I take a LOT of pictures.
I always have. I have boxes and boxes of photos from middle school, high school, and college in my parent’s basement. And then about sophomore year in college digital cameras came around and I was done.
I have thousands and thousands of pictures saved on hard drives. And the good thing about digital? You can ALL the pictures in a teeny tiny external hard drive. Blurry picture? Save it with the rest of them! Or, delete it on your camera before it even gets to the computer. Pretend like that shot of me with my eyes half-way closed didn’t happen.
No big deal.
But now that I have the phone-love-of-my-life iPhone and it’s camera is a bazillion times better than my first or even second digital camera, I take pictures all of the time. I’m sure you do, too. It’s just so easy to pull out the phone that you were already tweeting or texting on and just switch it over to being a camera.
Hey, let’s document this dinner we’re making. Let’s capture that really dumb thing that our friend just did. Let’s take evidence that we were here, that we saw these things, that we existed and we changed our little piece of the world. Take a picture and there is proof!
So naturally, with my iPhone I started getting into Instagram (which, if you have an iPhone and you aren’t on, get it! It’s free and it is my absolute favorite app.), and I started messing with the new editing capabilities of the regular iPhone camera.
But sometimes I just want to take a million pictures (like on the Camera) and then put funky and cool filters on them (like Instagram) while editing and cropping and fixing and changing later, not now.
Camera+ is awesome. It costs about $2.99 or so in the app store, and it is WELL worth the price. There are settings to enrich the colors and lighting in your photos as well as filters to screw around and make your pictures look any which way you’d like them to. You can crop and adjust and flip and add borders. I love it.
So I’m going to show it off to you using one of the many great pictures with Max from my vacation.
Camera+ lets you either import pictures you have already taken or take pictures through it’s own camera setting. Then it saves those pictures you’ve taken into it’s “Lightbox”, where you can view them all to edit, share on Facebook or Twitter, or save.
And then Edit away!
My first step is always getting the lighting right. Under “Scenes” there are all kinds of different adjustments based on lighting that really make your pictures look great. There are settings for Sunsets, Food, Concerts, Profiles, Nighttime, Shade, and Fluorescent Lighting. Usually, Auto works the best for everyday pictures.
Next, I like to crop my pictures. Typically, I use Golden, but this picture just called for a Square crop. There are also 4×6, 5×7, 8×10… Whatever works for your shot.
Here’s where it gets fun. Camera+ has a ton of awesome filters to make your pictures look crazy good, or just crazy.
I thought “So Emo” sounded fun, so I tried it out.
But it was a little too Emo for such a cute shot of Max figuring out who the heck I was. So instead I used my trusty standby, “Depth of Field”.
“Depth of Field” focuses in on the center of the photo and blurs the outer edge. And the best part about ALL of these filters is there is a sliding scale that you can add more of or less of an effect. Because I only wanted a little blur, I pulled this one down to about 60%.
Then you can add a crazy, tacky border…
…Or a slightly more subdued one.
I tend to stick to “Thin Black”. I know, boring. But it looks great with food pictures. And I take a lot of food pictures!
Once your picture looks just about how you want it, you can save it to your Camera Roll where you can access it from your phone’s picture library and then, eventually, your Photostream.
And then, Viola!! A great picture of the three Bylsma (/Mathews) kids and the Bylsma grandkid!!