’ and ‘Bounce’ functions, you can also enable the ‘Long Exposure’ function. This feature works best if you’re taking a Live Photo with only one part moving. This is how you bring movement into your photo. Think of a photo of a waterfall where only the water has been blurred by the movement, or a trail of car lights.

live photos long exposure

If you want to use this function of Live Photos, it is extra important that you keep your iPhone still for the entire three seconds while taking the photo. If you don’t, other parts of your photo will also appear blurry.

5. Disable Live Photos

iphone tips

If you do not use the above functions at all, it is better to disable Live Photos completely. You can disable the function by tapping the icon in the camera app, but then every time you open the camera app the function will be enabled again. If Live Photos is accidentally switched on, it will actually only cost you extra storage space. To disable it completely:

  • Make sure there is a line through the Live Photos icon in the camera app;
  • Open the Settings app and tap on ‘Camera’;
  • Tap ‘Save Settings’ and make sure the ‘Live Photo’ option is enabled to save the setting you made.

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