Life in LoFi: iPhoneography » Opinion http://lifeinlofi.com iPhone Photo / Mobile Photography News, Showcases, Reviews Tue, 09 Dec 2014 19:12:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 2014: Happy New Year! http://lifeinlofi.com/2014/01/01/2014-happy-new-year/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2014/01/01/2014-happy-new-year/#comments Wed, 01 Jan 2014 21:20:00 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=26200 2014 is here and Life In LoFi wishes you and yours a very Happy and successful New Year! iPhoneographically, may you get your shot, may your light be perfect, and may your auto-focus always lock!

"2014: Happy New Year!." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Happy  New Year from Life In LoFi iPhoneography

2014 is here and Life In LoFi wishes you and yours a very Happy and successful New Year! iPhoneographically, may you get your shot, may your light be perfect, and may your auto-focus always lock!

As time moves forward, we always hope that this year is better than the last and we certainly hope your 2014 is even better than your 2013.

As we take a look back at iPhoneography in 2013, it was another breakthrough year for the art.

2013 did not give us the iPhone 6. Instead, Apple released the iPhone 5S, an incremental upgrade to the iPhone 5 series. Under the hood, the iPhone 5S is actually a huge improvement over previous devices with its new CPU and 64-bit architecture. The camera did not get the bump in megapixels many iPhoneographers were hoping for, but got a new slightly faster lens, increased pixel size on the image sensor, and other subtle improvements. 8MP image size is really plenty for most personal digital camera uses and I’m glad Apple went the quality over quantity route with the camera for this iteration of the device.

2013 also saw the introduction of the iPhone 5C — basically a colorful repackaging of Apple’s excellent original iPhone 5.

iPhoneography Makes More Inroads

I’m glad to see more outlets using the word “iPhoneography” to describe what we do. We really do have our own unique place beneath the larger Photography umbrella and I think what we do is worthy of its own label.

iPhoneography and mobile photography continued to make inroads into the mainstream. No longer a collection of passionate artists working from the lo-fi fringes of photography, moreso than at any other time in the art form’s brief history, iPhoneography is an accepted and ever-present form of visual communication across the media. Where an iPhone photograph used in a high profile slot was not too long ago news in itself, images shot with a mobile phone have quickly become yet another tool in helping media to communicate with more immediacy. For better or worse, this year, some major media outlets are even supplanting dedicated photography departments in favor of iPhone photography and videography.

One of the coolest news developments in 2013 was that Patrick O’Neill, who invented the popular olloclip iPhone lenses, was named Entrepreneur Magazine’s “Entrepreneur of 2013.”

“I thought, wouldn’t it be cool to put camera lenses on the phone like we do with our big cameras? The problem was,” he recalls, “how do you elegantly mount it?”

His solution: attach lenses on either side of a small plastic sleeve that could be slipped over the iPhone’s camera lens. “I felt more strongly about this than anything I’ve ever done in my life,” O’Neill says. “I put everything into it. I put my whole house on the line.”

New killer photo apps? I’m not sure there were many apps that “delighted” me as much as discovering the original CameraBag app years ago, but there have been several excellent photo apps released this year.

I think three of the standout iPhone photo apps for me this year are Handy Photo, Perspective Correct, and Adobe Photoshop Touch. Each app is not without its flaws or omissions, but these are among the standout photo apps for me in 2013.

Handy Photo is a very powerful photo editor that just seems to do everything it does very well. The tools are among the best of their kind on iPhone and although the interface may take a little getting used to, it never really takes you out of the workspace.

Adobe Photoshop Touch is the promise of Photoshop and Creative Cloud realized for iPhone. It’s the first iteration of the classic powerhouse image editor that’s worthy of the moniker “Photoshop for iPhone.” Although it’s still missing some of the features that apps like Filterstorm and Leonardo have, it’s got a very powerful tool set, a fairly familiar interface, and integration with Adobe’s Creative Cloud, allowing photographers and artists to easily create and work an image on iPhone, iPad and desktop versions.

Perspective Correct is just a handy utility that quickly and easily solves the problem of unwanted angled perspective lines in an iPhone photo.

2013 saw iPhoneography take center stage at MacWorld, one of the Mac ecosystem’s biggest annual events. iPhoneography’s All-Stars took the stage for several days in San Francisco last February, including authors Dan Marcolina, Stephanie Calabrese-Roberts, photographer and iPhone evangelist Jack Hollingsworth, iPhoggy blogger Richard Gray, iPhoneographers Karen Divine, Alon Goldsmith, and many others. I was also honored to present and participate as well. It was the largest gathering of iPhoneography’s movers and shakers to date.

Last year was also the year that Glyn Evans, the Founder of The iPhoneography Blog and the person who is credited with coining the phrase “iPhoneography”, called it quits. After over four years of publishing the first blog dedicated to iPhoneography, Glyn has moved on. A placeholder now stands at the portal of iPhoneography.com.

Over the years, new iPhoneography blogs have sprung up and flourished over the past year or two, including Eric Rozen’s excellent resource Hipstography and Emil Pakarklis’ excellent iPhone Photography School. Despite our hiatuses (hiatii?), Life In LoFi will still continue to be a source of reviews and other resources in the coming year as we pick back up with a regular publishing schedule.

While on the subject of Hipstamatic, the long-awaited Ben Lowy lens was finally released. I honestly thought I’d never see that one outside of a beta copy of Hipstamatic. We even found Color Thief, a tool to help recreate the look and tonal qualities of the Lowy lens.

Looking ahead for 2014 for myself and Life In LoFi, I still love creating photographs and still plan on publishing the blog. Writing a blog like this can be a full-time job if you let it. Unfortunately, that also has to be sandwiched in between my real full-time job, my family, and my fiancé and often times life can find itself way out of balance. Although I’ve been focusing on Type A, my graphic design studio a lot for the past few months, I’m able to now get back to shooting, testing and writing — all things I love to do. There still may be times when the blog has to take a back seat to work and sleep, but I hope to strike a better balance in my life in 2014 in a lot of areas.

I’m looking forward to 2014! I look forward to the rumors of the Apple “hot stove league” to get started up for the next iPhone. That’s always fun to see the difference between “expert” speculation and reality.

Again, my personal wish for you for this new year, above all, is happiness and success in the new year and beyond. Find what gives you happiness and serenity and hold on to it, whatever that may be.

Have a safe, happy, and well-focused New Year!

=M=
Marty Yawnick
Publisher, Life In LoFi: iPhoneography

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"2014: Happy New Year!." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Friday Talkback: Ads on Instagram http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/09/13/friday-talkback-ads-instagram/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/09/13/friday-talkback-ads-instagram/#comments Fri, 13 Sep 2013 12:53:49 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=25703 Today, you're the pundits. What do you think of Instagram running ads on the platform? Will it affect how much you use Instagram? Does it even matter any more?

"Friday Talkback: Ads on Instagram." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Instagram is for sale again, but not how you’d think

In a news week dominated by Apple’s iPhone announcement, one other news story that pretty much hit with a whimper is that Instagram hit 150 million users and are planning to roll out ads next year.

What do you think of ads on Instagram? This is the topic of today’s Friday talkback.

They say that nothing is free, especially on the internet. If you can’t figure out what a site is selling, odds are you are the product. Instagram parent company Facebook figured this out years ago.

It’s been a widely held notion that ads on Instagram were only a matter of time and now we have a timeline. I suspect that the first ads will work a lot like Facebook’s sponsored posts. That is, they’ll appear as items in your feed that make you wonder how they got there. Not blatant ads per se, but the more subtle type that blends into the content that you are engaged with. I doubt they will add a banner ad slot to the Instagram apps, but without details we can only guess.

This keeps Instagram free for users and shareholders happy, but will these ads just blend into the Instagram experience or feel more like a further intrusion into our privacy — hey, that’s MY Instagram feed!

So, once again, today, you’re the pundits. What do you think of Instagram running bona-fide ads on the platform? How do you think they’ll look? Will it affect how much you use Instagram? Does it even matter any more?

Let us know what you think. Sound off in the comments below.

