I’ve written a lot about Instagram here, I know. (Instagram – iPhone photo-sharing app. Keep up with me, people.) But, you guys, it is like a core part of my very being. It is how I am recording my children’s lives. It matters. And it matters almost as much as the Camera+ app.
I couldn’t use Instagram if I didn’t have Camera+. I mean, I could – I did, for quite a while, before I discovered Camera+ – but I wouldn’t be using it as awesomely. And awesome is what matters, right?
Camera+ is a photo-editing application that you use right on your phone. I’ve actually got about four folders of photo-editing applications on my phone – each of these folders contains a dozen editing apps, among them PhotoShop Express and CameraBag and TiltShift Generator, and a whole host of novelty editing apps, like Grungetastic and Tiny Planets and Percolator – but Camera+ is the one that I use the most. It’s become my go-to express photo-editing app (Picnik is my go-to photo-editing service online, and PhotoShop is my big gun), mostly because a) it’s easy, b) it has a tremendous range of one-tap editing lenses and filters (which means that you don’t have to fiddle with exposure and saturation settings to get just the right combination; Camera+ has a great variety of pre-set options – one tap of the finger makes your selection, one tap undoes it if you don’t like it, one tap saves it if you do), c) it’s not such a vast range of options that using the app is disorienting (I don’t need hundreds of filters, and I actually don’t want hundreds of filters because I’d never remember my preferences), and d) did I mention that it was easy? (See that whole parenthetical comment about finger tapping, above.)
Tap: Scene -> Clarity; Tap: Effects -> Color -> Magic Hour; Tap: Save; Upload to Instagram; Tap & Swipe: Tilt-Shift; DONE.
Here’s the other thing: it has its own camera functionality, so you can take your photos from within Camera+, which might not seem all that efficient – why not just use the phone’s camera, the one that’s right there in front of your finger? – until you realize that Camera+’s camera is way, way better that the iPhone’s default camera. It has a stabilizer and a timer and a burst setting, and its flash options include ‘flashlight’, which gives a soft iPhone-emitted light effect (which for some low light situations is much better than a harsh phone-camera flash.) Camera+’s camera function is much better than the default phone camera, which means that you can take a much better picture, which means that there’s less need for editing after the fact. And the photo that doesn’t need editing is the easiest photo to edit of all.
If you’re a compulsive photo-taker like me, check this out: the good folks at Intel Canada are giving away a brand new i5 laptop for the best example of a Visual Life. All you have to do is put your phone-photo-editing skills to use and then post your photographs to show how you ‘live visually.’ Check it out here.