In the amateur digital photography world, there is usually three main opinion groups when the subject is photo editing:
• The purist: the photo is what it is, don’t you dare manipulate it’s final result. Doing so is considered as lying visually.
• The moderate: the photo ain’t bad as it is, but a few tweaks are in order, usually sticking to the cropping/color/saturation/contrast settings.
• The funky creative: the more editing, the merrier! The original photograph is seen more as a starting point than a result, such as a painter would perceive a canvas.
I would say I’ve been standing pretty firmly for years in the “moderate” category, perhaps because of my graphic design background, and being used to use Photoshop. Plus, I think tweaking photos is fun, weird me. ;)
I am also a believer that for an amateur, all photography tools are acceptable, and that each option has it’s good and bad sides. So yes, I also think phone/iPod/tablets photography have their value as well, and so does Instagram and editing apps. To me, it’s all about how you use it, and if you can see it for what it is, which makes photography accessible to pretty much anyone nowadays.
I would say my own Instagram is a half of “show and tell” (in which I just want to show something and the actual picture result/quality doesn’t quite matter much to me), a quarter for work specific images, and the last quarter as a photography artistic outlet.
Last Sunday, I downloaded (for free) an app for my iPod touch (I don’t have a cell) called iColorama S (regular price of $2,99). (And NO, I was not asked, nor am I paid to give a review of it, lol!) I mostly use “App Of The Day” to snatch up some paying photography apps for free, so it was a lucky day! haha!
Anyway, I had taken a picture the night before that needed editing before adding it to my IG (Instagram).You can see above the original un-modified iPod Touch shot. Kinda boring a bit, no?
And so yesterday I played around with the new app, starting with regular classic adjusting tools such as cropping and color, as you can see above. Already a little more graphic and dramatic! This was going to be my basis for the other tweaking testings…
I then went to explore more functions, starting with some bolder, but still sort of “classic” settings, as seen above. I have to say that what I liked most is that almost each option has precise settings that you can adjust even more, giving you quite a lot of control over the end result. You can also decide to save or not your modifications in one option before going to another, practical!
After that, I fell on the mirror function, and I was thinking this option would be like in most apps, meaning that either top or bottom half, or, left or right side would be mirrored and that would be pretty much it as far as possibilities goes. But oh, turns out the X and Y mirrors can be a lot more manipulated than that! AND both at the same time too. FINALLY!! I had LOTS of fun with it creating patterns and shapes that were not really even there to start with, as you can see! lol
Then I decided to go see the world as a “funky creative”, even tho these kinds of filters and options are not usually my cup of tea… Turns out, I kinda liked some of them. Mostly the “drawing” one (because I can’t really draw and gives me an idea of how it *could* look if I did, or something like that. lol), and the “pixel” ones that I thought could look interesting in a precise project or idea, or for global inspiration. Some were “cartoon looking”, others a bit much for me (such as the Escher twirl one, which I know, yes, that HE is an awesome artist, but I can’t see much how to use this filter myself).
All in all, what I’m trying to say, is that, without anyone proclaiming themselves an actual pro photographer, anyone can have fun with photography and editing, even on just a phone, and even if just for the sake of personal visual contributions to one’s life.
And yes, Instagram is totally okay if that’s all you have and/or want to actually use. As proof, go check out one of my friends’ account that I think takes full advantage of IG and photo editing via apps: aelxndr. What you think? :)