=M=

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"Friday Talkback: Ads on Instagram." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Friday Talkback: Apple’s September Event – Tell Us What You Think http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/09/06/friday-talkback-apples-september-event-tell-us-what-you-think/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/09/06/friday-talkback-apples-september-event-tell-us-what-you-think/#comments Fri, 06 Sep 2013 07:20:52 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=25494 On Tuesday, September 10 at 10 AM Pacific time, Apple has scheduled one of its famous events, meaning there will be some sort of big announcement. Here's your chance to sound off.

"Friday Talkback: Apple’s September Event – Tell Us What You Think." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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On Tuesday, September 10 at 10 AM Pacific time, the big show continues. Apple has scheduled one of its famous events, meaning there will be some sort of big announcement.

Here’s your chance to sound off. >>>

Steve Jobs brought to Apple a flair for the dramatic. Thankfully, this is a tradition that Tim Cook appears to be keeping.

There’s been a lot of rumor and speculation surrounding this event, but all we know for sure is that Apple will announce something and that it involves several trendy colors.

I think at least one new iPhone is a given. The specs on it are still anyone’s guess. Even the rumor sites can’t come to a consensus.

I personally think we are in for several really good announcements on Tuesday.

For today’s Friday talkback, what do you think Apple will be announcing on Tuesday? New iPhones? AppleTV? iTunes Radio? iOS 7? The big new Mac OS update? Are you excited or just plain over the hype?

It’s all wide-open and today you’re the pundit. Let’s start some good speculation and rumors this weekend!

Let us know what you think in the comments below. The thread is open. Jump in!

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"Friday Talkback: Apple’s September Event – Tell Us What You Think." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Tripods for iPhone 5: What Do You Use and Why? Discuss…. http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/06/19/tripods-for-iphone-5-what-do-you-use-and-why/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/06/19/tripods-for-iphone-5-what-do-you-use-and-why/#comments Wed, 19 Jun 2013 17:57:45 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=23155 Tripods for iPhone 5; what do you use and why? Discuss....

"Tripods for iPhone 5: What Do You Use and Why? Discuss….." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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What iPhone Tripod Do You Use and Why?

We get questions. Some of them here. Some of them over on our Facebook page.

LoFi reader David Williams just posted a great one on Life In LoFi’s Facebook page that we’re also rebroadcasting here: “Tripods for iPhone 5; what do you use and why?”

I’ve got his entire post and more after the jump. >>>

Tripods for iPhone 5; what do you use and why?

I upgraded to iPhone 5 a few months back and have been slowly swapping over all my accessories to the new hardware. With the 4S I used a Gorillapod for my tripod but I’m wondering what else people are using for their iPhoneography needs?

Because the original question was posted to Facebook, I’ve disabled comments here, so head over to our Facebook page to join or read the discussion.

I’ll get the discussion started here. I have used an original Joby Gorillapod since my old iPhone 2G. It still works great. I currently go to my Gorillapod and ANYCASE tripod adapter or my PhoGo by DiffCase for my iPhone 5.

While there are a lot of great tripods and mounts available for iPhones and other mobile devices, the Joby Gorillapod is an excellent tabletop tripod (poletop, branchtop, fencetop…) that’s lightweight and fits easily into my laptop bag or pocket. Although the Glif for iPhone 5 Tripod Mount is a sweet little device, I don’t use one because it doesn’t work with an iPhone case. The ANYCASE iPhone Tripod Adapter is nearly as small and lets me keep my iPhone in its case when I mount it.

If you are new to the blog, head over to this classic post here to find out why I never use a “naked” iPhone.

=M=

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"Tripods for iPhone 5: What Do You Use and Why? Discuss….." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Hey, Life In LoFi… Where Have You Guys Been? http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/05/07/hey-life-in-lofi-where-have-you-guys-been/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/05/07/hey-life-in-lofi-where-have-you-guys-been/#comments Tue, 07 May 2013 20:22:58 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=22819 We're not going away. We're still here. We've got another couple of weeks before I'll really have a lot of time to give to this blog, but time is opening back up.

"Hey, Life In LoFi… Where Have You Guys Been?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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We get questions and one of them recently has been “Where have you guys been? Is everything okay?”

We’re not going away. We’re still here. Due to an extremely demanding production schedule in my graphic design studio, I’ve been unable to devote any time to the blog for the past few weeks. In addition to the monthly and quarterly publications Type A Design usually works on, we’ve also been building out several large websites — two of them are taking print magazines online. These are some pretty high-profile projects that I’m pretty excited about!

We’ve got another couple of weeks before I’ll really have a lot of time to give to this blog, but time is opening back up. I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing here.

As always, thank you for making Life In LoFi a part of your day.

=M=
Marty Yawnick
Publisher

"Hey, Life In LoFi… Where Have You Guys Been?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Talkback: What Are Some of Your Favorite Photo Apps? http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/01/27/talkback-what-are-some-of-your-favorite-photo-apps/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/01/27/talkback-what-are-some-of-your-favorite-photo-apps/#comments Mon, 28 Jan 2013 04:21:09 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=21032 While I'm tied up trying to put the finishing touches on my upcoming presentation at Macworld this week. I thought I'd throw an easy topic for discussion out there and see what kind of replies we get from the community. What are some of your favorite photo apps that you're currently using?

"Talkback: What Are Some of Your Favorite Photo Apps?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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While I’m tied up trying to put the finishing touches on my upcoming presentation at Macworld this week. I thought I’d throw an easy topic for discussion out there and see what kind of replies we get from the community.

What are some of your favorite photo apps that you’re currently using? These don’t necessarily have to be the biggies — Instagram, Camera+, etc. — but your favorite day-in-day-out go-to photo apps. I’ll get things started off after the jump. From there, please discuss your faves in the comments of this post. >>>

I’ve been spending a lot of time going over the history of iPhoneography recently. One of the trends I saw is how sharing the iPhoneography community seems to be with its resources, techniques and recipes. Websites like Tina Rice’s Combo Apps blog and Nicki Fitz-Gerald’s iPhoneography Central were created for sharing iPhoneography apps and techniques.

My toolbox is up on display in My Camera Bag, which is desperately in need of an update. My photo app tastes lean towards apps that recreate the very style that digital photography has replaced — the look of film. I like a subtley apped image that looks like a photo. In no particular order are a few of my go-to apps that I’m currently using:

Hipstamatic

Yeah, I still love Hipstamatic. Since the rise of Instagram, it seems that Hipstamatic has become overlooked in iPhoneographic circles for a number of reasons. Hipstamatic is still a wonderful app and there’s nothing like it in the App Store. It’s the most expensive $1.99 app I own and worth every penny. The quality of its filters is unsurpassed. Colors, textures, tones and now variable faux depth of field — it’s filters are lush, rich and colorful. One of the things I love about hipstamatic is using the lens and film combinations. Each has their own look and a knowledge of the characteristics of each lens and filter helps get better results from the app. It’s like shooting with an old film camera where you have your favorite, well… film, lens and body combinations. Only cheaper and digital.

ClassicPAN

This was misskiwi’s first photo app and still one of my favorites. It’s a single-frame pano app with the great set of original misskiwi “films,” still among the best analog film recreations of any photo app. The framing creates dramatic cinematic shots. It’s also the only photo app available with a simulated LOMO SprocketRocket filter. Sure, you can shoot, filter, crop, and vignette. ClassicPAN gets it all done in camera and saves your original image to boot.

Simply B&W and Noir Photo

The two black & white apps I use most. Simply B&W is an amazingly simple app to convert images to great looking black & white photos. It’s the first to use colored filters to enhance the conversion. That’s similar to using colored filters to enhance the image when shooting analog black & white film.

I use Noir Photo when I want a little more drama in my black & white conversions. Noir Photo adds more contrast, accentuates more highlights and with its great looking vignette tool, really lets me focus light where I want on the image. Using this app reminds me a lot of some of the old cinematic techniques of the silent film epics that used lighting and vignette to alter the look of a subject.

LensFlare and LensLight

The best lens flare, bokeh and chromatic aberrations available on iPhone. Nothing else comes close.

LensFlare ( )

LensLight ( )

Other apps I use often are:

Hueless (). I get the urge to shoot in black & white, rather than convert later. Hueless has the best tools and interface of any black & white camera in the App Store. It’s fast and gives me the tools to create great black & white images in camera.

Squaready Pro ( ) for quickly cropping and prepping square images for Instagram. I used the free version so often, I dropped the buck (it’s now two) for the ad-free version.

AnalogColor ( ), a great little app for quickly adding retro film looks and leaks to an image.

