Point me at the sky (b)
You don't need me to tell you this, but I'm going to anyway. Having a camera with you all the time in the form of a smartphone is awesome. You see something worth shooting and you stop and do so.
Such was the case when I drove past the old brickworks at sundown.
Nice colours at this time of day. You didn't need me to tell you that either.
Straight into DistressedFX to give the sky some drama.
At this time, I felt that I wanted to remove what little texture appeared on the barbed wire, in an attempt to bring it out in the image. I also wanted to go to town on the colour and tones.
I used Superimpose to lay an image upon itself. I think I would have used my favorite "multiply" option. It darkened the image up and gave some richness to the colours, but I lost definition in the barbed wire.
To bring the barbed wire definition back (and reduce the texture on it) I flattened the previous two layers in Superimpose and then superimposed the original image on top. I masked it all out, except for the wire itself. I also increased the brightness of the wire layer from within Superimpose too.
The only problem now, is that the image looks a bit fake; like the barbed wire was from a separate image that was placed over the chimney tower.
here comes the sun
I love this image. It's a genuine original. I cooked it up almost entirely on the phone, basically through intuitive play. I felt like I had invented a really good recipe. It started as a crack in a wall down the street from me.
This is basically what I started with - I may have played a little with the contrast and brightness first, but as you can see, it's just a crack in lightly-textured plaster. The texture was pretty important to this image too.
I ran the image through TinyPlanets. I'm already pleased!
Then I put it through ShockMyPic, to give it a little more definition.
Now, I need to introduce some colour to the image. There's several apps that you can do that with. 100 Cameras is one I like to experiment with occasionally. I didn't note which of the dozens of pre-set treatments I used.
It's getting interesting now.
There doesn't seem any reason to do the next step, it was just what I did when I created image. I put it through TangledFX. Again, I didn't note what setting I used.
I now felt that the circle needed to be broken. I used Repix for this. The "Daubs" stylus was used to selectively blot out areas on the crack circle. That sounds like a drug ring.
The dear, departed Laminar was used next. It had several features that were useful for deepening tones.
Sometimes, the pre-sets in Phototoaster are a waste of time. It depends on the image I'm using. Whichever pre-set I used (didn't record it) I got a pleasing, dramatic finish.
I don't know that there's anything technically good about this iPhone image. I like it because I like it. It was just about about the last frame shot in a location that I shouldn't have been in.
There's relatively little processing involved here.
Here's the original image. Not composed well and the golden beam of light is just plain annoying. I did like the reflection in the water on the floor and thought perhaps that could form a more defined element in the image if I flipped it upside down. That might also take the beam of light away from where the eye wants to go too.
I do my basic edits in Snapseed. Here, I have flipped the image, done the basic contrast adjustment and then played with the ambience setting (in "Tune Image"). Ambience is a fun setting to experiment with. I haven't yet come to terms with why sometimes an image benefits from an ambience reduction or (as in this case) an increase. I just do it.
Not entirely sure what I did next. Maybe a touch more saturation, by the look of the red chips. Whatever it was, it was done in Snapseed.
Just lately, I have discovered Oggl by Hipstamatic. Lots of fun to be had there. This edit uses the Loftus lens and Blanko Freedom 13 film.
And the final image is the result of taking it back into Snapseed for some Center Focus. The first preset is usually enough to produce a subtle and satisfying effect.
Freeway Timelapse #2
Some months ago, I bought a cheap cradle for the phone, stuck it on the windscreen and fired off a series of shots as I drove up the freeway to band practice one rainy evening. I have a cable release (also cheap) which doesn't work on every camera app, but it does work on SlowShutter. I set the shutter speed to 'B' and just held the shutter open. In this case, for 14 seconds.
This is what I got. I thought I might get something a little more interesting if I could crank up the contrast and the colours. And improve the definition. Well, I would have to, as this is pretty dull.
So, I tried maxing out the ambience in Snapseed, which sent the image in the direction for me.
I cropped the image in Snapseed too, to the 16:9 ratio, to give the image a more wide-screen feel. Then I used TangledFX to enhance the contrast and definition. I think I started with the "Small Details" button, but I also played with settings in "Tune", reducing the scale effect factor right down, so it wasn't so obvious that the image had been 'tangled'.
Next, into touchRetouch to remove some imperfections caused by the windscreen. There were several, although the only one visible here is a dark mark in the bottom right hand corner.
By now, my image has a vaguely painterly nature, so I decided to enhance that by adding a texture from Photocopier. I chose "Velazquez".
Then to finish, I increased the saturation a little in Snapseed and added a vignette with the "Center Focus" button. It's no world champ, but I liked where I was able to take the image. It looks better big, just like rock 'n' roll sounds better up loud.
I like this image a lot. It's simple, it has nice early morning light and an other-worldly feel to it. The leaves at the bottom are a bit Triffid-like, maybe that's it.
Here's what I started with. Shot on my iPhone in July, 2013 in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne.
I like to use Snapseed for cropping. The image got a fairly serious crop.
The leaf on the bottom left had to go, so I used touchRetouch for that. What an awesome app.
The next edit is in Glaze. I added some texture, using one of the 'sunset' options.
I think Repix is rather gimmicky, but it's also fun. I started to add some components to the image, using the 'stain' and 'stars' options.
Next, I took it into Laminar, to fool around some more. Sadly, Laminar is not supported by iOS 7, so I won't be using it again. I used the 'wrinkled cloth' option but I'm not sure which menu that was in.
DistressedFX was the next app to be used. I chose the 'Stirred' and 'Lade' options to treat the background. Nearly there now.
I often do my finishing up in Snapseed. Here, I have used the "center focus' feature and chose the second pre-set option, which I think is 'portrait'.
October 14th, 2013
Shot with my iPhone 5 on October 10, 2013.
I've used the following apps on this image; Leonardo, Filterstorm, Snapseed and Superimpose. Some of the processing had to be done on the phone, as my iPad 1 can't cope with large-ish images and Leonardo isn't available for iOS 5.
Here's what I started with. These were big windows, but rather high on the wall. I held the phone high overhead to try and avoid vertical lines that converged towards the top. Nearly got there.
Seeing as the windows were so tall, I decided I wanted to edit the image into one with similar dimensions.
I opened the image in Leonardo and did a rough crop at 2:3. Using the perspective tool, I tried to straighten the edges of the window. Then I cropped again (same ratio) this time, more carefully.
I've now got an image a little less than 2000 pixels tall, which is smaller than I like. When I crop an image heavily, I have found Filterstorm to be useful in re-sizing the image. I have no idea whether this is a sound technique, but what the hey. Filterstorm has a tab called "Canvas". Click that, then choose "Scale" and type in your desired new dimensions. Then click "Scale" again, which takes you back to where you can save the image.
Time to do some work on the tones, so I open the image in Snapseed.
One of the great features in Snapseed is the "selective adjustment" button. I placed an adjustment point in one of the window sections and increased the brightness (+30), the contrast (+70) and saturation (+30). You can click on the adjustment point and copy it. Then click somewhere else in the image and paste that same adjustment point. I did that in each of the six sections of the window.
I shoot for fun, with a Sony A7rIII, a Mavic Pro and my trusty iPhone 11.