This is the part of a series of tips and tricks for our 2017 Smartphone Photography Tips guide, so be sure to check back for more! 

We might all fancy ourselves smartphone photography masters, but if we’re being totally honest, the majority of our camera rolls are filled with total junk. I just recently got back from a photography workshop in Cuba, and I brought back some genius tips with me that will give your photos professional flair, regardless of whether you’re an iPhone fan or an Android enthusiast.

The Problem: Blown-out photos

First on our list is fixing blown out photos — you know, when you capture what you think is a solid snapshot but it ends up being way too dark or light. Smartphones do their best to automatically adjust the contrast of the camera based on the lighting conditions but fall far short more often than not, and it’s incredibly frustrating.Fix #1: Just a tap

Thankfully, there’s a solution built right into your phone, If you didn’t already know, tapping on your smartphone screen while taking a photo is basically magic. If you find your photos are coming out too dark, tap on a darker area of

the frame to boost the brightness. By the same token, tapping on a bright area that is blinding your view will calm it down and darken the shot so you can actually see what you’re pointing at. On iPhone, you can adjust the brightness even further by dragging your finger up or down on the screen, right next to the little sun icon.

Fix #2: Shades save the day

The built-in tools are great for tackling about 90% of your brightness woes, but what about a really, really bright shot? This trick is so easy you’re going to kick yourself for not thinking of it first: Just use your sunglasses!

Think of it this way: Your phone’s camera lens is like an eye, and it’s doing its best to fight against a blinding glare and failing spectacularly. Grab your stylish shades, put one of the lenses in front of the camera sensor, and watch the world come into focus. It’ll stop the glare in its tracks and let you snap the perfect picture.