PhotoForge2 ( ). I’ve been turning to this one more recently. No particular reason other than it’s a powerful, stable, full-featured photo editor that has everything I need.

Okay, your turn. What are some of your go-to photo apps? Let us know in the comments below.

=M=

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"Talkback: What Are Some of Your Favorite Photo Apps?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Happy Birthday, iPhone! http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/01/09/happy-birthday-iphone/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2013/01/09/happy-birthday-iphone/#comments Wed, 09 Jan 2013 22:26:40 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=20639 It was six years ago today that Steve Jobs announced "Today, Apple is going to reinvent the phone." The original iPhone was announced by Steve Jobs on January 9, 2007 after months of the standard Apple rumors and speculation.

"Happy Birthday, iPhone!." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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iPhone 2G

One of my original iPhone 2G devices

The iPhone Turns 6 Today!

It was six years ago today that Steve Jobs announced “Today, Apple is going to reinvent the phone.”

The original iPhone was announced by Steve Jobs on January 9, 2007 after months of the standard Apple rumors and speculation. Click here for a video of Steve Jobs announcing the iPhone at Macworld six years ago.

The iPhone didn’t reach stores for another six months, hitting the streets here in the U.S. on June 29, 2007. I didn’t get mine until about a year later, right after the iPhone 3G was announced in June of 2008. Until then, I was devout a two device BlackBerry and Palm guy.

The original iPhone 2G came with a 2MP camera. It was a fixed focus camera with fairly poor light sensitivity by today’s standards. Although the images were often muddy making Dynamic Range Correction apps like Perfectly Clear a necessity, it still created brighter, more vibrant color images than many other mobile phones of the time. To me, the original iPhone 2G camera had unique color and tonal qualities — almost a digital lo-fi like a Holga, Diana or other LOMO camera and it’s how Life In LoFi got its name. It’s because of the 2G’s camera that I started this blog. In many ways, it was a life changer.

I still have one of our original iPhone 2G devices. It still works great even though I haven’t used it as a phone in years. I can still shoot with some classic photo apps including Polarize. Hipstamatic plus the 2G’s noise, low ISO and relatively small dynamic range creates some outstanding digital lo-fi photos that have yet to be duplicated with any subsequent iPhone.

Smartphones would have eventually changed photography no matter what. If you had one, it was a camera that was always with you (trust me… always). I also think the opening of the App Store and the success of early photo apps — allowing users to not only tweak and correct photos but to quickly and easily add a number of effects drastically — changed not only that we shoot, but how we expect it to look.

Before my original iPhone, I shot mostly with a Fuji FinePix DSLR. Since getting my first iPhone and especially with the subsequent improvements in the iPhone camera over the years, I shoot pretty much exclusively with my iPhone 5 now.

Thanks, Steve, for changing the world again. Happy Birthday, iPhone.

=M=

Got your own iPhone story or birthday tribute? Share it below in the comments!

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"Happy Birthday, iPhone!." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays From Life In LoFi http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/12/25/merry-christmas-and-happy-holidays-from-life-in-lofi/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/12/25/merry-christmas-and-happy-holidays-from-life-in-lofi/#comments Tue, 25 Dec 2012 19:19:45 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=20209 Happy Holidays from Life In LoFi!

"Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays From Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Wherever you are, no matter which holidays you may celebrate this time of year, we hope that they are spent happily in the warmth of family, friends and loved ones.

May the joy and happiness of this season be yours all year long.

Happy Holidays from Life In LoFi and our extended families to yours.

Marty Yawnick
Steve Thomas

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"Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays From Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Life In LoFi turns 3 today http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/30/life-in-lofi-turns-3-today/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/30/life-in-lofi-turns-3-today/#comments Sun, 30 Sep 2012 18:39:58 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=19014 Today is the third anniversary of my first post on Life In LoFi. Over the years with your support, LoFi has grown from a small Wordpress.com blog to one of the leading iPhoneography blogs today.

"Life In LoFi turns 3 today." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Today is the third anniversary of my first post on Life In LoFi. Over the years with your support, LoFi has grown from a small WordPress.com blog to one of the leading iPhoneography blogs today.

I like to think LoFi has done some good over the years. We’ve broken a few stories of significance. Rather than simply copy and pasting App Store announcements, we’ve made the more difficult choice of writing full reviews so you get the benefit of hands-on experience with an app. Along with a great group of part-time bloggers here, we’ve confirmed that some photo apps really are great, some really are lousy, and we’ve discovered some gems that would have been overlooked by many in the App Store. I’m happy we can share those with you. I’m also happy that we can help save you a buck or two here and there.

Speaking of a buck or two here and there, Steve Thomas has been absolutely awesome keeping up with Life In LoFi’s Facebook page. There, Steve helps post and share some great photo app sales and freebies. If you follow us on Facebook, odds are that Steve has saved you some bucks this year.

Finally, I want to thank each one of you read this blog, either occasionally or on a regular basis. I feel like we’re all friends with a big common interest here. Without you, I wouldn’t be able to do a lot of what I’m able to do here on Life In LoFi. I realize that there are a lot of other iPhoneography blogs out there. I appreciate the time that you spend here.

I originally started Life In LoFi because the camera in the original iPhone 2G was good, but not that good. The early iPhones had a unique signature digital lo-fi look to them. It’s not lost on me that the iPhone’s camera continues to improve at a rapid pace and the new iPhone 5 camera is pretty darned good. We’re still going to help you get the best pictures in-camera so that you can app some great digital lo-fi looks.

My plans for the blog for the coming year are modest. My goal is to hopefully bring on a few more occasional writers to contribute their voice into the mix. Otherwise, look for me to continue to write, praise, whine, and even cuss occasionally. I look forward to this time I get to spend on LoFi. Thank you for letting me share it with you.

=M=

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"Life In LoFi turns 3 today." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Opinion: Snapseed and getting gobbled up by a Big Player. http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/18/opinion-snapseed-and-getting-gobbled-up-by-a-big-player/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/18/opinion-snapseed-and-getting-gobbled-up-by-a-big-player/#comments Tue, 18 Sep 2012 10:21:28 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=18844 One thing that Snapseed and Instagram have in common is that they were both recently purchased by the two biggest players in the game. I have a feeling that's not good for either app.

"Opinion: Snapseed and getting gobbled up by a Big Player.." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Instagram!

There. I said it. I must be one of the cool kids now. Huffington Post, Engadget, TechCrunch, The Verge and a bunch of other sites and blogs that should know better today are calling Snapseed the Instagram rival — many of them in the headline of their post. I’ll bet most of those writers hadn’t even heard of Snapseed until today. If they had, they would know that the two are not rivals. They are far from it. Snapseed is about photography and creating the best image. Instagram is about connecting with people and sharing photos. I don’t know of anyone saying “follow me back on the Snapseed network.”

One thing the two apps have in common is that they were both recently purchased by the two biggest players in the game.

The goal for many a start up is to get bought out, make fat cash, as founding visionaries get a seat on the board, and promise that the acquired company will be run “independently under our umbrella.” I’m happy that the teams of both Instagram and Snapseed have gotten their payday. Well done. I also think today’s announcement starts the death knell of Snapseed as we know it.

Google doesn’t have a great track record of letting acquired companies run as standalone entities. All of its current properties are very tightly integrated with Google. Unless you’re concerned about privacy and information mining, that’s not necessarily bad, but it’s much different than the way Snapseed operates now.

I don’t share the same view as many others who have reported this today. I don’t think this acquisition is Google’s quick and easy attempt at creating a social network to rival Instagram. I see this as Google trying to beef up all of the offerings in its photo products portfolio. I’m afraid I don’t see Google in the off-the-shelf imaging software business or in the App Store business, five bucks at a time.

I think the upcoming release of Snapseed for Android will immediately add more clout to the ‘Droid Photography platform. I’m unaware of any high-end photo editing apps currently available for Android. Sorry, Droidographers, but on the iPhone, there are far better image editors than Photoshop Express. I could not find any Droid photo apps comparable to Snapseed, Filterstorm, PhotoForge2 or PhotoGene2. I think we’ll see expedited development for other, smaller screen Android devices as well. Continued development is good and cross-platform support benefits all mobile photographers.

