iPhoneography

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Barrel Cactus in Desert Garden at The Huntington - image made from iPhone 5 with Hipstamatic app

Barrel Cactus in Desert Garden at The Huntington – image made from iPhone 5 with Hipstamatic app

As mentioned in the previous blog post, I received an iPhone 5 for Christmas so I have been spending some time experimenting with mobile phone photography, or “iPhoneography” for those who are too hip to call it photography. The image quality from the iPhone 5 kind of took me by surprise so I didn’t expect to be using the phone as a creative outlet but I’m glad that I have it now because I’m hooked! The image quality is not on-par with my regular cameras but it is good enough to share on the internet.

There is no shortage of photo-related apps out there so I’ve downloaded all of the popular ones as suggested to me by people on Twitter and others to get a feel for how they can help me to realize my creative vision. I’ve since deleted most of them since they were either redundant or poorly-executed. Here are the photo apps that I’ve still currently got on my phone:

Camera+ – this is the app I’ve used the most so far. I like that it has an electronic bubble-level on the screen to help your keep your images straight. There is also the ability to zoom in though you probably don’t want to go overboard with this since it achieves “digital zoom” by cropping the file. In the end, you’re left with watercolor-like detail rather than sharpness if you zoom too much.

Fall Foliage at Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, California - photo made from iPhone 5 with Camera+ app

Fall Foliage at Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, California – photo made from iPhone 5 with Camera+ app

Hipstamatic – what I like about Hipstamatic is the square format and the retro-styled rendering of photos. This is probably my favorite image-making app so far. It is interesting to note, and rather controversially, that Damon Winter from the New York Times won a Pictures of the Year International award for his coverage of Afghanistan using the Hipstamatic app.

The Thimble Theatre - Musee Mechanique, San Francisco, California - photo made from an iPhone 5 with Hipstamatic app

The Thimble Theatre – Musee Mechanique, San Francisco, California – photo made from an iPhone 5 with Hipstamatic app

Camera Awesome – seems similar to Camera+, so I haven’t used this one much. Developed by SmugMug, which is a popular photo and web hosting company for photographers.

Instagram – primarily a photo sharing app for mobile devices, it also has camera and filter processing capabilities.

Cookbooks at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, St. Helena, California - phone made from iPhone 5 with Instagram app

Cookbooks at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, St. Helena, California – phone made from iPhone 5 with Instagram app

Snapseed – Google recently purchased this company so it will be interesting to see what comes of it. The image processing capabilities in this app are perhaps the best of the bunch.

Tree Limbs Against Orange Wall, San Francisco, CA - image made on iPhone 5 with Snapseed app

Tree Limbs Against Orange Wall, San Francisco, CA – image made on iPhone 5 with Snapseed app

PhotoToaster Jr. – an interesting app with some rather extreme filters. Good for situational use.

Flickr – I have also been posting my mobile phone photos to Flickr. What I like about Flickr is that you can post your images as is, whereas Instagram crops your images to a square format.

 - photo made from iPhone 5

Bonzai Tree in Japanese Garden at The Huntington, San Marino, California – photo made from iPhone 5

What are your thoughts on mobile phone photography?

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4 thoughts

  1. I was thinking the same, Derrick. It’s not quite there yet in terms of quality but from a target demographic standpoint, I think the writing is on the wall. I’d guess that most people who post mobile photos these days don’t even own a point and shoot camera. They are just so convenient to use and share nowadays which is all most people want to do, to share on Facebook or whatever.

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