Photo Essay

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What is a photo essay?

A photo essay is a series of photos with captions and accompanying text that explores a single subject. Some examples of photo essays may be seen in publications such as magazines or editorial spreads.

Tips for taking a photo

To get the best photograph, here are some tips to help achieve a more professional photograph.

Steady your shot

A shaking camera can ruin a photo. It is especially important to stabilize your phone during low light settings. Here are some tips to help you steady your shot:

  • Technology services has tripods that can be checked out for smartphones.
  • Use your arm, wall, selfie stick, or other sturdy object to help you to give more balance to your phone


  • Know your environment. Light changes throughout the day so that will impact your photos.
  • Limit the use of the flash on your camera
  • Make sure that you don’t overexpose your subject so adjust settings before taking the photo
  • Position your subjects so they’re well-lit from the front and not from behind


You can use your smartphone to focus on your subject before taking the photo. This is usually accomplished by taping on the subject on the screen of your phone.

Apply Rule of Thirds

A image is split into nine equal blocks to form a grid. Your goal is to get the most interesting parts of your image near the corners of these line segments. Your smartphone camera app comes equipped with these grids in the settings. You can learn more about rule of thirds in the Resources section below.

Sway for photo essays

Sway is a Microsoft Office 365 product that helps take your essays, newsletters, and other documents up another notch through interactive features and simple to use interface.

Example photo essay