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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Gadget Bag: iPhone Apps


Instead of always hauling the Big Boy D-SLR, get creative with the iPhone’s built-in camera and these apps. Low cost and often free, they let you break away from the constraints of your “serious” photography and stay fresh.

This Article Features Photo Zoom


Best Camera, PanoLab Pro


Tilt/Shift Generator
We’ve largely ignored camera phones in OP because they just haven’t been part of the nature photographer’s main photo-shooting toolkit. Some recent discussions with various contributors, including Basic Jones columnist Dewitt Jones, have sparked a lot of interest. If you read Jones’ column in the October issue, you got some perspective on how a particular camera phone, the Apple iPhone, has kindled some new creativity within him. What it comes down to isn’t so much about what the iPhone’s built-in camera can do; it’s about the wealth of iPhone Apps that make it possible to really have some fun with the images.

Like any camera phone, the iPhone won’t replace your D-SLR anytime soon. It won’t replace your compact camera yet either. But it’s a dazzling piece of technology that relieves you from the burdens of sometimes overwhelming equipment choices and lets you extend your creativity.


Pixel Perfect
Think of the iPhone and the apps at your disposal as a sketchpad—a really powerful sketchpad. As we write this, more photo-centric apps are coming online in the Apple iPhone App Store almost daily. Some are refinements of previous apps, but some reimagine the use of the iPhone as a photography tool.

One of the most exciting new apps is called Best Camera—the brainchild of professional photographer Chase Jarvis. Jarvis is a global pro who’s as comfortable shooting adventure sports in the mountains as he is photographing in a Seattle pub as local bands perform for intimate crowds.


Crop For Free
His new book, The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You, is a collection of images all taken with the iPhone. In the book’s introduction, Jarvis describes the yearlong project that led up to the book’s, and the app’s, creation:

“It is said that Rodin molded hundreds of hands in preparation for creating the hand of The Thinker, as he explored musculature, the folding of fingers, and on and on. Undoubtedly, each of those hands merits the label ‘art’ in its own right. It’s in this same vein that I consider the images in this book. While each iPhone picturecertainly contributes a thread to the overall fabric of my creativity, it’s of a deeper or, perhaps paradoxically, simpler interest to me that each iPhone image ultimately stands on its own. Two megapixels at a time, each photograph reveals how I process the visual information around me, how I see the world.

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