Sunday, January 25, 2015

Focus on Phoneography

There were such lovely Music of the Night photos on the Instagram feed this week. Here are just four of them. Be sure to take a look on IG if you haven't been there lately, there are some beautiful photos there.

Top: 1. @lclarke522   2. @jessiemixer  
Bottom:  3. @i_kimi   4. @shutterhuff

Thank you to these four photographers and all who have been playing along this month. There is one more week to go before we kick off a new theme, so be sure to add your Music of the Night photos to both the Instagram feed and the Flickr page.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Focus On You

I chose this moving image by Anita Cline for our Focus On You feature this week. Besides having a very emotional subject, (Anita's daughter-in-law) this is a perfect example of being in the dark, but using an external light source to light the subject. What an evocative image - isn't that the reaction that we all strive for?

Anita is a frequent contributor here at FOL. You can see more of her work
here,   here or here!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Who Would've Thunk

by Deanna

Ok I have to start this post with a major mea culpa, aka oops or confession time.  Last year at this time and for months before and months after I literally pooh poohed taking pictures with my smart phone.  My argument was "why would you take pictures with your phone when you have spent hundreds of dollars on a good camera and good lenses?", a valid argument I thought convincingly. And then in October I upgraded my I-Phone to the new 6 and wow did that change my thinking completely.  Number one the Apple people got on board with improving the "native" camera (the camera app that comes with the phone) and omg number 2, there are hundreds of new apps out in the App world that take an ordinary image and transform it into little pieces of art.

You know I have no little children at home so posting my everyday life is not filled with gleeful children taking baths, or riding bikes, or performing their 2nd grade Christmas concert much to the delight of Moms and Dads.  My ordinary life captured in I-Phone images is usually the everyday beauty of my surroundings, nature, the seasons, interesting structures, my kids (aka dogs).

So today I want to share with you some of my favorite apps.  This will not be a tutorial, since I am still figuring out some of these apps myself, but I do recommend them. Just download and play, there is always a delete or back button, so come on let the merriment begin.  Now I will tell you that not all of these apps are free, in fact most of the really good ones are not, but after spending $$$'s on lenses, $2.99 is literally a drop in the bucket.  And yes, it is a one-time charge....I asked that same question when I began this new I-Phoneography adventure.

OK first up "Waterlogue".  This was the very first app I downloaded because it is just too darn fun and turns an ordinary picture into a little water-color like beauty.  I said this will not be a tutorial but I will add this, I always do a little editing in the "camera" app usually just lightening and then once you have brought your picture into the Waterlogue app, I always choose "illustration" to transform my images.

I know you saw this one on my last FOL post, but I have to brag just a little, this was chosen by the Waterlogue site as the "image of the day" last Sunday.  I beamed.  Many of the apps have a site and if you #tag them sometimes you get lucky and may be featured on their Instagram site.

And you know how I love me some red barns...

Next up....DistressedFX  this app adds some interesting textures to your images.  And a bonus is a feature with "birds" to give your oftentimes boring skies some action.  The above image was edited in Waterlogue and then I added some DistressedFX to add texture to the sky and the bonus feature, a group of birds.  Ta Da

Next up....My Sketch...My good friend, Marti gave me this idea.  She has a 3 year old granddaughter that loves to color.  She takes pictures using this app and then prints them out for her to have fun coloring.  But I use the "colored pencil" design within this app to create these little gems.

A wilted tulip...

For Downton Abbey fans....

OK I know not everyone likes HDR and I admit it can get a bit over dramatic, but sometimes I like that drama in selected images.  I have 2 apps for this process, Pro HDR and Simply HDR.  If you like the look I would encourage you to give it a whirl.  And yes, both have a charge.

Chicago from a flight returning home....

And a couple of "font programs" with added flourishes are Word Swag and Rhonna that are fun to play with.  And finally, I will have to say that Instagram did a bang-up job when they upgraded, great new filters and editing options.

So there....a few of the many, many apps that are available to phone photographers of which I can now say I am one of the bunch, I have found an added "tribe".

© Focusing On Life