Over time, I see Google beefing up Picasa’s features using technology and algorithms from Nik’s desktop suite of plugins — HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro, and Sharpener Pro. Or, imagine Google beefing up its own Camera or Picasa app for Android with the pro-quality features of Snapseed. With today’s announcement, Google just bought the tools and the talent to jumpstart both projects.

Recently, Google purchased Sparrow, a third-party GMail client for Mac. Google then immediately mothballed the app, moving Sparrow’s five employees into “other projects for GMail.” Prior to that, the search giant bought social advertising service Meebo and shifted all of its employees to Google+. Google has a long history of mining startups for talent, integrating teams, and shuttering acquisitions. However, past performance is no guarantee they’ll do the same thing here.

Right now, I believe Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg when he says that there are no plans for “making (Instagram) come into our infrastructure” — not right away, at least. With Google’s history of assimilating startups and their talent, I can’t say I’m as confident that won’t happen with Nik and Snapseed. I have to say that right now I’m a little concerned over the long-term future of this premier photo editing app on the iOS platform. I’m afraid that under Google, we’ll see Snapseed for iOS languish, relegated to bug fix releases, while its development team is reassigned to Google’s other properties.

There’s a lot of love for Snapseed on the iOS platform — currently over 9 million users. And I’m happy for the Nik Software team — good on ya! I hope I’m very wrong about Google’s next moves.

=M=

What do you think about Google’s acquisition of Nik Software and Snapseed? Let us know in the talkback below.

~~~~

 

 

"Opinion: Snapseed and getting gobbled up by a Big Player.." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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The word “iPhoneography” and why one label is important http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/05/the-word-iphoneography-and-why-one-label-is-important/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/09/05/the-word-iphoneography-and-why-one-label-is-important/#comments Wed, 05 Sep 2012 05:12:32 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=18367 As the popularity of the iPhone grows and more users discover the greatness of the iPhone camera, I'm seeing more and more influential pundits try to invent and popularize a word for iPhone photography. Recently, I've seen "iPhonography", "iPhotography", "iPhonetography", "Mobile Photography" and many others. They all try to label a new art form that was so perfectly named years ago by Glyn Evans. We have a word for this emerging art form. It's called "iPhoneography."

"The word “iPhoneography” and why one label is important." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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iPhone 4S

As the popularity of the iPhone grows and more users discover the greatness of the iPhone camera, I’m seeing more and more influential pundits try to invent and popularize a word for iPhone photography. Recently, I’ve seen “iPhonography”, “iPhotography”, “iPhonetography”, “Mobile Photography” and many others. They all try to label a new art form that was so perfectly named years ago by Glyn Evans.

We have a word for this emerging art form. It’s called “iPhoneography.” The word is brilliant. It’s a gift. And as a community of artists, I strongly suggest we eschew the other attempts at trying to reinvent this wheel and embrace “iPhoneography.”

A brief history on the word for those of you who are fairly new to the art. Back in November, 2008, Glyn Evans launched his blog, iPhoneography.com. The word is a simple contraction of “iPhone” and “photography”. There’s the possibility that the word may have seen casual use before that, but with the launch of his blog, Glyn made it official. Since then, Apple has been very generous in not defending its patent rights to the word “iPhone” and giving its tacit approval (and more recently quite vocal approval) to the art.

iPhoneography is an awesome word. It perfectly illustrates what we do as artists — we take photos with our iPhone. When I tell someone I’m an iPhoneographer, one of the first things they say to me is “Well, I shoot with a real camera.” The word makes pretty clear the device I shoot with. After they’ve seen my portfolio (on my iPhone, of course) and they’ve picked their jaws up off the floor, I think they respect iPhoneography quite a bit more.

Other spelling variations simply look like a misspelled word to me. iPhonetography isn’t smooth off the tongue — it’s a clunky word. iPhotography doesn’t tell me anything about the device — it could be any style of photography shot with a stutter. iPhoneography is a smooth and appropriate word, both spoken and visually.

iPhoneography is Iconic Branding

Why is one word important? Branding. Like it or not, labeling is important in our society. It makes it easier to categorize and sort. Good branding is important for long term success. In a word, good branding sends a very clear message about the expectation of the product (or art).

The word “iPhoneography” is excellent, iconic branding and sends that very clear, focused message. Without previously knowing anything about the art, hearing the word “iPhoneography” clearly and concisely spells out what we do in a way that “iPhotography” and other variations don’t.

“iPhoneography” is that rare breed of word that’s its own sub-brand within other brands and sub-brands. As I see it, the breakdown looks like this: Photography > Mobile Photography > iPhoneography. It’s on par with Lomography, another iconic sub-brand of photography. There are few, if any, calling it “Lomotography” or “Lotography”.

Yes, we are photographers. We are mobile photographers. All cameras are mobile. I get that. What about Android users — aren’t they iPhoneographers, too? Maybe. Someday. The difference between iPhoneographers and the rest of the photography genres lies in the thousands of photo apps that allow us to process and share our art using only an iPhone. You can’t do that with a Nikon or a Canon. The Android market, Google Play, is growing, but lacks the sheer number of photo apps and many of the best photo apps are iOS only. iPhoneography truly is a unique style among the photographic arts.

As an art movement, we need one label for the scholars to write about. Academia likes to do that. iPhoneography is the word with the Wiki. Try looking up “iPhotography.” If we are calling ourselves a dozen different things, we muddy up the genre. The art is the same, but those who write such things are at a loss to accurately describe it. We run the risk of brand dilution, and that does not help us as a community in the long run.

Singular branding gives us the strength of numbers. The strength of numbers helps give us recognition. Recognition helps give us credibility. Credibility helps the art and opens doors for us that would otherwise be blocked to random, smaller groups of artists who can’t unify behind a single name.

If you’re hacked off that you didn’t think of the word first, get over it. Both Glyn and Apple have been very gracious in letting us freely use their intellectual property. Neither make any royalties from the word, by the way. I would love to be the guy who could say that I invented the word, but I’m not. I’m not whining about it, trying to create my own variation. From the early days, I embraced our gift. iPhoneography has been a part of my masthead since day one of this blog.

iPhoneography is the perfect name for our art. I am behind the word — the label — 100%. I know many of us hate labels, but we need to stop the splintering off. We need to stop the brand dilution. As a community of artists, I think iPhoneography is the word we should all embrace. That’s what the guy who invented the word calls it.

=M=

~~~~

I know many LoFi readers call themselves by other labels. Feel free to discuss your label of preference and why in the comments below.

"The word “iPhoneography” and why one label is important." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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P1xels Indiegogo Campaign: Why P1xels is important http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/08/17/p1xels-indiegogo-campaign-why-p1xels-is-important/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/08/17/p1xels-indiegogo-campaign-why-p1xels-is-important/#comments Fri, 17 Aug 2012 07:11:40 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=17845 P1xels.com has launched an Indiegogo campaign to finance the revamping of P1xels.com. The new site is being recoded from scratch and modernized in HTML5 and will offer much more advanced features than the site currently offers.

"P1xels Indiegogo Campaign: Why P1xels is important." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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P1xels.com has launched an Indiegogo campaign to finance the revamping of P1xels.com. The new site is being recoded from scratch and modernized in HTML5 and will offer much more advanced features than the site currently offers. The new site will offer artists much more control over their works, provide more social network-style features, and most importantly for artists, help connect creators and consumers.

The Indiegogo campaign is offering some great rewards at various donation levels. Find out more and why I think P1xels is important after the jump. >>>

The new site isn’t simply a WordPress makeover. The new site will feature Retina display support for iPad, iPhone, and any other Retina-display ready devices as well as touch-enabled navigation for mobile devices. It will allow for vastly increased interactivity, elegant site navigation, article/artist/gallery feature presentation, artist tools, and more. E-commerce for prints & merchandise will be built into the site. These changes have been planned for a while and many user feature requests have been taken into consideration.

We have a broad selection of rewards for contributors, from prints, to t-shirts, music, digital downloads, and more based on contribution level.

Why P1xels is Important

Through the artistic passion and vision of Knox Bronson, P1xels has been a pioneering force in the short history of iPhoneography. Pixels At An Exhibition was the first curated online gallery of iPhoneography. A few months later, P1xels emerged from the virtual world and into the real on by hosting iPhoneography’s first brick and mortar gallery show at the Giorgi Gallery in Oakland. Knox and P1xels were the first to be invited by Apple to produce iPhoneography events in Apple Stores around the country to introduce the medium to the public. I’m very proud to say I was part of the Chicago event. Knox was the first major interview on the Flipboard platform as well as the first and only iPhonic art in featured premium content on Flipboard.

