30 Incredible iPhone Portraits and Photos of People

Thank you all for participating in our weekly iPhone photography contest! Unfortunately there was a delay in publishing the winners due to my crazy travel schedule, but that doesn’t make this week’s winners any less inspiring. Since the contest was moved to EyeEm the submission quality has further improved, so if you’re on the fence about joining the contests on EyeEm you should definitely give it a try! With that said, here are the winners of this week’s contest.

People iPhone Photography 13


People iPhone Photography 1


People iPhone Photography 2


People iPhone Photography 3


People iPhone Photography 4


People iPhone Photography 5


People iPhone Photography 6


People iPhone Photography 7


People iPhone Photography 8


People iPhone Photography 9


People iPhone Photography 10


People iPhone Photography 11


People iPhone Photography 12


People iPhone Photography 14


People iPhone Photography 15


People iPhone Photography 16


People iPhone Photography 17


People iPhone Photography 18


People iPhone Photography 19


People iPhone Photography 20


People iPhone Photography 21


People iPhone Photography 22


People iPhone Photography 23


People iPhone Photography 24


People iPhone Photography 25


People iPhone Photography 26


People iPhone Photography 27


People iPhone Photography 28


People iPhone Photography 29


People iPhone Photography 30


Which one of these photos is your favorite? Please let everyone know in the comments.

Analysis of the Winning Photos

Every week I take a few of the winning photos and do a short analysis explaining what I like about each photo and what iPhone photography lessons we can learn from them.

People iPhone Photography 3


This photo is a great example of how shadows can be used to enhance your photos. One of the common guidelines in photography is to make sure that your own shadow is not seen in the photo, but here the author had done exactly the opposite with great success.

The cool thing about shadows – especially if the actual subject is left out – is that the viewer can only guess who the person in the shadow is, which  adds mystery to the image and leaves a room for the viewer to come up with their own story about the photo. To me this shadow seems dramatic, almost scary, but it could very well have a different meaning in your version of the story.

Also notice how the author has selectively applied painterly post-processing only to the background of the image. You can use Image Blender or similar masking apps to selectively selectively apply effects to only some parts of the image.

People iPhone Photography 21


There are several things I like about this powerful portrait. First, the simple background helps the eye focus on what is really important in the photo, namely the subject. One of the most essential portrait photography tips is to use a simple background that doesn’t divert the attention from the subject.

Second, the bright-blue tone contrasts nicely with the skin-tones and the pink shirt that the girl is wearing. Those of you who are familiar with the color wheel will notice that these tones are opposite from each other, which leads to a dynamic and more contrasted image.

Finally, this image has a really interesting horizontal balance. If you look at the background, the separation of blue and white puts a strong emphasis on the left side of the photo. However, the subject itself is on the right, and she has covered one eye, which invariably draws our attention to the right. This creates a dynamic and unique composition which is pretty much guaranteed to attract the eyes of the viewer.

People iPhone Photography 28


This simple and beautiful portrait of a boy demonstrates an important principle when taking photos of children and other small subjects. You should always lower yourself to the level of your subject (or slightly lower) to make sure you don’t get a bird’s-eye view in which the subject is lost in the background. People often take photos from the height of a standing adult, but that is rarely the best angle for taking great photos of children.

This image is also a great example of the rule of thirds as it applies to portraits. In particular, it’s important to leave plenty of room in the direction in which the subject is looking as the human eye always follows the gaze of the subject. If our eyes are forced to go off the frame, the photo will rarely feel harmonious.

The New Contest Theme

It’s fair to say that the vast majority of IPS readers live in cities, which always provide an amazing variety of photography subjects and situations. I want you to go out and explore your own city as an iPhone photographer and then share the best photos that you take with the IPS community.

So the new contest theme is city, and the new contest hashtag is IPSCity (albums are now called hashtags after the latest EyeEm update).

To participate, simply tag your photos using IPSCity hashtag on EyeEm. You can tag photos in the description field which is shown when you upload photos or when you edit a photo that has already been uploaded. Please upload your photos to EyeEm in full resolution to make sure I can feature them on the website.

It’s OK to submit old photos as well as new ones, but please do not submit more than 10 photos. All photos must be shot and edited on iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. I do not feature photos with watermarks.

The submission deadline is Sunday, April 13.

  • Zach Antonick

    Honored to be chosen! Looking forward to the city contest since most all of my photos are taken in the city.

  • Cachorro12

    Thank you for the feature, quite honored specially after seeing the other winners. Great work you all.

    • Thanks for participating! I hope to see you participate in the city contest as well.

  • Paul Moore

    Hi Emil. Thanks very much for including 2 of my photos in this week’s excellent selection.

    • You had so many great submissions, it was hard to include only two…

    • Paul Moore

      That’s great to hear 🙂

  • 3xMama

    Beautiful people photos this week! Thank you for including mine among so many great shots. Looking forward to the city contest!

  • Faye

    I too was honored to be among the winners this week….so many great photos. Thank you, Emil. I am really enjoying EyeEm also.

    • I’m happy to hear that Faye. Good luck next week!

    • Stuart Guest

      Congratulations Faye

    • Faye

      Thanks so much, Stuart.

  • Jeff

    Great selections and congrats to everyone.

  • David Rothschild

    I really like corenzo96’s image for its original context and the green really contrasts beautifully. And Michal koralewski’s umbrella shots are super dreamy.. Thanks for selecting my work Emil! And the next contest sounds awesome!!

    • That shot in the library is really epic, I find it hard to believe that a moment like that could be real. And umbrellas have always been some of my favorite subjects, so I might be a bit biased there. Thanks for participating!

  • Stuart Guest

    I like michal_koralewski’s first image of the lady in the archway. I think it’s a fine black and white example. I love how she is in silhouette and there is also some movement in her leg which I think adds to the overall picture.

    • The motion blur in that one is really awesome. You don’t always need perfectly sharp photos, especially not in street photography!

  • Mattdao294

    Thanks for all the kind words you gave me, emil! I was about to cry when i saw mine on winning photos!
    FYI, just read all your tips and tricks just 2 weeks ago on idownload blog and then this site! Ive got to say this iphoneography changed me a lot in person!!! Before i was so lazy shooting pics! You really gave me a lot of interesting and helpful lessons that i can now apply to my photos, just like the one with my sister! Now i enjoy shooting everyday thanks to you!
    Good luck to you and Keep doing good stuff!

    • Thank you, I’m really happy to hear my work has helped you!

  • laurayehledemotte’s picture of the eyelashes is incredible. Was so instantly impressed that I went about trying to recreate it (clumsily) myself immediately after. Creative, interesting perspective, definitely eye-catching……

  • Very inspiring – I really wish I lived in a crowded city sometimes so I could get more people photos…living in the suburbs there are rarely any people on the streets! The images are all wonderful – I’m not familiar with Paul Moore – I must see more of his work.

    • You only need is one person to change the feel and character of a photo. Use the people you know as subjects – even make them post if that makes sense. I think Elaine @sunflowerof21 only shoots her kids and family and the results are amazing!

      Paul’s work is incredible, definitely check it out!

    • Today I was lucky – I went to the Renaissance Faire and was able to photograph lots of people and they wanted to be photographed! I’ll take your advice for the future though.

  • Roman Ivanov

    Can I post my photo to instagram with hashtag IPSCity?

    • It has to be on EyeEm, I can’t keep track of all the submissions otherwise.

    • Roman Ivanov

      ok) i have joined to eyeEm ^-^