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Home » Reviews

iPhone Photo App Review: Lumiere

Submitted by on March 18, 2011 – 1:13 am 6 Comments

 

Lumiere
Version 1.0
Price $1.99

Rating 3 stars

Bottom Line: Lumiere does a nice job of recreating the look of vintage cameras, but needs more pixels and more of its really cool, unique filters.

Lumiere is a new photo app by nebulus design that takes toy camera and analog photo style pictures. I love the name and I love the icon. It’s got some great features such as a cool live preview and a few great looking filters. The app has a few version 1.0 issues, though, which could be easily fixed in future updates.

The app is a camera. While it doesn’t support flash, it does support the front camera on equipped devices. There’s no way to import images from your camera roll or iPhone photo albums, which is really an essential feature.

Lumiere is easy to use. Swipe the screen horizontally to change the film effects.  Swipe the screen vertically to change the borders and frames. You can also shake the iPhone to randomize films and frames. Effects preview live on screen as you shoot. Photos are saved to the app’s own lightbox where they can then be saved or easily shared by e-mail, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

The filters render nicely. Film styles include several analog-style FX, such as toy camera, chromatic aberrations, a really rich monochrome, cross process and LOMO styles. One of the filters even simulates random film damage, dust and scratches. All effects preview live. It’s pretty cool to watch vignettes change and the dust and scratches move live onscreen — it’s one of the app’s better features and it would be cool if it were optional for all filters. The effects are rich and have great texture, saturation, color and tonal qualities. Lumiere does a nice job of recreating the look of vintage cameras, including, in some cases, the lack of definition from low-quality lenses. It adds a nice layer of grunge to photos.

The frames are an interesting mix of both clean and stressed analog print borders, vignettes, and even a couple of simple through-the-viewfinder (TtV) overlays

Effects and frames are not labeled, making it difficult to share “recipes”. Effects can’t be changed or stacked once rendered. There isn’t the huge variety of frames and effects like in lo-mob and other photo apps. While some of the borders look like they came right out of Hipstamatic, there’s no option to shoot square frame photos.

Lumiere saves in medium resolution on an iPhone 4 — 1440×960 pixels. That’s just under 1.4 MP which is less than the 2 MP of the original iPhone 2G camera. It’s not super low but not great either. The resolution is great for online sharing to Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter. iPhoneographers should be able to make good 5” x 7” prints. Lumiere really needs an option for larger file sizes in a future update. There is no way to save your original, full-sized, unprocessed image. Lumiere saves little EXIF data and no geo-tag info.

Lumiere creates effects that don’t look like the hand-me-down analog cameras we used to shoot with from our childhood. They look like the crappy toy cameras that we shoot with now as adults — cameras that are designed with photographic defects in mind.

It’s a quirky app. It’s got just enough of a mix of Hipstamatic, lo-mob, and Plastic Bullet Camera to be interesting, but it needs improvements like features that are standard in most other camera apps. It also needs more of the really cool, unique filters like its random film damage and lens distortions to really stand on its own. It’s got some good features. I just wish there were more of them.

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch (4th generation), iPad 2 Wi-Fi, and iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G. Requires iOS 4.2 or later.

Lumiere - nebulus design

=M=

~~~~

Marty Yawnick

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.

  • bigfried

    I just bought this to try it out.

    It's interesting. The main selling point is that it works in real time so you can see exactly what you are shooting and that feels great. It has a good simple quick interface and the view is full screen. Interesting to slide a frame over the image with your finger, like putting a filter on an analogue camera.

    However there are not many options for effect or frame, probably 10 each. Resolution is not maximum.But it has a lot of potential to develop. What immediately springs to mind when using it is that it would be great to have a slider control or 2 to change the effect in real time, for example for contrast, or effect amount.

    If the Hipsta crew are checking this out they would get some good ideas of a direction to take.

    • http://lumiereapp.com Nigel

      Hi this is Nigel the developer of Lumiere here,

      You can actually change the effect of the filter by using two fingers and sliding up/down the screen, its a bit cryptic and you need to look at the instructions to find this out. Sorry about that!
      We are busy getting the next version ready for release, it will have a much more obvious slider for manipulating the effect.

      We also plan to have support for multiple resolution output so you can choose between full 2592×1936 resolution which takes about 5seconds from pressing shutter to being able to take another shot, or just over 1second for 960×640 resolution, and of course a few options in between the two!

      Glad your enjoying using it so far, we've got lots more additions for the future!

  • cecily

    I bought the app and it shows up on my itunes as being bought but when I sync my iphone it won't load it?
    Any ideas of what I need to do?
    Thanks!!

  • kiara

    it's difficult to cancel or go back to the the files after trying to mail the images. Is there another way of getting the pictures on the computer other then facebook

    • http://lumiereapp.com Nigel

      Hi Kiara,

      You can access all the photos directly using itunes file sharing, attach the device to you computer and start iTunes.
      Click on the device, and then look at the apps tab, scroll down and you'll find the file sharing area.
      In the list on the left you'll find Lumière click on it and you'll see all the photo's you've taken on the right!

      With a bit of luck the next update will be live on the app store very soon. For more support drop us an email at lumiere@nebulus-design.co.uk or join our facebook page for information and updates:
      https://www.facebook.com/Lumiere.photography

      cheers

      Nigel

    • http://lumiereapp.com Nigel

      Hi Kiara,

      You can access all the photos directly using itunes file sharing, attach the device to you computer and start iTunes.
      Click on the device, and then look at the apps tab, scroll down and you'll find the file sharing area.
      In the list on the left you'll find Lumière click on it and you'll see all the photo's you've taken on the right!

      With a bit of luck the next update will be live on the app store very soon. For more support drop us an email at lumiere@nebulus-design.co.uk or join our facebook page for information and updates:
      https://www.facebook.com/Lumiere.photography

      cheers

      Nigel