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Capture the Moments of Your Life: A Guide to Using A Phone Camera

cell phone camera

Are you of the generation that forgets your cell phone is actually a multi-use gadget that can do everything from direct you to a friend’s house to videotaping your grandchild?

Many of us want to capture a moment and fruitlessly search for a camera, forgetting there’s one in our phone. Or we remember the camera in our phone but after searching for the correct icon and settings, we find the moment has passed.


Want to make your life better by using technology? Here’s how.


How Do I Use My Cell Phone Camera?

No matter what type of phone you have, you should have a camera icon somewhere on your screen.

How do I take a photo or video?

Press the icon, and a screen should come up that frames your subject. The default is photo, but there’s a toggle or button if you want to switch to video. Hit the large red or white circle to take a photo or start the recording.

You’ll probably also see another camera icon somewhere at the bottom of the screen. If you activate that icon with a touch, it enables you to take selfies. You can switch back and forth as much as you want.

For a more detailed explanation of how to take a photo or video with an Android phone, read this.

For a more detailed explanation of how to take a photo or video with your iPhone, read this.

How do I find the photos or videos?

If you have an iPhone, look for the Photos icon. If you have an Android, it will be called Gallery.

Select it. You should be able to see your photos.

How do I download my photos or videos?

There are several ways you can download these files. If you’re using the Facebook app, you can attach them to a post, and they’ll be on Facebook. Try these Facebook tips!

You can download them to the computer by attaching the USB cord from your phone’s charging port to your computer’s USB port.

Once you’ve plugged in, you’ll get slightly different responses, depending on if you’re using an iPhone or an Android.

For an iPhone, a window will show that asks if you want to download your files to the iCloud, your Mac or your PC. If you haven’t downloaded iCloud for Windows to your PC, this is not an option if you have a PC.

After you’ve made your choice, simply follow the instructions. Don’t be concerned if you don’t get it right the first time. Try as many times as you need.

For an Android device plugging into a Windows computer, make sure the screen on your phone is unlocked.

  • On your computer, access Settings, go to the folder icon at the bottom, then press the Windows button and e. In the left-hand column, find This PC and select it.
  • In the upper ribbon, click System Properties.
  • In the new window, select Device Manager from the left-hand column.
  • Look under Other Devices until you find Android.
  • Doubleclick on it, then double click on either "Internal storage" or "SD card". If you have an SD card inserted in your Android device, your pictures may be located on it. If you don’t see “SD card”, double click on “Internal storage”.
  • Double-click the "DCIM" folder and you’ll find images from your camera.
  • You can select them individually, then use File>Save As, or you can select a group of photos, then right-click and “Save As”. If you can find it in the left-hand column, save it to the folder Pictures.

How do I email my photos or videos?

If you have an iPhone, you can email, text message, Tweet or Facebook your image from the Photos folder. Simply press the icon and follow instructions.

For Android phones, you must open the email, text, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or other app, then attach the photo.

Need More Help?

Don’t be afraid you will damage your cell phone or your computer. That’s unlikely.

If you need additional help, check if your local library or senior center has classes. For personalized help for your specific problem, your local library will almost always come through for you. You should also be able to go to the place where you purchased your phone and ask for help.

For additional helpful information, try Smartphone for Seniors.

At The Esquiline, we can help you learn to use your smartphone more effectively. We’re all in favor of using technology to ensure the health and happiness of residents.

Whether it’s Wii bowling, free Wi-fi or emergency response systems, technology has a place here as long as it’s proven to be of benefit. Experience the independent lifestyle at The Esquiline.  If you’d like to learn more about what we offer, call us today at 618-394-6400 or 800-533-6279 or complete our online form here.