Without P1xels, all of these things would have eventually happened in iPhoneography, but I truly believe that the art would not be the same without its early involvement. There would have been a first brick and mortar iPhoneography show sometime, but combined with Knox’s detailed and particular curation, the brick and mortar shows which introduced the art form to the general public got off to an excellent start. From the beginning, Knox set very high standards for P1xels artists. I think without his vision, iPhoneography would be very different today.

P1xels remains the only curated iPhoneography web site. The quality of the works selected every day is uniformly excellent and includes many different photographic and artistic styles.

So, that’s why I’m supporting Knox and P1xels in this Indiegogo campaign and I urge you to consider doing the same. Knox and I have had many discussions about the direction of P1xels, the future of iPhonic art, as he likes to call it, and the impact of ever-improving photographic capabilities of the iPhone and other mobile devices on what began as a truly lo-fi artistic medium. P1xels 2.0 will be a better site — a network for artists to share and connect. It will open up opportunities for artists to sell their works — not just prints, but valuable gallery edition fine art prints.

P1xels is the premier online gallery of iPhonic art and iPhoneography. Knox’s dedication to the art is tireless. In supporting the next generation of P1xels, we are helping one of iPhonegraphy’s biggest champions to help continue to grow the art out of the virtual world and into the real one.

To join this campaign, visit the P1xels Indiegogo Campaign page here.

=M=

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"P1xels Indiegogo Campaign: Why P1xels is important." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Instagram updated. No longer old iPhone-friendly http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/08/01/instagram-updated-no-longer-old-iphone-friendly/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/08/01/instagram-updated-no-longer-old-iphone-friendly/#comments Wed, 01 Aug 2012 06:36:20 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=17471 This post will be relevant to maybe a few dozen readers. I'm one of them. The new Instagram 2.5.1 update was recently released. For the first time, it's no longer old iPhone-friendly.

"Instagram updated. No longer old iPhone-friendly." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Instagram now requires iOS 4.0 or newer

This post will be relevant to maybe a few dozen readers. I’m one of them. The new Instagram 2.5.1 update was recently released. Here’s what’s new:

– Bug fixes
– New Flickr authentication support

Not mentioned in the App Store description is that with this update, Instagram now requires iOS 4.0 or newer. UPDATE 01.11.13: More recent Instagram updates have changed the minimum iOS requirements to iOS 4.3. This means that owners of iPhone 3G or older won’t be able to update, install, or reinstall Instagram on their iPhone.

Through version 2.5.0, Instagram was the highest profile app in a dwindling number of photo apps that still supported iPhone OS 3. The original iPhone 2G won’t run any OS newer than 3.1.3. The iPhone 3G will run iOS 4, but many owners reported that their iPhones run better with the older operating system.

Don’t panic. Nearly all iPhones and iPads now run iOS 4 or newer. You’re okay.

Why would anyone still be using an old iPhone? There’s still a lot of functionality in one. If you’ve upgraded yours, odds are you gave your old device to a family member or a friend. For someone who’s “upgrading” from a non-smartphone, even a used iPhone 3G is a huge improvement. There are still plenty of apps — photo and non — that will run on an old iPhone, but that number is dwindling. Most old installed apps will still run fine. Updates will simply stop showing up in your device’s App Store app.

I still use my old 2G to shoot. There are a few apps which won’t run on the newer operating systems and I can still shoot with Polarize! Although the camera of the 2G is pretty bad by today’s standards, I like shooting with it as sort of a “project” camera. It lacks the color and dynamic range of the newer iPhones. It’s the digital equivalent of a Holga. It truly is shooting life in lo-fi.

I’m filing this one under “Musings” and not News. I expected to see OS 3 support go away with a bigger update — Instagram 3, now with IMAX! Instead, it went away quietly in a very minor dot-hundredth update. Other apps have dropped support for old iPhones, but this is really one of the last nails….

If you don’t have Instagram by now, the App Store link is below. Instagram is still free but for the first time, it’s no longer old iPhone-friendly. Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 4.0 4.3 or later.

Life In LoFi keeps a database of which apps support old operating systems. If you have an old iPhone, check out our iPhone Photo App Resolutions to see which photo apps will still run on your device. It’s also got the maximum resolutions of over 550 photo apps.

Instagram - Burbn, Inc.

=M=

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"Instagram updated. No longer old iPhone-friendly." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Happy Birthday, Instagram http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/07/16/happy-birthday-instagram/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/07/16/happy-birthday-instagram/#comments Tue, 17 Jul 2012 03:45:36 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=17086 Two years ago today, Instagram's first photo was posted. For better or for worse, Instagram has had a huge impact on iPhoneography and more importantly, the way and the frequency that we (collectively) shoot and share photos.

"Happy Birthday, Instagram." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Instagram’s first photo

 

Two years ago today, Instagram’s first photo was posted. At the the time, it was still in beta and was called “Codename.” The image was uploaded by Instagram Founder Kevin Systrom. Three months later in October of 2010, Instagram was released to the public.

For better or for worse, Instagram has had a huge impact on iPhoneography and more importantly, the way and the frequency that we (collectively) shoot and share photos.

Read on for my thoughts about Instagram. >>>

I don’t really think Instagram is a pure “iPhoneography” app. It’s actually a lot more and I think the mobile photography aspect is just a component of it. I have always felt (and said repeatedly here on Life In LoFi) that Instagram is first and foremost a social network with photography. It was the right app at the right time and since its introduction, it, of course, has caught on like wildfire. No other photo app — the extremely popular Hipstamatic included — has created such a vibrant third-party marketplace like Instagram has.

Watching the Instagram feeds and watching Instagrammers interact with each other reaffirms my belief that Instagram is much more than sharing mobile photography. It’s very much about connecting. Instagram has definitely affected the social aspect of mobile photography for the better. It’s another tool to connect with other mobile photographers and just everyday users whose photography and/or snapshots you like.

While I see a lot of Instagram-filtered images come through our weekly showcase, generally the photo started off as a good image to begin with and most of the time the Instagram filters don’t get in the way of the photograph.

There is a lot of photography on Instagram that I’m not personally fond of (and I’m not talking about everyday snapshots). However, those photographers thought enough of their work when they finished shooting and processing that they wanted to share it. Good and bad, it’s all there in our feeds for us to see and explore. Art is subjective and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. On the other hand, there are also mobile photographers who are finishing some really great photographs using just Instagram filters.

Unlike some, I don’t think Instagram has undermined the quality and reputation of mobile photography. Instagram is its own community. There’s a lot of crossover with “mobile photographers” but I don’t think that galleries and exhibitions are thumbing their noses at mobile photography on the whole simply because people share Hefe-filtered photos of their lunch to their Instagram feed (I’m guilty of that one, by the way).

I also think for users who have just discovered mobile photography, Instagram can be a gateway app. They like what they see when they apply the app’s filters. They want more. They explore the App Store to find other great photo effects apps.

Instagram will always have millions of users who are happy with the app’s two dozen filters or so. You know what? They’re having fun. I think that’s great.

Two years ago, Instagram was the right app at the right time. While no one on the outside knows for sure what the path is for the company — Instagram is notorious for alluding to its growth plans in vague terms — one thing is for certain, millions of people every day now share moments of their lives through its smartphone-centric portals. Connections have been made, cottage industries built and we peer into each other’s lives through Sutro-colored lenses.

=M=
Instagram/@MartyNearDFW

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"Happy Birthday, Instagram." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Andrew Caldwell: Around the World in 80 Days (or 12 Instagram Filters) http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/07/12/andrew-caldwell-around-the-world-in-80-days/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/07/12/andrew-caldwell-around-the-world-in-80-days/#comments Thu, 12 Jul 2012 15:16:51 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=16927 This was no ordinary 365 project. Andrew Caldwell's travels have taken him all around the world. He's decided to document and share them on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and on his own website. For those of us who are stuck at home and even those of us who tackle more modest 365s, Andrew's is a huge project and his iPhone photography from the corners of the globe is awesome.

