This updated Camera Bag post will also go in the navbar above. I wanted to share the evolution of my iPhone. You can read my original Camera Bag post here.
The best camera is the one that’s with you and the one that’s with me nearly all the time is my first generation 8 GB iPhone 2G.
I don’t use one app exclusively to shoot with. I have several and try to match up the image with the app. 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.
iPhone apps are constantly being created, updated and improved. Since I first wrote my original Camera Bag post, several new apps have been released and several 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. Here’s my updated toolbox — the go-to apps I’m currently using.
It’s now my default camera app. ProCamera has had several awesome updates recently and is the camera replacement app to beat for serious iPhoneography. Adjustable image stabilization, full-resolution 5X digital zoom, and fast reload times make ProCamera my iPhone cam of choice.
It’s slow. It doesn’t save at the iPhone’s full resolution. You can’t apply filters to images in your camera roll. There are a lot of reasons not like this app. But Hipstamatic isn’t about reason — it’s about reconnecting with the analog experience of shooting a camera. I love this app. Bottom line, shooting with Hipstamatic is fun. It doesn’t hurt that it also has the most awesome filters to make your photos look analog.
3. Vint B&W
Glyn Evans from iPhoneography.com turned me on to this overlooked gem of an app. A simple black & white camera app for your iPhone. It produces 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.
4. Camera HD
All this app does is allow you to shoot in-camera with different aspect ratios. Yes, you could achieve the same results by cropping in post-processing, but I really like the ability to compose my shot to the frame in-camera. I use this app a lot.
5. 5.0 Megapixel Camera
Resamples images as you shoot. This app has its limitations (read my review here), but sometimes you just need more than 2 or 3 megapixels. 5.0 MPX produces good results in “rezzing up” images — without the need to carry around a laptop and Photoshop.
These are the apps that I use most often for post-processing:
6. Perfectly Clear
One button image scrubbing — improves the sharpness, exposure, saturation and contrast. I usually run my images through Perfectly Clear before doing anything else to them.
Sure, PhotoForge is more powerful and has more features, but I use Photogene for about 75% of my image 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…
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 can do 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.
Converts color images to monochrome. Makes photos look like they were shot with a very fast black & white film. Multiple sliders unique to this app allow me to really fine tune the look of the conversion.
Another darkroom-oriented image processing app. It even uses the word “Develop” instead of “Apply.” I use it often to add vignettes, to convert images to black & white, and to tweak the saturation and contrast of an image through the app’s Push/Pull Processing feature.
11. 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. It also adds really nice saturation and contrast to an image.
It’s still a nice set of filters that add mood and texture quickly and easily. My faves are the Helga and Magazine filters. Helga is their implementation of the classic Holga lo-fi camera. Magazine adds some great film grain to a vintage effect. Both filters are classic lo-fi.
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!
Unless indicated, nearly every image you see on this site has been shot with my iPhone and processed on my iPhone with one or more of the above apps.