iPhoneography is all about freeing yourself from the limiting thoughts that say that you need special equipment in order to take amazing pictures.
In the same breath, you cannot limit yourself to a computer in order to curate a uniform (themed) Instagram grid.
You've probably already heard about this app. Every iPhoneographer has either seen Darkroom being used by someone or at least heard of it being touted as a great tool for editing photographs on the fly.
Either way, the hype is real and warranted!
Darkroom 3 is a desktop experience in the palm of your hand. Giving you features like RAW image editing, allowing you to edit Live Photos, Large-Resolution Images, and even Batch Editing. Like all premium desktop image editing apps, you have the capability of either using free filters or making your own "presets."
When you see the name "Adobe" in front of a title, you ready yourself for the greatness that is about to follow. Lightroom Mobile does not disappoint.
Lightroom Mobile is simply the mobile version of Adobe Lightroom CC, and it gives you all the same desktop capabilities that you've come to expect, without needing to be part of the Adobe Creative Cloud!
So even without an Adobe ID, you can access your Photography Plan subscription, and use Lightroom comfortably on your iPhone.
Through this, you're able to capture new images, edit them and share them across various online platforms, i.e. Instagram, Mail, other devices, etc.
An amateur iPhoneography enthusiast doesn't have the same needs as a professional photographer who also partakes in iPhoneography. Snapseed is the app that bridges the learning curve between professional and amateur tools.
Snapseed comes with the standard photo editing adjustment tools, and some filters to boot! It does what you'd expect from an app like Instagram or VSCO, all without the user needing to have a keep "design" eye.
If you're having a bad skin week, Snapseed allows you to remove small blemishes from your photos as well as make the image more conducive to social media publishing. Unlike a lot of the same caliber apps, Snapseed's edits are non-destructive, so if in future you change your mind about the images' white balance, contrast, etc, you can change it or simply undo those changes.
Short for Visual Supply Co, VSCO is probably synonymous with Instagram, like Macaroni is with Cheese. The one way that most people have found out about this app is via hashtags like #VSCOcam, #VSCO, and #VSCOgram.
VSCO is an image editing app that comes with a built-in camera and its own photo sharing community. All you have to do is download the app, snap some pictures, edit the images and add filters. Every complete image can either be shared in VSCO's community or on other social media platforms.
Being part of the VSCO community allows you to see what other iPhoneographers from all around the world are doing, and the sort of content they're creating. The VSCO team curates the content and allows the creators to tell their stories.
Recommended Lens Kit for any burgeoning iPhone photography enthusiast would be the Hitcase Snap & Polycarbonate PRO, because it allows you to switch your Hitcase Lens on the fly!
This Hitcase Lens Kit is a great accessory for travelers on vacation. It features compact and lightweight lenses easily twist on, and it allows you to protect your iPhone on the beach, rainforest or on the slopes but still be able to record outdoor wide angle shots or a closeup of a hermit crab.
The Lens Kit comes in a handy pouch and works with all your photo and video apps. These two versatile lenses will open up a world of recording capability for your iPhone.
By now, having built-in filters and presets into an iPhone photography app is a no-brainer. Camera+ takes this concept and bumps it up a level.
Camera+ is an ideal iPhoneography app, because of the Touch Exposure & Focus which give you some much control over the images that you take that a desktop photo editing app like Photoshop is a last thought. You can actually set the exposure separately from the focus on this app, and create the result that you'd otherwise have to use a DSLR for — specially in low light conditions.
With your Hitcase lens snapped on, capturing images in Burst mode allows you to get every single nano-second and pick from the pack. Imagine never worrying about another missed moment! Camera+ comes with something called Lightbox that allows you to manage your images and get rid of the bad shots, so that only the cream rises to the top and is saved to your phone.
If you've previously taken images that are lackluster using other apps, Camera+ allows you to import these images into Lightbox and edit them as though they were freshly shot with the app.
Night-time shooting is a challenge for both pros and neophytes alike. Very few professional photographers have truly perfected the art of shooting at night. With Cortex Camera, you and your iPhone are finally able to be part of a skilled minority.
How? Cortex Camera combines dozens of individual photos to create a single high quality and noise free image. It aligns them in real time so the image will be sharp even when no tripod is used. All of this happens so fast that you don't even realize that the app is taking multiple photos, and the end result is so velvety smooth that you won't believe the image was taken with a phone.
Complement this app with Hitcase's TrueLUX SuperWide Lens, a modified fisheye lens for your iPhone.
What exactly does modified mean? It means that the camera will not produce nearly as much image distortion as the average fisheye lens on the market. Creating an end result that looks more like an ultra-wide lens.
With 3 spherical lens elements, the TrueLUX SuperWide delivers high-quality images with excellent detail throughout the entire field of view (FOV), with none of the vignetting typical of other ultra-wide lenses. It offers an extremely close minimum focusing distance of 16mm compared to a native 90mm focus distance on recent iPhones, allowing extreme close-ups for additional creative options.
A free app with upgrades that are worth the investment. That's Enlight in a sentence.
If you're a Photoshop buff, you'll be able to easily transition to Enlight as a lot of its functionality sort of mimics Photoshop, for starters there are layers that allow you to increase an image's editability and transform an otherwise ordinary image into something that's worthy of your Instagram feed.
If you decided to go pro, Enlight comes with a subscription-only mode called Darkroom, which gives you a simple way to control various tonal parameters, along with some new film filters that I frankly found a little too heavy-handed (although you can dive in and edit the presets yourself). If you want to make more dramatic alterations, the Enlight Photofox subscription also includes a bunch of graphic elements that you can weave into your images.
If you’ve seen those “a e s t h e t i c” Instagram stories that appear to have been taken in a completed different era, with an old 140p camera, this might just be the secret ingredient.
Mextures is the only app that allows you to apply film grain, textures, light leaks and various gradients to your images without you needing to know much about how to do this. It happens quickly as well!
The edit that you end up with isn’t even the final product, because Mextures allows you to still fine-tune these edits to your liking with various photo adjustments. Then you can either save the images on your iPhone or go directly to your Instagram feed to share your need creation.
The key to any app is to make it uniquely yours!
It would be great if these apps were able to give you a creative eye and help you approach Aquatography, Travel Photography, Vlogging or iPhoneography from an interesting vantage point, but they don’t make up for not having anything interesting to shoot. That’s entirely up to you!
To make your journey just that much easier to navigate, get reliable tools first and then go out and just take photographs.
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