"Andrew Caldwell: Around the World in 80 Days (or 12 Instagram Filters)." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Day 48 – 17th February

An iPhone photo a day, shot, edited & published from around the world

By Andrew Caldwell

Back in June, I got an email from iPhoneographer Andrew Caldwell that started off something like this:

“My name’s Andrew and this year I’ve been traveling the world, shooting/editing/publishing an iPhone photo project.”

Once I saw his images, I realized that this was no ordinary 365 project. Andrew’s travels have taken him all around the world. He’s decided to document and share them on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and on his own website. For those of us who are stuck at home and even those of us who tackle more modest 365s, Andrew’s is a huge project and his iPhone photography from the corners of the globe is awesome.

The first half of this journey is complete. Click past the jump for highlights from Andrew’s travels, as well as Andrew Caldwell in his own words.  =M=  >>>

Day 65 – 5th March

 

2012 was to be the year of travel. India was at the top of the list, but the options on how to get there was the fun part. Coming from Perth, Western Australia is really a hop, skip and a jump via South East Asia to Calcutta or across to New Delhi. There’s no fun in that.

Having pined over so many Instagram photos of the Brooklyn Bridge, I thought it’d be more of an adventure to fly west and meet some friends in the U.S. The flight path from the States to New Delhi via London flew directly over Turkey, which had always interested me, so Turkey was added to the list.

Prior to hatching this ridiculous plan, a friend on Twitter who’d introduced me to the iPhone’s Photosynth app (funnily enough a Microsoft app that works superbly. Go figure…) suggested I join him and a few others in a 365 photo project. The premise? A photo a day shot on your iPhone, posted via Instagram. easy enough. I thought this would be a cool way to document the year of travel.

I didn’t appreciate it until I was in the thick of it, but landing in a foreign country my new priorities became visa, cash, and local SIM card. I could take photos, edit them on the fly, and post them to Flickr, Twitter and Facebook via instagram as I saw the world… live.

This really kicked things up a gear when you’re walking around Soho, NYC, snapping a few photos while other Instagram users are doing the same, and then meeting up for a coffee with them afterwards. Ahhh, technology.

I like to keep things simple, keep the edits simple and try my best to enhance the photos. The age-old framing, rule of thirds, shooting something interesting or obscure, all still form the basis of the photos. Lluckily for me each photo can be of a different part of the world, which helps a lot.

The highlights of the trip so far (besides snapping on an olloclip and feeling like a kid at Christmas) would have to be being able to photograph the Golden Gate Bridge with the iPhone while singing the theme song to Full House. Or choosing Instagram’s Lo-fi filter for the month of March because I knew at least one of the shots would have to be of New York’s taxis. Another — a fantastic sunset on day 100 behind the Blue Mosque in Istanbul.

Day 67 – 7th March

Day 82 – 22nd March

Day 39 – 8th February

The biggest challenges faced but most fun things to photograph were during a four-day visit to the centre of Turkey, Goreme (Kapadokya). The wind gods smiled on us and had a rest for the day, allowing the hot air balloon tours to take flight. Being able to photograph, edit, post & tweet photos of the hot air balloon ride as it happened and have people on social media commenting at the time demonstrated the speed and potential of social media.

Whilst trekking in the Himalayas in Nepal, the biggest challenge was finding cell phone reception. It was nice to find a corner of the world where I could disconnect, to the detriment of being able to post a photo per day! The sunrises over the mountains on the Himalaya trek looked like they were designed for iPhone. Using ProHDR and Camera+ the photos really shine out as some of the best of the year.

Traveling and using the iPhone as my primary camera has been eye-opening. Locals going about their business in their native towns don’t see an iPhone as intrusive as a big DSLR lens being pointed at them. You have the benefit of being able to edit the shots and show them to other people who haven’t been lucky enough to experience other parts of their own country.

I couldn’t have imagined being able to carry a camera, processing and editing studio and communication centre in my pocket.

..

Andrew Caldwell is from Perth, Western Australia. iPhone photography enthusiast, Civil Engineer & keen traveller. Currently in Northern Sumatra, Indonesia. The remainder of the 365 photo project will see him return home for a short while before heading to Europe.

Facebook/a365photoproject
Website: a365photoproject.com
Twitter/@andrew__C

..

Andrew Caldwell

Day 138 – 17th May

Day 29 – 29th January

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"Andrew Caldwell: Around the World in 80 Days (or 12 Instagram Filters)." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/06/22/follow-friday-facebook-twitter-google-030912/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/06/22/follow-friday-facebook-twitter-google-030912/#comments Fri, 22 Jun 2012 17:06:45 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=15735 In the spirit of #FF Follow Friday on Twitter, I’d like to invite you to also follow Life In LoFi on our other social media channels. Here's where and why....

"It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and Google+." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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In the spirit of #FF Follow Friday on Twitter, I’d like to invite you to also follow Life In LoFi on our other social media channels. Here’s where and why….

Facebook

Like Life In LoFi’s Facebook page. Facebook is where we post a lot more app sales, freebies and giveaways than you’ll find on the blog itself. These are often discounts that happen pretty fast. If you’re concerned about Wall clutter, we don’t post nearly as often as Mashable does….

Twitter

Follow @LifeInLoFiBlog on Twitter. Find out as soon as new blog posts hit. Have conversations with me and other iPhoneographers 140 characters at a time.

Google+

Follow us on Google+ for notifications when new blog posts go live. Interact with other iPhoneographers who respond and share on Google+. Like Facebook, we also post news of app sales and discounts that don’t always appear on the blog.

Life In LoFi on Flipboard

Flipboard

Life In LoFi is featured content on Flipboard. If you aren’t familiar with the app, Flipboard collects all the things you like to read on the web and and creates a personalized magazine experience for iPhone, iPad and other devices. It’s a free download.

To add Life In LoFi to your Flipboard, from the homescreen click the search button at the top. Scroll down to Photos & Design and select the “+” to add the “iPhoneography (The art of the iPhone)” section. Life In LoFi also shares this tab with Instagram and tap tap tap’s blogs.

Flickr

Life In LoFi is on Flickr as well. Each week, over a thousand images are submitted to the group. Share yours and they may be selected for our weekly Faved On Flickr showcase.

However you get your LoFi fix, I thank you for reading Life In LoFi.

=M=

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"It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and Google+." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Apple exploring swappable iPhone camera lenses? http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/06/16/apple-exploring-swappable-iphone-camera-lenses/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/06/16/apple-exploring-swappable-iphone-camera-lenses/#comments Sat, 16 Jun 2012 22:38:53 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=16211 As the quality of compact cameras improve,a new patent by Apple states that users are desire more of the features found in high-end DSLRs,

"Apple exploring swappable iPhone camera lenses?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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This week, AppleInsider published details of an new Apple patent just published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The application, entitled “Back Panel for a Portable Electronic Device with Different Camera Lens Options,” includes exploded-view illustrations of an iPhone-like device. You can read a summary of the patent here. The page also contains a link to the entire application.

It’s an interesting concept. Click past the jump for more on the patent and to find out what I think about it.

The patent filing talks about the digital image capturing devices — the camera — in compact electronic devices such as the iPhone. As they are now, the camera is part of a single sub-assembly so that “all components requiring high precision optical alignment are pre-assembled,” permitting economies of scale in the manufacturing process.

As the quality of these compact cameras improve, the filing states that users are desiring more of the features found in high-end DSLRs, such as lens and filter mounts for replaceable lenses and optics.

“It would be desireable to provide a structure for a compact device that allows the end user to reconfigure the optical arrangement of the device….”

In theory, I think this is a great idea and one which some third-party iPhone case makers are currently addressing. However, the patent doesn’t describe the addition of a mini-C-mount to the iPhone. It’s more of a scorched earth approach and describes replacing the entire back panel of the device. That to me is where this concept falls apart and why I think it will never reach production in its current state.

As described in the patent, this method allows the user to open up the iPhone, exposing the camera unit as well as the electronic guts of the iPhone. This contradicts what Apple has been doing across its product line for the past couple of years — that is restricting user access to the inside of the device. All new Apple product designs have no user serviceable or replaceable parts. Cases now have proprietary screws. Good luck finding a Torx wrench or screwdriver which will get you into your iPhone, iPad or MacBook Air. Apple is moving towards a very closed, sandbox architecture in both its hardware and software. I can’t see why after working so hard to close off user access Apple would suddenly change that on the iPhone for the sake of a relatively small number of power users.

