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Saturday, June 4, 2011


My Camera Bag
Marty Yawnick iphone 4 photo apps iPhoneography
I have a camera. Sometimes I use it to make phone calls.
After retiring my trusty lo-fi iPhone 2G, the camera that’s with me nearly all the time is my iPhone 4.
One of the features that makes the iPhone camera unique is the availability of thousands of photography-related apps. For less than the cost of a DVD, you can basically get a whole new camera experience. I don’t use one app exclusively to shoot with. I have several and try to match up the image with the app.
iPhone apps are constantly being created, updated and improved. Since I first wrote my original Camera Bag post (check out the original November 2009 post and the January 2010 update), some apps have fallen by the development wayside, failing to keep up with the hardware advances of the new iPhones. Other new apps have been released, and many apps have been improved to the point where they have leapfrogged ahead as far as functionality and performance.
I find myself shooting with many different apps than the first time I wrote about my iPhone’s camera bag, including on occasion many apps that aren’t listed here. Here’s my newly updated toolbox. With 14 apps, it’s the biggest Camera Bag list I’ve written.
These are the go-to apps I’m currently using.
1. Camera
That’s right… Apple’s built-in Camera app. With the iPhone 4 and iOS 4, it’s really hard not to use the app. It’s simple, easy and fast. On a 4, it’s the fastest camera app available with greatly improved “reload” times. The new 5x zoom works by magic. Although it is a digital zoom and not as good as an optical zoom, Camera uses a great algorithm that helps maintain sharpness even at high zoom factors, without many of the artifacts or fuzziness of other apps’ digital zooms. It’s one of the clearest zooms available on the iPhone.
2. ProCamera
An excellent camera replacement app with a powerful toolset for taking photos. ProCamera has had several awesome updates recently and is the camera replacement app to beat for serious iPhoneography. The pro features include image stabilization with three settings, full-resolution 5X digital zoom, and fast reload times. Separate focus and exposure locks, as well as the best white balance lock in the app store make ProCamera the best shooter currently available. Speed, features, tools — ProCamera is currently my go-to camera replacement app. | ProCamera + GeoTagging -
3. Camera+
This is a full-featured camera replacement that works great on any iPhone. The interface is simple and uncluttered, but the app is well-thought out and powerful. The app features a good digital zoom for all iPhones. The viewfinder features rule-of-thirds guide lines to help with composition. The is an anti-shake stabilizer which waits until your hands are steady before releasing the shutter, helping to minimize blur and create sharper images. The separate focus and exposure targets are easy to use and a great feature.
Camera+ is fast — among the quickest reload times of any photo app. It’s got the most well thought out lightbox of any photo app. Once an image is synced to the iPhone’s camera roll, it’s deleted from the app’s lightbox, helping to reduce image clutter. | Camera+​ - tap tap tap
4. Hipstamatic
You now see HipstaPrints are all over the place, but I still love this app. Hipstamatic gorgeously recreates the look of stressed, vintage, analog film complete with noise, digital light leaks, smears and vignettes. It really does a great job recreating the imperfections of a toy camera. It’s a fun camera to shoot with. It feels analog. It’s the experience of an old camera shooting within an iPhone and along the way, it creates some stunning photographs. | Hipstamatic
5. Vint B&W
An overlooked gem of an app. Vint B&W is a simple black & white camera app for your iPhone. It creates some of the best black & white images on the iPhone. It’s especially nice in the 3/4 tones and shadows, where it produces less noise and fewer artifacts than other apps. | Vint
These are the apps that I use most often for post-processing:
6. Perfectly Clear
Fast, easy Dynamic Range Correction (DRC). I usually run my images through Perfectly Clear before doing anything else to them. One-button image scrubbing — improves the sharpness, exposure, saturation and contrast. Although the images from the iPhone 4 are much better than older iPhones, I still use Perfectly Clear often to help quickly improve images that may need a little help. | Perfectly
7. Photogene
A great app for tweaking color, saturation, brightness as well as resizing, cropping and straightening an image. I use Photogene for about 75% of my basic processing because it does what I need it to most of the time and it does it quickly and easily. When I need more, there’s… | Photogene
8. PhotoForge
This is about as close as you can get to Photoshop’s toolset on an iPhone. Big and powerful. Loaded with filters and effects, and it can edit RGB images in a CMYK color space — something Photoshop doesn’t even do. The downside is that it’s slower than Photogene. The upside, it does a lot more. I have both on my iPhone and use them. If I had to choose only one, I’d get PhotoForge to do some serious work. | PhotoForge
9. Crop Suey
A crop, rotation and straighten tool. It’s fast and easy cropping. Although apps like Photogene and PhotoForge have similar crop and rotation tools, Crop Suey is the only app that uses resolution enhancement when straightening apps. Instead of reducing the trim size of an image after a 1.2 degree straighten, Crop Suey resamples data. A 5MP image stays a 5MP image after straightening. | Crop
10. PictureShow
For creating digital lofi from iPhone photographs, Picture Show has become one of my go-to apps. With dozens of built-in filter presets, over a dozen great frames, and the ability to add noise, texture and light leaks effects, the possibilities are almost endless with this easy to use photo app. The LomoGraphy and Vivid filters are currently among my faves and the convex blur applies a great, subtle black frame around an image. Effects applied by Picture Show don’t necessarily look like Picture Show, which is a good thing. While it does have some beat you over the head effects, many of the fx are well done analog renditions. Picture Show can enhance a photograph, not hide it. | PictureShow
11. MonoPhix
Converts color images to monochrome. Makes photos look like they were shot with a very fast black & white film. Separate sliders for light shades and dark really fine tune the look of the conversion. MonoPhix is stable and creates great black & white images. | MonoPhix
12. Photo fx
I use it to add film grain to images I’ve processed in FILM LAB, but Photo fx has dozens of other great, well-rendered effects. It’s an impressive set of filters, many not found in other apps. Photo fx contains lens effects, light effects, natural looking analog film recreations, among many other effects. Photo fx is full of great filters that add gentle blur, color effects, the tint and texture of vintage films, or the distortion of a wide angle lens. And there’s little “fluff” in the filter set. | Photo
13. TiltShift Generator
More than just an app to apply a TiltShift for a toy effect, it’s a great app to create shallow depth-of-field in an image or to apply a focus effect better than any other tiltshift apps. It also adds really nice saturation and contrast to an image. | TiltShift
Your camera bag will probably look a lot different than mine and there are new apps being released all the time that push the envelope of what you can do creatively on the iPhone. Find what works best for you and have fun!

