Sunday, December 22, 2013

Land of the Midnight Surf

One of my favorite newcomer apps is Color Thief. Basically, you choose a photo and choose another of  your photos (or theirs or a website) and the app "steals" the color palette of that second photo and applies it to the first. Sometimes, it's weird, sometimes wonderful, and sometimes you just get to "see" differently.

I was in Honolulu recently and shot this photo on the beach. I loved that the patterned surfboard tells you exactly where you are. It was a gray, cloudy day just before a storm. I just used Snapseed app for some basic optimizing.

And it is fine, as is. Then I started to flip through the Color Thief using other pix I'd taken the same day.This one was a little brighter from a sunnier photo. I like it as well.

A more monochromatic shot yielded this faded, vintage look. Notice we lost some detail in the clouds, so if I really loved this I would probably go into Blender and paint in clouds from the original after desaturating it so as to match the tone. I wasn't enamored enough of this effect to do that, however.

I actually like this one a great deal. I don't mind the cloud detail being gone - the image is already pretty surreal and it just adds to the strange and moody feeling.

Then I let Color Thief use the heavy blue purple tones from an aquarium shot to almost make a day-to-night effect. I liked it but it needed something to really make it feel like night. Laminar app (formerly called Iris) has a vintage effect called Space - I added it and used a mask so it just showed in the sky and sea area. Voila. Land of The Midnight Surf which is my favorite of the series.

Warning: it is possible (read likely) to use up a lot of time playing with this app. It is just so darn much fun to discover all the ways color can completely change an image. I have to budget the amount of time I play with this or whole days can be lost. It's that addicting.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Ti-riffic iPhone Subjects

I love Ti  (or Ki as we call it in Hawaiian.) The colorful leaves of this plant never fail to seduce me into admiring them. Last week, I splurged on them - the gift that keeps on giving. Ki leaves symbolize protection from harm and many island homes (including ours)  have Ki plants surrounding them.

This is a straight abstract closeup with Snapseed for optimization and Touch Retouch to remove some debris spots.

 I love the purples in these leaves - no fancy apping except Snapseed to optimize.

These leaves were covered with dew in the morning. Snapseed and Camera+ apps.
Then I got a little more abstract and app-happy. I used Average Cam Pro - 8 exposures moving the camera slightly to get a painterly effect for the last 2 images. Since I love abstraction, these may be my favorites. (Of this shoot anyway.)

Friday, November 15, 2013

iPhone Paradise in Hawaii

Well, between family illnesses and travel for fun, the late summer and autumn clean got away from me. Still, I shot lots of photos and am just now able to start going through them all. I'm working backwards from now, so the first shots are from my time at the fabulous Creative Photography For The Soul taught by the incomparable Jack Davis. (Next year is almost full already, so if you are interested, I suggest you check out his website here.)

This experiential photo seminar takes place right on my home turf here in Moloka`i, Hawai`i. It's always a delightful challenge to photograph your own back yard in a new way. Thanks to my new iPhone 5S and ever changing apps, I feel up to it. Here's a few from the week.

These agave leaves were apped in Snapseed and Dynamic Light. Color is courtesy of Color Thief, one of my new favorite apps.

 I shot this palm frond and sunset at Kapuaiwa Palm Grove, one of my favorite haunts. I used the new HDR in Snapseed and it is amazing. The palm frond was black until it was applied. This new HDR effect is a game changer. Further optimized in Snapseed and texturized in Camera Awesome!

I love the way laua`e ferns sometimes seem to grow into an embrace. Straight shot apped with Snapseed and Dramatic Black and White.

Finally, this tropical bloom with glorious leaves was apped in Snapseed and Portrait Painter.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

An App A Day Keeps the Boredom Away

One of my favorite apps is called Foolproof Art Studio. As many of you know, I love painting on my photos. And Foolproof is an app that allows you control of the paintbrush. Unlike Painteresque or Artista Oil apps (both of which I like very much), Foolproof has you creating every brush stroke rather than having it done for you. So each rendition is one of a kind. Here are a few examples.

This boat floats just off the shore at the Kapuaiwa Palm Grove in Moloka`i, Hawai`i. It has been photographed by countless folks over the years (and in every kind of light by Dewitt and me.) This is a whole new look when painted in Foolproof.
I like abstract works of art and enjoyed "painting" this ocean scene. The color palette is striking - and all from the original photo.
Gal pal Theresa was photographing with me on the beach, so of course, I had to take a photo of her in her element. Then I painted her in Foolproof.