I also think that changing the entire back panel is a clunky, much less elegant solution than simply incorporating some sort of lens mount or turret system on a future iPhone case. One of the things Apple is known for is its elegant solutions.

Realistically, this is probably an instance of Apple patenting an idea to protect it and similar intellectual property in the future. There are a ton of patents out there that never go anywhere.

As the quality of the camera sensor increases, there is a need for the rest of the camera to improve as well. Optics is one area that can and should be improved as the iPhone evolves.

For improved optics now, there are several great third-party options available today, including the very popular Olloclip 3-in-1 Lens for iPhone, the newest version of the Diff case with C-mount lens adapters, and the high-end iPro Lens System from Schneider Optics.

I’m glad that Apple is looking forward regarding the development of the iPhone’s camera. I don’t think that this patent, though, is something to get excited about just yet, if ever.

What are your thoughts on this new patent from Apple? Are you excited about swappable back panels or think this is a clunky solution for better optics? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

=M=

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"Apple exploring swappable iPhone camera lenses?." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Last 2 Days to Vote for Life In LoFi in the Shorty Awards http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/02/15/last-2-days-to-vote-for-life-in-lofi-in-the-shorty-awards/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/02/15/last-2-days-to-vote-for-life-in-lofi-in-the-shorty-awards/#comments Wed, 15 Feb 2012 17:11:53 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=15403 Life In LoFi has been nominated for a Shorty Award in the Best Blogger in Social Media category. These are the last days to vote. If you'd like to vote for Life In LoFi, visit this page to tweet your vote.

"Last 2 Days to Vote for Life In LoFi in the Shorty Awards." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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The Shorty Awards are given to social media users for excellence over the past year. Each award recognizes a content creator’s entire body of work, not just an individual tweet or post. Life In LoFi has been nominated for a Shorty Award in the Best Blogger in Social Media category. These are the last two days for the public to vote for their nominations.

The nomination period goes through Friday, February 17, 2012 at 11:59 PM EST. Nominations are made by tweeting or through ShortyAwards.com. If you’d like to vote for Life In LoFi, visit this page to tweet your vote.

I truly appreciate the votes that have already been cast and the flattering comments you all have made. I don’t have the words to express how honored and thankful I am. Except to say thank you very much.

=M=

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"Last 2 Days to Vote for Life In LoFi in the Shorty Awards." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and G+ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/02/10/its-follow-friday-follow-life-in-lofi-on-facebook-twitter-and-g/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/02/10/its-follow-friday-follow-life-in-lofi-on-facebook-twitter-and-g/#comments Fri, 10 Feb 2012 10:57:11 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=15240 In the spirit of #FF Follow Friday on Twitter, I’d like to invite you to also follow Life In LoFi on our other social media channels. Here’s where and why….
Facebook
Like Life In LoFi’s Facebook page. ...

"It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and G+." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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In the spirit of #FF Follow Friday on Twitter, I’d like to invite you to also follow Life In LoFi on our other social media channels. Here’s where and why….

Facebook

Like Life In LoFi’s Facebook page. We post a lot more app sales, freebies and giveaways on Facebook than we do on the blog. These are often sales and freebies that happen pretty fast. If you’re concerned about Wall clutter, we don’t post nearly as often as Mashable does….

Twitter

Follow @LifeInLoFiBlog on Twitter. Find out as soon as new blog posts hit. Have conversations with me and other iPhoneographers 140 characters at a time. I also share cool links there  that I find around the web.

Google+

Follow us on Google+ for notifications when new blog posts go live. Interact with other iPhoneographers who respond and share on Google+. Like Facebook, we also post news of app sales and discounts that don’t always appear on the blog.

Life In LoFi on Flipboard

Flipboard

Life In LoFi is featured content on Flipboard. If you aren’t familiar with the app, Flipboard collects all the things you like to read on the web and and creates a personalized magazine experience for iPhone, iPad and other devices. It’s a free download.

To add Life In LoFi to your Flipboard, from the homescreen click the search button at the top. Scroll down to Photos & Design and select the “+” to add the “iPhoneography (The art of the iPhone)” section. Life In LoFi also shares this tab with Instagram and tap tap tap’s blogs.

Flickr

Life In LoFi is on Flickr as well. Each week, over a thousand images are submitted to the group. Share yours and they may be selected for our weekly Faved On Flickr showcase.

However you get your LoFi fix, I thank you for reading Life In LoFi.

=M=

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"It’s Follow Friday – Follow Life In LoFi on Facebook, Twitter and G+." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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iBooks Author and iPhoneography: What You Need to Know About the EULA http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/01/23/ibooks-author-and-iphoneography-what-you-need-to-know/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/01/23/ibooks-author-and-iphoneography-what-you-need-to-know/#comments Mon, 23 Jan 2012 11:03:17 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=14919 iBooks Author is either the savior of publishing or the worst thing that's ever happened to publishing. I think it's pretty awesome, but there are a few things iPhoneographers need to know before you use it to self-publish.

"iBooks Author and iPhoneography: What You Need to Know About the EULA." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Apple recently announced an improved iBooks targeted at broadening the reach of eBooks. As an incentive to fill out the iBookstore, Apple also released the great eBook publishing app iBooks Author for Mac OS free of charge. It’s a pretty cool app that you can use to easily create multimedia eBooks.

Thinking of using the iBookstore to self-publish? Many iPhoneographers already self-publish printed photobooks of their works through Blurb and MagCloud. Some are also publishing eBook versions for electronic distribution.

iBooks Author is either the savior of publishing or the the Devil himself. It depends on whose blog post you read. In my opinion, it’s pretty awesome, but there are a few things iPhoneographers need to know before you use it to self-publish through Apple and any other channels. >>>

Released mainly to create interactive textbooks for iPad, iBooks Author can also be used to create great looking iPhoneography showcases in eBook form. One of the cool things about the app is that it not only outputs eBooks with dynamic content, but can also output a static PDF which can be used for a variety of purposes.

The uproar throughout the blogosphere that you may have heard about concerns this section from the iBook Author’s Terms and Conditions… you know, the long bit of legalese that you skip past without reading before pressing Agree.

“IMPORTANT NOTE: If you charge a fee for any book or other work you generate using this software (a “Work”), you may only sell or distribute such Work through Apple (e.g., through the iBookstore) and such distribution will be subject to a separate agreement with Apple.”

More specifically from the EULA:

B. Distribution of your Work. As a condition of this License and provided you are in compliance with its terms, your Work may be distributed as follows:

(i) if your Work is provided for free (at no charge), you may distribute the Work by any available means;

(ii) if your Work is provided for a fee (including as part of any subscription-based product or service), you may only distribute the Work through Apple and such distribution is subject to the following limitations and conditions: (a) you will be required to enter into a separate written agreement with Apple (or an Apple affiliate or subsidiary) before any commercial distribution of your Work may take place; and (b) Apple may determine for any reason and in its sole discretion not to select your Work for distribution.

Basically, what this means is that under this End User License Agreement, if you use iBooks Author to create a book, you may give the book away for free everywhere, forever. You can never charge for its distribution or download — ebook or print. Apple doesn’t “own” you or the work, as some in the blogosphere have cried.

If you want to charge for your book or “Work,” you can only use Apple’s iBookstore channel to sell or distribute the work if you used iBooks Author to create it. To also sell your eBook on Amazon.com or use a PDF to sell on Blurb or MagCloud, you’ll need a separate agreement with Apple to distribute, according to the Terms and Conditions.

One thing that’s very important to note here. The key phrase is “If you charge a fee for any book or other work you generate using this software….” Apple doesn’t own the contents your work — your art, your photographs, your text, your layout. They only own the electronic files, the epub or PDF that it’s wrapped in. So, if you want to sell your book on Amazon, Blurb, or MagCloud as wel, you’ll need to recreate your book using other software. Don’t want to be beholden to Apple for anything? You could also create the book in another app to distribute through all channels, including the iBookstore.

The EULA may be a pain, but I don’t think it’s evil. It’s simply limited in its generosity with Apple looking after its own self-interests. Apple is merely trying to get authors to publish to iBooks and they are offering a pretty great free software front end as motivation to encourage them.

