Poll: Are You a Phone Photographer?

4 years ago

I suck at photography -- always have.

That is, I like other people's photography, and I'm even fine at editing other people's photos, but I never had any confidence in my own shots. I've always hated being handed a camera by tourists to take a quick snapshot of them in front of any number of San Francisco landmarks. So very many landmarks, and so very many tourists -- meaning so very, very many different cameras, with so very many buttons I didn't know how to push.

Then everybody got a smartphone and that got easier.

Then I joined Instagram and people started liking my iPhone photos.

Then I attended the photography tracks at BlogHer Food this year -- and my perspective changed forever.

I learned some great basic tips for framing a photo, telling a story, and deciphering the holy mysteries of light. I saw some totally brilliant photographs taken with an iphone. I was inspired by the stories of great photographers, some of whom used to be as clueless as I am.

My biggest takeaway: Don't just shoot photos -- edit them! I immediately downloaded a bunch of photo apps right there in Austin, and I can't stop playing with them.

Here's a collage of lots of Austin shots I put together with Diptic. It took me about a minute and was totally fun.

Here's another Austin shot, with captions added using Title FX. So very Texas, no?

Here's a delicious bloody mary I edited with PhotoToaster. I was able to crop it, sharpen the focus, and mess around just a little bit with the color until it looked extra tasty. The app has a ton of preset filters too, but I really liked finding my own look.

Playing with all these apps really boosted my self-esteem as a photographer by making me feel more in control over the process -- and they're also just fun. I know it's just a baby step, but I'm totally excited to keep going. Next step: Maybe even picking up a real DSLR camera. I'm so excited to go to Viewfinder Day at BlogHer '13 and learn more!

What phone photography apps do you use?

Now, how many of your photos do you take on your phone? Are you 100% iphoneographer, or do you still mostly use a camera? Use the Swipp below to tell us about you. Share your photo habits by clicking on the Swipp smiley face and moving the slider to give your score, then pressing the Swipp It button to enter your rating. A score of +5 would mean you ONLY use your phone for photos, while a score of -5 would mean you NEVER use your phone for photos.

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