Time and again we come across circumstances where we have to travel to some place on a personal reason and you are not justified to carry your complete camera gear and end up with a sore back where the trip was suppose to be meant for backpacking or even a family visit or best case a location scout. Across the web we come across various photogs talking about numerous walkaround camera+lens combination and also some advanced and compacts and also some really feature rich compact cameras. We hear all names from Canon G12 to Leica M series to Fuji X100 to Canon S95 etc etc. But over a period of time I have been convinced that if we are really not going in for a trip which does not involve shooting for portfolio or commissioned work, i am not justified by carrying something that i would even spend few hundred dollars and call it a compact camera. This is exactly the time when the super-advanced camera phones come into picture. Each and every smart phones in the market have a decent 3.2MP to 8MP sensor in them and are really capable of capturing some really good images when on the move. Not only that you are using your phone as a travel camera, but also that its reducing the overhead of you having to worry about carrying an additional camera, charger, memory cards and also worry about file management etc. Camera phones in my words are the best and ideal start up point for any budding or serious photographer to learn the art of composition and also document things which would otherwise look daunting using a expensive higher end cameras. Fixed focal length, Compact carry on size, limited variables to worry about when snapping really makes it easy to handle and reduce the overhead. I always follow and also advice people to use Camera phones as a day-2-day device to learn the art of composition and art of seeing. Adding to it, the numerous apps that gets released everyday either in the istore or android market makes even more fun to even edit the images that you snapped a few moments ago and try to get creative in the presentation. Staying away from larger gadgets and tools like photoshop etc and will definitely push your creative limits and forces you to see and present things in a different which wouldn’t have been possible if you use the tools of your trade everytime. Last few of my personal trips with my family/friends i tried to test this concept myself before writing this blog and i have to admit its fun and a good excercise. Not only that you are not getting all that attention in a remote place for carrying a bulky or expensive camera, it also as i told above gives u opportunity to push your processing skills and take it for a ride before hitting the upload button to social media.
Being an iPhone user for a while now and the ocean of options in the iStore i would like to push your attention to some of my favorite photography apps that i sort of use everytime i snap an image using the camera phone or use one or many of them on a single image to come up with a final presentation image.
Photoshop Express ( Free )
Pro Camera ( Paid )
Instagram ( Free )
Streetmate ( Paid )
PixtroMatic ( Free )
Many a times the images i play around editing on my phone gets a treatment from more than one of the tool above. There are many more good ones out in the market ( some free and some paid apps ) (and also on my phone) but its left to your creativity and interest in choosing what you like and what you want to achieve with your camera phone images. I did recently hear about an app called Snapseed from Niksoftware which works on top of iPad and has got some really good opinion/reviews, but having said above the more the gear you carry the more you end up in trouble.
This topic is something which i wanted to write for a while but struggled to sneak in time between my busy schedule. But even now am not still convinced about the content and the pointers i have provided but hopefully in the follow up posts on this topic i should be able to justify it better.
If you feel you have been in this game for a while and have an app that you want to bring it to picture as a suggestion to self or to the other JTN readers please do feel free to drop in a line in the comment box. I would be very happy to give it a try. Android guys – please do pitch in your thoughts or views as well with the app suggestions.
So its time for you to decide if its the gear which is good or the vision !
PS: All the images above are shot and edited on the phone.