With cellphone cameras becoming more powerful with each generation, it is only logical that photo apps progress as well. Cellphone cameras are responsible for the modern day snapshot. Everyone has one. It is quick and easy to use (none of that pesky f-stop stuff to worry with) and can instantly connect to your social network of choice. Various apps have been created to transform your Starbucks latte into a “work of art” with just a few finger taps.
So, let us take an iphone snapshot of my dog, post bath, and play with a couple of these apps! Goal: Crappy to less crappy and social networking worthy! I will be using my iPhone 3GS. Yes, I know I am two generations behind. Yes, I am eligible for an upgrade. Yes, I will when this one quits working.
Meet Zee, our 4yro blue Doberman. We adopted him two years ago. Complete space cadet, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Original iPhone image.
My first app of choice: Adobe Photoshop Express. FREE! Photoshop for my phone? Sounds awesome! It has all of your basic photo editing processes: exposure, cropping, sharpening, etc. With an upgrade, a noise reduction filter is also available. For this, I toyed with the exposure, saturation and contrast. I have found that, in this case, controlling the contrast is a bit more user friendly than the sharpening feature.
The next app I experimented with in an attempt to give my pooch some pow, was Snapseed, $4.99. This app is extremely easy to use and shares many of the same features as PS Express, plus some. I really appreciate the Selective Adjustment feature, which, as the name applies, allows you to select on the subject of your choice and enhance brightness, contrast and/or saturation. The Tune feature allows you adjust your white balance. Sharpen, straighten, crop – it’s all there, as well as various filters and frames. For my image, I decided to play into my dog’s pedigree by using the Grunge filter (junkyard guard dog, anyone?). I then used the Selective Adjustments to focus primarily on his face, resulting in some depth. Again, cropping was involved. After completing your image, Snapseed makes it easy to connect to Facebook, Twitter or your printer.
Finally, we come to Instagram. FREE! And basically idiot proof. If you have not explored Instagram, I suggest you do. Not only is it a photo editing app, but it also a networking source. Think of it as Flickr and Twitter coming together. Of course, you have the options to share your creation beyond Instagram, as it is easily connected to Twitter and Facebook. Instagram lacks the processing features of both PS Express and Snapseed. You cannot adjust your exposure and it automatically crops your image. However, there are an array of filters that allow anyone to create that vintage or grungy vibe. In Zee’s case, I first turned off the frames. As I said, the auto cropping is already in place. Leaving a frame in the photo would have meant the tips of his ears would have been lost. I used the selective focus feature to once again draw attention to his face. After that, it was as simple as choosing my filter: Rise. Finish and connect.
I asked my Facebook friends which edited Zee they preferred. The consensus was the Snapseed version. However, my personal choice is the Instagram dog.
There you have it – three ways to take your not so wonderful iPhone pic and turn it into Facebook aw. That’s not to say that there isn’t some amazing iphoneography out there. I have seen many images that made me say “That was taken with an iPhone?” But, for the vast majority of us, there is an app to hide behind! Happy shooting!