HipstaMatic for iPhone
I have much love for Hipstamatic. No other app (or Photoshop plug-in) creates such organic and analog-looking images so easily. The new Hipstamatic 150 update is available now in the App Store. From the list of features, it’s a terrific update to an already amazing app. The update adds a ton of new features and improvements, in-app file sharing to Flickr, as well as addresses several performance issues. Start-up time has been improved significantly. There’s also a new monthly photography contest accessible in-app. We’ll post more details as they become available.
As is the case with the previous Hipstamatic 110 update, there’s a new optional HipstaPak available as an additional in-app purchase, featuring two new films. I can’t wait to shoot with the new BlacKeys SuperGrain B+W Film!
The free update is live now or you can (and should) purchase the updated version if you don’t already own the app.
What’s New in Hipstamatic Model 150
  • Full resolution support in “High Quality Prints” mode
  • (1200px square for 2G/3G, 1536px square for 3GS)
  • Faster startup time
  • Misc user interface improvements
  • Prints can now be posted to Flickr in-app
  • Shake-to-randomize: Shake your Hipstamatic to select a random lens, flash, and film
  • Save favorite combos: A new button in Recent Prints lets you “change camera lens, flash, and film to match this print”
  • Prints now have EXIF data with lens/flash/film information
  • (accessible from within Hipstamatic only – not the Photo Library)
  • Film preview window on camera back
  • Improved HipstaProcessing for greater print variety
  • A new monthly contest accessible in-app
  • Anyone can win fabulous prizes
  • New free flash: Dreampop
  • New HipstaPak: Camden (includes Alfred Infrared Film and BlacKeys SuperGrain B+W Film)
  • iPod music will now keep playing when opening Hipstamatic
  • Fixed a bug where occasionally the flash would not fire, even when charged
  • Other misc fixes
Hipstamatic is still available for $1.99 USD.
Achieved by hand in Photoshop. If you're interested in doing one, I can send you the .psd file to use as a template. I'd love to see as many of these as people are willing to make. Below are the steps I took. A different work flow may work better for you.
1) set iPhone up on tripod or other fixed arrangement
2) take a reference pic using the default camera then switch to Hipstamatic
3) start with John S lens and Blanko film and shoot first pic
4) move thru the lenses in sequence staying with Blanko film
5) after Roboto/Blanko combination, reset to John S and change to Ina's 69
6) move through lenses using Ina's 69
7) repeat until you get through all 48 combinations
Editing in Photoshop
1) re-size each Hipstaprint to 200 x 200 px
2) move each into the template, aligning upper left corners to grid guidelines (command-; to hide/show guidelines)
3) re-size reference pic to height = 200 px and move into box in upper/right corner
4) save as .jpg and upload to Flickr (tag with "Hipstamatic reference grid")
(look for the photographs there)
Technisch funktioniert der Trick so, dass ein App besonderer Güte zwei Fotos nacheinander macht, um dies zu erreichen: ein Helles und ein Dunkles. Anschliessend werden die beiden Bilder übereinandergelegt und zu einem Bild vermatscht. Resultat: ein eingefrorener Moment, welcher der Intelligenz des menschlichen Auges beim Herumschweifen näher kommt. Amen.
Gut, die Theorie interessiert euch nicht, wie ich merke. Darum jetzt hier, in chronologischer Abfolge inklusive Verlinkung der jeweiligen Apps, wie ihr eure Grossmutter mit tollen Fotos beeindrucken könnt:
  1. lädt euch Pro HDR runter und fotografiert mit Auto HDR
  2. lasst eure Pfoten von den anschliessenden Reglern und speichert
  3. öffnet das Bild mit Camera+ und jagt den Clarity-Filter drüber
  4. würzt das Gemälde anschliessend beliebig mit zusätzlichen Farbfiltern
  5. postet das Foto ins Internet und steckt Lob ein
Alternativ könnt ihr natürlich auch eine tonneschwere Spielgelreflexkamera mit euch rumschleppen, Fotos als RAW aufnehmen, damit eure terrabitegrossen Festplatten auch gefüllt werden können, Fotos in Lightroom oder Aperture bearbeiten und so die schönsten Stunden eures Lebens ins Flötenorchester schicken.
Update: hier noch zwei Vergleichsfotos, interne Apple Kamera-App im HDR-Modus vs. HDR Pro. Am Himmel erkennt man deutlich den besseren Dynamikumfang, auch in den Schätten ist mehr erkennbar, zudem stimmt die Lichtfarbe des ProHDR-Fotos ziemlich genau mit der Originalsituation überein: -> Foto-Vergleich anzeigen

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