Tag Archives: Camera+

The Easy Trick to Getting Crisp, Eye-Catching Photos

Well hi there!   Hope your week’s going great!

I have a confession to make:   as the family pest historian I shoot a gazillion photos.  I’ve always wanted to take good photographs, but if anyone mentions the words aperture or shutter speed or ISO my mind goes blank.  Not sure why . . . perhaps because the basic rules seem counter-intuitive?  You know:  if a subject is moving fast you need a fast shutter speed, but to let in light you need a wide aperture, and that involves a slower shutter speed, and large apertures (where lots of light gets through) are given f/stop smaller numbers and smaller apertures (where less light gets through) have larger f-stop numbers. So f/2.8 is in fact a much larger aperture than f/22. . . blah blah blah blah . . .

Huh?  If you’re anything like me (translation:  amateur photographer),  you’re trying to wrap your head around these concepts, because you want crisp, clear, stunning photos and you’ve been told these terms are PARAMOUNT to getting a great shot.  Or (and this would be me)  you’re shaking your head back and forth to wake yourself up.

But I am here to tell you, dear readers:  there IS a trick to getting gorgeous, crisp photos that does NOT involve those nasty A and S words!!

Now as the cliché goes, a picture tells a thousand words.  So before I reveal my easy trick, here are Before and After shots of a bee:

Bee Shot, before the Easy Photo Trick

Bee shot, AFTER the Easy Photo Trick

Big difference, right?  Yes, my After shot could be even better if I were to master the A and S words.  But I know my lazy clueless self and it ain’t gonna happen pals!

So you ready to know the Easy (not so) Secret Photo Trick?  Drum roll please!

 . . . It’s a camera app.  Yep, nearly every photo I post publicly gets the app treatment.   Here’s what you can do to get photos like the Bee After shot, above:

1)  Snap a photo with your smart phone  (I used the iPhone 4Gs, and it has an awesome camera, but most of the latest cell phones have good cameras)

2)  Open your camera application and insert your photo.  (I used Camera+ , which I downloaded for 99 cents from iTunes)

3)  Enhance your photo.

Camera+, like most of the photography applications out there, has a lot of filters and options, but I usually keep things simple:  I give the photo Clarity, Crop the photo, and then add Effects, which is usually a filter.  My favorite filter in Camera+ is HDR, located under “Special.”    That’s it!

It takes me less than a minute to enhance a photo.  If you want to, you can add a border and a caption– I usually select simple borders, but sometimes I’ll pick one of the “Styled” selections.  My favorites are Light Grit (used in the Bee After shot, above) and Dark Grit (same look as Light Grit, but in black).

Once finished, save the enhanced photo to your camera roll.  You’ll have the original and enhanced photos right there, on your phone so you can show all your friends!

Cheating?  Maybe.  But photo apps are fun and easy . . . and who doesn’t LOVE fun and easy!

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Filed under iPad, iPhone, Life, Photographs, Photography, Uncategorized

The colors and charms of Provence, France.

A stone path, a bike in front of a café, a town square and a rambling road.

Colorful, fresh produce stalls. (Daughter Jenna, top left.)

French Gray furniture, pots and signs.

Blue, gray, and green window shutters.

Purple flowers.

Last June we took the trip of a lifetime to France and Spain.   Snapped all these photos with the iPhone, except for the lavender shot in the last photo, bottom right. (Lifted that one from a postcard 😉 ) I used two apps to enhance and organize the pictures into collages:  Camera+ and Diptic.    Had so much fun putting these photos together . . . hope we can get to Provence again sometime!

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Filed under iPhone, Travel