My favorite of our beach day is this minimalist scene of a celadon wave breaking on the golden sand under an azure sky. I liked the original photo and I LOVE the painted one. Foolproof Art Studio is my app of the day.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Petal Pushers

Well, the petal pushers came out after the last blog post, I'm delighted to say. I am feeling so inspired! Check out these latest flower portraits.

Katrina Pruett shares this lovely composition called Tiny Flowers. By her own admission, it's one of those "extreme app" results. She started with two photos from slightly different angles of the same tiny flowers. Blender (which made unexpected color changes). Photo Fx for one of the diffusing filters. Then Toon Camera to reverse a bit of the fuzziness. Lastly Pic Grunger for texture. This is one of iPhone Diva's favorites. I gotta try Katrina's recipe.


© Katrina Pruett

John Derby was awarded "Mark of Excellence" for this lovely Iris photo in the I Shot It photo competition sponsored by Leica. His wife grew the beautiful bloom named interestingly enough "Starship Enterprise". You can find more of John's work on his artist site: John Derby Photograpy
© John Derby

For this vibrant lotus shot, Katrina again used a number of apps. Here's how she did it "Snap seed. Touch retouch to remove debris in the water. Laminar pro (can't recall why I ran it through that). Then a new one to me - Jazz. That put the red streaks and red tint in the background which I kinda like."

© Katrina Pruett

I took a Fourth of July walk with gal pals Theresa and Karen. The flowers were out in full regalia. Pink Indian Paintbrush decorated this granite boulder as we tramped to Lake Winnemucca in the Mokulumne Wilderness high in the California Sierra Nevada.. Snapseed, Camera+, Camera Awesome.
Dewitt and I were returning from a trip when we pulled over abruptly for this field of sunny blossoms. I love sunflowers - they seem to have personalities, each and every one. This is a straight iPhone shot using Pro HDR. And I'm sure I will app it in the future as well.

While celebrating the Fourth by traversing a favorite trail in the HIgh Sierra, my girlfriends and I came across a wildflower meadow in full bloom. Snapseed, Tiffen Photo FX, Camera +.

This shot by Lauri Dinetz combines a dahlia blossom with her haiku. No apps, just added the text on her computer. I love words and pictures together! Thanks everyone for the contributions!

© Lauri Dinetz

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Summer is Blooming

Everything seems to be in bloom so my poor little iPhone has been getting quite a workout. I have hardly had time to process any I've taken - here are a few.
Three roses worked with Snapseed, Camera+, and Camera Awesome.
The olloclip macro was used for detail of this freesia. Camera+, Snapseed, Touch Retouch.
This wild rose on the shore of Lake Tahoe was shot with ProHDR and processed using Snapseed and Camera Awesome.
The Olloclip macro lens showing just a detail of a  flower whose name I've forgotten. Processed in Snapseed and Camera +.
This photo was created using what I jokingly refer to as the freezer app. One of my iphoneography pals, Sara Howell, has frozen blossoms and then photographed them. Taking a page from her playbook, (thanks Sara), I froze these petals in a clear pyrex dish, then photographed them. Snapseed and Photoshop Touch were the "in iPad" apps. You can bet I'll be doing a lot more of these.
OK everyone, I'm looking forward to seeing some of your flower photos! Enjoy the summertime blooms.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Haunting Beauty on Kalaupapa Peninsula, Moloka`i

One of the most beautiful, heart wrenching places on Earth is Kalaupapa peninsula, Moloka`i, Hawai`i where people with Hansen's disease (leprosy) were exiled, until a cure was finally discovered. We were blessed to be hosted by dear friends for a couple of days to immerse ourselves. Here are a few iPhone memories.

Beach Leaves       Apps: Snapseed, Camera +, Camera Awesome

The visitor area where patients and family members were separated, unable to touch.
Apps:   Snapseed, Camera +, Camera Awesome

Early morning on the peninsula.   Apps: Autostitch, ProHDR, Photoforge

Cottage and Graves    Apps: Snapseed, Camera +, Pixlromatic

Friday, May 3, 2013

Abstract Expressionism iPhone Style

One of my favorite photographers has begun using her iphone in a most creative way. I love the Abstract Expressionist school of painting and Katrina Pruett's latest work reminds me of that.

