I have a lot of photographic gear: cameras, lenses, tripods, drone, etc. But if I could have it my way, I would really just shoot everything on my phone. The portability, discreetness, editing and sharing capabilities of a smartphone are so convenient and powerful that for certain things, it’s really all you need. Unfortunately, there are still many limitations especially in terms of low light performance, overall image quality, and lens choices. But for some applications such as travel and street photography, a phone can be a powerful tool.
I was reminded of this the other day as I walked through the Baguio public market in the Philippines. I was shooting with my Fujifilm camera and lens when suddenly it said “Memory Full”. I had miscalculated the available space and failed to bring an extra memory card. I had no choice but to pull out my iPhone 6S+ and finish the day’s shooting with my phone. I got some shots that I’m pretty happy with.
Apps I Use
1. Lightroom Mobile – this is a very powerful mobile app that works very much like the computer version. My favorite functions are the camera for shooting in RAW (very important!) and the direct integration into Lightroom CC. The photos automatically sync and you can continue editing the raw files on your computer. But sometimes I prefer to do everything on the phone using this and the other apps I mention below.
2. VSCO Cam – I love VSCO Film simulations for Lightroom CC. I use them on most of my photos. They look great and help save a lot of editing time. VSCO Cam is the company’s mobile app which also has lots of great film simulations / filters. My favorite is the A6 analog filter, which I used on all the photos shown here.
3. Photogene⁴ – this is an older, but very powerful app that has many functions similar to Photoshop. I use it mainly for easy watermarking and export of my images.
All of the images shown here followed this workflow:
1. Shoot RAW image with Lightroom Mobile.
2. Basic adjustments with Lightroom Mobile (exposure, shadows, highlights, clarity, white balance, vignette).
3. Filter with VSCO Cam. A6 “Analog” filter was used on all the photos.
4. Watermark and resize to 2048 pixels (long side) with Photogene⁴.
I’d also like to mention that I wrote and published this whole post on my phone while relaxing and lying on my back. I wish I could do this with all of my shoots. 😉