Musings: On the Eve of the iPad

Apple iPad iPadography
The New iPad from Apple

In about 20 hours from the time of this writing, the world changes. You are here to see it.

Tomorrow morning, Apple’s iPad will be unleashed to the world. I truly believe that the iPad will change in a very big way how we receive content and information. I believe the iPad will create new industries, rescue old ones that are embracing the new slates, and be a nail or two in the coffin of others that can’t or won’t adapt.

“There will always be print.”

One of the biggest arguments about the sustainability of print is the argument that you can’t take your computer with you into the bathroom. That changes tomorrow. After 9:00 am, Saturday, April 3, you’ll be able to read, or The New York Times in big screen splendor during your morning constitutional. Newsprint fingers will be a thing of the past. Can’t help you when the toilet paper runs out, though….

Many iPhone photographers will embrace the iPad. Even before it’s release, there are already several iPad-only and iPad-optimized photography apps available, including iPhone standards such as CameraBag, TiltShift Generator, and Photogene as well as brand new apps such as Filterstorm and PhotoPad. More are in the pipeline as developers update their iPhone apps or create new ones to take advantage of the iPad’s larger screen and faster processor. Apps like Photogene and PhotoForge — powerhouse image editors for the iPhone — will definitely benefit from the greater screen real estate the iPad affords.

I’ll be purchasing an iPad. Not one of the very first ones tomorrow, but one of the 3G versions to be released in the coming weeks. Having the option of a pay-as-you-go data plan when out of WiFi range is very appealing to me. For me, the 3G option is a better bridge between my iPhone and my MacBook Pro tethered to my jailbroken iPhone using PdaNet.

I’ll be using my iPad in many places I currently use my iPhone, but where I wish I had a bigger screen. Checking email at the airport will be a breeze with my new iPad — with or without WiFi. Reading books on the iPad will be a much more inviting and easier on the eyes than reading on Kindle for iPhone. We’ll be able to read recipes much easier when the iPad is propped up in the kitchen. I won’t have to dig out my laptop to watch movies on the plane. Photographs will look great on my iPad’s new, big screen.

Will I also be editing images on my iPad? Maybe. For many, iPhoneography is “images that are shot and processed on the iPhone.” It’s a creative choice and limitation that one makes as a photographer. However, the iPad’s larger screen and the bevy of new photo apps make it an appealing tool for processing photos.

Because the iPhone’s camera often goes unnoticed, iPhoneography is freeing in that as a photographer, I am able to get shots I’d never be able to do with a DSLR or even a point-and-shoot. Carrying around a DSLR can be cumbersome. My iPhone fits in my pocket. Armed with a camera that’s always with me, I’m nearly always ready to capture a moment in time that I wouldn’t be able to otherwise.

I choose to process all of my images on the iPhone to see what my creativity, the apps, and the device are capable of. I’ve taken photographs that could have easily been saved with a few quick edits in Photoshop, but for me part of the challenge and part of the creative process is in making the edits on the iPhone’s much smaller screen. Ever try cloning in PhotoForge for iPhone? There’s a lot of “undo”. Call me a purist. Or a masochist…. One thing is certain, editing images will be much easier on an iPad where there’s room for fingers….

In the coming weeks, Life In LoFi may start reviewing the occasional iPad photography app that we find to be outstanding, but our focus will remain iPhoneography and iPhone apps.

I really can’t wait for my iPad! I know that I’ll wonder how I lived so long without this device. I think once again Apple has created a device that over time will fundamentally change the world. I’m already expanding my graphic design studio’s capabilities to produce ePubs for my clients to take advantage of this new distribution model. I’ll be one of the early adopters.

But, for my photography, I think I’ll probably stay old school for a while. Maybe someday I’ll see that the benefits of processing on an iPad outweigh the benefits of remaining “pure”. For the time being, I’ll continue creating my art on my iPhone. But I’ll bet that Life In LoFi is going to look awesome on my iPad!



About Marty Yawnick 1826 Articles
Marty is a self-employed graphic designer in the Fort Worth/Dallas Metroplex. He is an avid Rangers baseball, Chicago Cubs, Packers and Highbury Arsenal fan. In addition to capturing random moments with whatever camera is close by (usually his iPhone), his other interests include coffee, film, music, and traveling in seats 5E and 5F with his fiancé.
  • Charles Maclauchlan

    I believe I will wait a bit before deciding about an iPad. I have numerous "early adopter" scars, the most recent of which is my golly whiz-bang first mac book pro which is limited to 2GB ram. Yikes!

    Although I believe the iPad will perfectly fit a need we don't yet know we have, the most obvious right now is a larger screen to process iPhone images. This one use is I will admit very enticing but it is an EXTRA piece of equipment to be carried, it doesn't replace anything I carry now. If I am to carry extra gear to process iPhone images I seriously question the iPad as that piece of gear.

    We'll see

  • Can't wait to jump into the iPad zeitgeist, but it's not going to come with the first generation, alas. Lack of a USB port is a shocking oversight. Add Flash, or a Flash workaround, multi-tasking, front-facing camera, etc. and work out the minor kinks, and I'll be all over it like Matt Kemp on a long fly to center.

    One thing I've already noted about the iTunes store tonight (eve of iPad release): Now that many iPad apps have been released, it's really difficult to determine what app is for iPad only and which is for both. there is a toggle to filter these two but I've found it not working, or not working well.