For apps, here's what she used. Snapseed, Touch Retouch to eliminate scratches, ProHDR and Photogene for framing.  On photo #3, she used Glaze for texture.   Enjoy!

With this art experiment, she went all out. She used a collage app, among her usual favorites. Can you guess which one? Which collage app is your favorite?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Big Fun on the Big Island of Hawaii

Dewitt and I just had an amazing day with fun folks from Penn Mutual at the Fairmont Orchid Mauna Lani on the Kohala Coast of Hawaii Island. We explored photography, mostly with the iphone all around the grounds of this lovely resort. Yes, more of us fell down the rabbit hole of iphoneography - so much creative art work happened in such a short period of time that I promised to reprise the apps we used (and mention a few that we didn't so here they are!)

Snapseed                This is what I call the baby photoshop - the best photo optimizer by far. It also has some intriguing special effects like grunge, drama, and frames. It's robust so to get the most out of it, tap the question mark in the upper right to get help and links to instructional videos online. I always say, if you can only have one app, this is the one! And it's free!!!! The above photo of palm tree and gazebo roof was optimized in Snapseed and then zapped with the Drama filter in this same app.

FXPhoto Studio        Myriad special FX including frames. This app is easy, intuitive, and fun. There are so many effects that you could play forever with your existing photos and never finish. This great app is FREE today!

Pro HDR                    HDR stands for HIgh Dynamic Range and this app is a necessity for any iphoneographer. Anytime you have bright highlights and dark shadows (eg anytime you are shooting outdoors on a sunny day) you can get a photo that exposes for both areas, giving you a perfect photo that looks like what you see.  Set it on auto, hold it still while it analyzes and shoots 2 photos and then it will combine them into one. Save the result to your camera roll. Then app it with some other apps or just sit back and wait for compliments. The gazebo at sunrise below would have been a silhouette against the rising sun without ProHDR.

TouchRetouch           Want to get rid of power lines, annoying poles or trash in your photo? This is the go to app for content aware healing and removal of unwanted objects. Open your photo, use the little paint brush icon to select the part you want removed, and hit the go button (shaped like a little right arrow). Then just like magic, it's all fixed.

Autopainter              Cool painting app that is absolutely intuitive. Just use a photo from your camera roll, pick from a number of styles, and voila - amazing photo art. Works so well with plants and architecture. Two variations below with the laua`e fern and the palm tree (lithograph style).

Portrait Painter            This app is not just for portraits - in fact I never use it for people pix. It is fabulous for landscape and plants, birds. Like autopainter, it's an easy, one step app. Still you can also fine tune and adjust the effects. Great artistic app.

Blender                    Great app for combining images - very intuitive interface. Just import one and then another photo from your camera roll and it will put them together. It's like a double exposure or collage effect. After you choose two photos, you can also choose from a number of blend modes - go up to the two overlapping squares at the  top and it will bring them up. Try combining unlike images for a surreal effect. Terrific creative fun. The photo below was created with blender combining two shots of palm leaves and blend mode exclusion.

Other apps you might want to experiment with:

Simply BW                Absolute best B and W app - like a teeny Ansel Adams living in your phone.

Pic Grunger              Vintage and grunge effects - great if you are into that sort of thing - we are!

Autostitch                Panoramic - best. Can shoot panos from within the app or shoot with camera and combine later. It can handle lots of shots and big files.

Perfectly Clear        Best 1 stop shop to fix pix with no muss, no fuss, superior noise removal

This will keep a photographer busy for years. And likely whet your app-etite for more.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

An iPhoneographer in Steinbeck Country: Monterey

The Monterey peninsula is a great place for iphoneographers. In January, Dewitt and I spent a couple of days wandering and shooting (and eating fresh fish!).

This first photo is of Monterey wharf. Apps used: ProHDR, Camera+, Aquarelle combined with Snap and Sketch version in IRIS for a painting with edge definition. Love the colors.

Along the 17 mile drive after sunset, we photographed the beach and kelp. Apps: Bracket Mode, ProHDR, HDR FX, Snapseed.

Rappa's at the end of Monterey wharf serves fresh fish with a breathtaking harbor view. Apps: Aquarelle, Pro HDR, Camera+, IRIS to combine painted image with original.

Sailboats and sailing gull in the marina at Monterey wharf.  Apps: ProHDR, Camera+, AHDR, Snapseed.