Apps for Better iPhone Photos

As a photographer, I appreciate quality camera gear. It's nice to have a couple of camera bodies and an assortment of lenses to choose from when I'm planning a shoot. I can't carry that stuff with me everywhere though. That's why a lot of my life's candid moments get captured with the little 3-megapixel camera inside my iPhone. And, because I take so many pictures with my iPhone I've found a few tools in the app store that help me get better results.

PhotoForge
I started out using Adobe's free Photoshop app to do minor processing on my phone. That's going to work great for most people. But PhotoForge gives me a lot more tools including localized adjustments and curves. It's an amazing little program for under three bucks.
More Information at GhostBirdSoftware

FocalWare
Getting great photos with any camera is all about getting great light on your subject. The best time to shoot outdoors is around sunrise and sunset. FocalWare will tell you when you can capture that beautiful golden light. If you have an iPhone 3GS it can also use the compass to point to where the sun will be coming up and going down. Bonus: It's developed by a company here in NC (Asheville)!
More Information at SpiralDev

MoreBeaute
I was skeptical when I downloaded this free app but then I was amazed at how well it works. MoreBeaute will brighten the midtones and smooth away imperfections in skin. Be careful though, it's easy to overdo it. In fact, having the slider positioned at halfway is usually too much for me. Dial it back for a quick and subtle improvement to almost any iPhone portrait.
More Information at More-Thing Company

AutoStitch
You can make really cool panoramic photos with AutoStitch. Hold your phone in portrait orientation and use the built-in camera app to take a bunch of overlapping photos of the scene. Then open up AutoStitch, select the photos and let it combine them into one large image. If you get any weird ghosting just back up and deselect the photo that is causing the problem. Or, you can reshoot the problematic zones and add them in.
More Information at CloudBurst Research

Action 16
This one is just for fun. This app will capture up to 16 photos in rapid succession and combine them into one image. It's a quirky/interesting way to capture the movement in a scene.
More Information at Jungoklee

Flickr, Facebook, MySpace...
When you get a great photo you can share it instantly. All your favorite social networking sites have photo uploaders built into their iPhone apps. Capture, edit AND publish all from your iPhone. How did we ever live without this thing?

Bonus: Here's a quick tip to reduce blurring in your photos caused by camera shake. The iPhone's camera doesn't take a picture when you press the button. It does it when you release the button. So if you're tapping that on-screen button then you're probably shaking the phone. Put your finger on the button and hold it there. Compose your shot and, when you're ready, gently lift your finger off the screen. Keeping your phone steady will give you much sharper results. This is especially useful in low-light situations.

concord photographer