Some of our best memories are made outside—on the go, on the trail, and on the water. But how do you capture those moments? Bulky, high tech cameras make for great images but are a pain to lug around, not to mention risky to take on the trail or water.
Yet even the little digital cameras pose a burden as just another thing to carry. So, until recently, the visual memoirs from our best adventures have been relegated to the recesses of our minds. That is, until smart phones brought a new option to the trail. iPhone photography apps have changed photography for active people.
"When you're active and out there, you can stop for a second, take a quick pic with your iPhone and then you're gone," says Ramon Purcell, who enjoyed a career as a professional surf photographer before becoming a creative, commercial advertising photographer. In fact, one of Purcell's recent seminars at San Diego City College covered iPhone photography tips.
Purcell has travelled the world lugging heavy, cumbersome and ultra-expensive equipment. "That speed makes all the difference. You can shoot anything, anytime, anywhere. I go on [personal] trips and I don't even bring a camera anymore. I just bring my iPhone. If you would have told me, years ago, that I'd be doing this on my Blackberry, I would have laughed at you."
Here are some of his tips for taking really cool photos with iPhone photography apps.
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Ramon's Favorite iPhone Photography Apps
Camera Plus: "This is a big hitter for post-production stuff," Purcell says. You can manipulate your images to look grainy or funky, '70s, whatever you want. It's fun."
AutoStitch Panorama: This app is great for hikers because it creates panoramas for you. "It's really cool. You take frame after frame and make sure they each overlap by about 20 percent and then the app puts it all together for you," Purcell explains.
Hipstamatic: "No brainer," he says. This community of iPhone photographers is the perfect place for your amazing photos.
HDR Fusion: "This takes two or three images and merges them together. If you have an underexposed, dark image, it'll bring the light up or it'll balance out an overexposed image."
Slow Shutter: This app takes long exposure photos that will show streaking lights, blurs and movement. Purcell describes the effect as psychedelic and suggests it for bike rides or action, fast moving activities.