It could be a great opportunity for iPhoneographers to self-publish and have their works seen in the iBookstore. The Terms and Conditions are unusual and a little restrictive, but it’s not “greedy” or “evil” in that by using it Apple owns your work.

iBooks Author is Mac OS only. Sorry Windows folks. It also requires Mac OS X 10.7.2 or later. Sorry Mac OS X 10.6 folks.

iBooks Author - Apple

=M=

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iBooks Author photo courtesy of Apple. Disclaimer: I’m not an attorney, but if you read the EULA, the language is pretty clear.

"iBooks Author and iPhoneography: What You Need to Know About the EULA." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Cool Link: Engadget – Polaroid SC1630 Android HD smart camera hands-on http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/01/16/cool-link-engadget-polaroid-sc1630-android-hd-smart-camera-hands-on/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2012/01/16/cool-link-engadget-polaroid-sc1630-android-hd-smart-camera-hands-on/#comments Mon, 16 Jan 2012 10:42:35 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=14673 One of the two new gizmos this year that I find really intriguing is Polaroid's new venture into instant digital photography, the SC1630. It's basically a Polaroid-branded digital camera with an Android-based smartphone.

"Cool Link: Engadget – Polaroid SC1630 Android HD smart camera hands-on." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make CES, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this year. Reading the recaps, though, there are two new gizmos this year that I find really intriguing. One of them is Polaroid’s new venture into instant digital photography, the SC1630. It’s basically a Polaroid-branded digital camera with an Android-based smartphone. Engadget.com had one of the best recaps of the new device that I’d read. The link and my thoughts on the SC1630 after the jump. >>>

According to an Engadget story, it’s an update and rebrand of last year’s 14 megapixel Aigo A8 camera phone. As far as camera phones go, the specs say the new Polaroid is a sexy device. For stills, the camera supports a huge 16 megapixel resolution — that’s twice the resolution of the iPhone 4S. It has a 3X optical zoom in addition to any digital zoom software or apps may have. In test photographs I’ve seen, the color was rich and natural. According to Engadget, the camera has proprietary Polaroid compression technology to reduce file size and conserve bandwidth. It’s got a lot of sweet specs. Check out the entire post on Engadget (link at the end of this post).

The device uses the Android operating system, which means users will be able to download photo apps from the Android Market. Although the Android Market doesn’t have nearly the number of photo apps that are available in the iPhone’s App Store, there are still plenty of crossover photo apps such as Magic Hour, TouchRetouch, Retro Camera Plus, Camera360, BeFunky Photo Editor, and Adobe Photoshop Touch. We’ve reviewed the iPhone versions of many of these apps.

I have a soft spot for Polaroid. One of my first cameras as a kid was the Polaroid Swinger. It took muddy black & white photos and because of the chemistry, each print smelled really bad. But the joys of instant photography were as gratifying to me back then as the joys of iPhoneography and apping is now.

Over the years as film sales declined and the company declared bankruptcy, “Polaroid” became little more than an asset — intellectual property to be licensed out without regard for quality in many cases. Many — not all — of the iPhone apps that Polaroid licensed its name or trademarks to were pretty bad and “Official Poloroid Photo App” became kind of a joke.

To me, Polaroid is synonymous with “Instant Photography.” Edwin Land invented it. I want to see Polaroid succeed as a hardware company. Not only am I excited to see that someone in the Polaroid holding company recognizes the connection between mobile photography and the instant photography that Polaroid pioneered so many year ago, but is also being fairly proactive in getting into the game with a device that on paper is a quality instant mobile phone camera. I’m excited to see how this cameraphone performs in the wild.

It’s scheduled to street this April for $299. No carriers have been announced. I won’t be getting one of these — I love my past, current, and future iPhones way too much. But when they street, I’ll definitely be at the AT&T or Verizon store sending an afternoon getting to know the SC1630.

Here’s the link to the post on Engadget. UPDATE 01.16.12: The post has more hands-on photos and specs. There’s also a link to an earlier post of the Aigo A8 with more photos, video, and sample images.

=M=

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Source: “Polaroid SC1630 Android HD smart camera hands-on, is it a cameraphone or a phonecamera?” by Micheal Gorman, engadget.com.

"Cool Link: Engadget – Polaroid SC1630 Android HD smart camera hands-on." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Happy 2012 from Marty and Life In LoFi http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/31/happy-2012-from-marty-and-life-in-lofi/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/31/happy-2012-from-marty-and-life-in-lofi/#comments Sun, 01 Jan 2012 00:32:09 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=14337 Here’s wishing you and yours a very happy and prosperous 2012!
Thank you for letting me share with you my thoughts, opinions and musings throughout the year. As the art form grows in reach and acceptance, ...

"Happy 2012 from Marty and Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Here’s wishing you and yours a very happy and prosperous 2012!

Thank you for letting me share with you my thoughts, opinions and musings throughout the year. As the art form grows in reach and acceptance, 2012 promises to be an even more interesting year.

For the coming year and beyond, I wish you success in your endeavors and the light you want for your photography.

Kinky Freidman gave me this toast. “May the best of the past be the worst of the future.”

Happy New Year!

=M=

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"Happy 2012 from Marty and Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Happy Holidays from Marty and Life In LoFi http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/24/happy-holidays-from-marty-and-life-in-lofi-2/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/24/happy-holidays-from-marty-and-life-in-lofi-2/#comments Sun, 25 Dec 2011 03:53:16 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=14138 Here’s wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukkah, or whatever holiday you are celebrating at this time of year. I hope these are good times for you spent with family and ...

"Happy Holidays from Marty and Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Here’s wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukkah, or whatever holiday you are celebrating at this time of year. I hope these are good times for you spent with family and friends. I hope the joy and spirit of the holidays stays with you all year long.

Happy Holidays!

=M=

—-

"Happy Holidays from Marty and Life In LoFi." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Life In LoFi Status Update, 12.15.11 http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/15/life-in-lofi-status-update-12-15-11/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/12/15/life-in-lofi-status-update-12-15-11/#comments Thu, 15 Dec 2011 17:23:24 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=13998 We've been doing some under the hood changes recently to the blog. Some of them you can see as tweaks to the social sharing buttons and minor improvements to the mobile version of the blog. Others are under the hood.

"Life In LoFi Status Update, 12.15.11." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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We’ve been doing some under the hood changes recently to the blog. Some of them you can see as tweaks to the social sharing buttons and minor improvements to the mobile version of the blog. Others are under the hood.

Any under-the-hood changes should not be noticeable to you (except for maybe a very, very small boost in page load speeds). If you are having any problems reading pages, commenting, or entering info in forms, please email me at lifeinlofiblog [at] gmail [dot] com.

We’ll be making a few more tweaks in the coming weeks — minor ones, but it should be blogging as usual and you shouldn’t really notice any difference. If there are any known issues during this time, I’ll post them in the comments to this post. Please let me know if you’re experiencing any problems with the blog.

As always, thank you for stopping in.

=M=

"Life In LoFi Status Update, 12.15.11." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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Life In LoFi Status Update 11.23.11 http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/11/23/life-in-lofi-status-update-11-23-11/ http://lifeinlofi.com/2011/11/23/life-in-lofi-status-update-11-23-11/#comments Wed, 23 Nov 2011 17:25:52 +0000 http://lifeinlofi.com/?p=13478 My graphic design studio is usually steady with work. Recently, I've had over twice as many large projects as I normally would. In the past few days, I've put the last two, including the largest, to bed. You'll now hear and see a lot more from me on the blog and online.

"Life In LoFi Status Update 11.23.11." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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My graphic design studio is usually steady with work, which enables me to strike a balance of sorts between work, blog, and life outside both. Recently, I’ve had over twice as many large projects as I normally would. For publications alone, I’ve designed over 300 pages and dozens of ads in the last five weeks — a pretty big feat especially considering that we’re essentially a one-man shop right now and that these were for a half-dozen extremely varied projects.

In the past few days, I’ve put the last two, including the largest, to bed. You’ll now hear and see a lot more from me on the blog and online. In the coming days, I’ll be playing catch up on some of the recent apps and updates that I’ve missed, as well as other iPhoneography-related news.

Thanks for sticking around. It’s good to be back.

=M=

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"Life In LoFi Status Update 11.23.11." originally appeared on Life in LoFi: iPhoneography. © 2013 LifeInLoFi.com. All rights reserved.

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