SCIENCE AND TECH
12 Apps to Enhance Your Mobile Photography
When you’re constantly travelling, taking photographs of where you are and what you’ve seen is the best way to feel connected to the people at home. Given the plethora of apps for editing, sharing and organizing out there, how are you supposed to know which ones are best suited to you?
There’s an app out there for you whether you’re a landscape enthusiast, a selfie taker or an aspiring graphic artist. There’s an app for you whether you feel compelled share photographs with loved ones, a group of close friends or with the world. And when you arrive home, be sure to organize your pictures to keep track of those memories wherever you go. Below, we highlight 12 terrific apps that will enhance your mobile photography. All of them are available for iOS and Android devices; if an app is available on BlackBerry, we’ve specifically noted it.
Best for: anyone who wants an all-around shooting and editing app
For those who need to quickly spruce up their mobile photographs, Fotor gets the job done. It has a fairly easy-to-understand interface equipped with a “focus” feature that allows you to shoot as if you’re actually using an SLR camera. The one-tap enhancement and array of filters makes this app ideal for sunsets, landscapes and scenery.
PicsArt Photo Studio
Best for: those who want an editing app that gives you full creative control
PicsArt Photo Studio is not for the novice photo editor. This app has one of the most robust collections of enhancing and editing tools, with artistic features that can turn your photography into something entirely unique. Once you download the app, it’s easy to import images from your phone, Facebook, Dropbox or Flickr, but you’ll probably have to spend some time learning the ropes. Your patience will be rewarded with a truly impressive portfolio. Available on BlackBerry.
Best for: aspiring graphics creators and meme authors
Ever wonder how people come up with those pictures emblazoned with sayings like “live free,” showcased in snazzy typography and artwork, come from? The answer: people make them, using an app like Qwik. Offering 51 fonts, 43 frames and more than 600 pieces of artwork, it can instantly turn you into a graphic artist.
Best for: selfie enthusiasts
It’s possible to use an app to soften your skin, make your teeth look whiter and create angles in your face that weren’t necessarily there before. With Facetune, portrait retouching is simple. You can blur out the background, fix your red eyes and smooth out your skin. It’s just the thing for your inner Kim Kardashian.
Best for: photography buffs who appreciate a minimalist interface
Check out VSCO’s Instagram account and you’ll notice one thing: the people who use VSCO have an extremely good eye for proportions. The camera component comes with helpful features like a line-of-thirds grid and white balance. The interface is minimalist is in its iconography, which you’ll have to navigate simply by getting used to it. With a dozen or so effects, and inspiration coming right from VSCO’s website, just begin shooting and VSCO will do the rest.
Best for: private photo sharing
Let’s face it, Snapchat isn’t for everyone. Cluster is the a private photo-, video- and note-sharing app that allows you to create groups of people with whom you want to share your life. Create multiple albums, invite people to join the groups, or give individuals a code to access content.
Best for: graduates of using VSCO Cam
There is so much exceptional photography on 500px that their website reads, “home to everyone’s best photos.” Download 500px if you’re at the stage in the game where you feel proud of your photography. You can showcase up to 20 photos per week. It’s inspiring to see the breadth of photographic genius on 500px, and even more inspiring to be a part of it.
Best for: Using as your second-most-valuable travel companion (after BILLY, of course)
When you’re in a new city, do you ever wonder where you can find the best brunch place nearby? Where’s the best place to sit and have a snack? Where can you find good cocktail? Trover has the answer. It uses GPS to find your location while pulling up user-generated photographs of the “best ofs” in the area that have been uploaded by other Trover users.
Best for: Sharing photos with Luddites
The trouble with some apps is that you can’t share photos with people who haven’t downloaded the app themselves. This app allows you to take photos, add commentary and string them together in a “moment” which you can send to anyone via SMS, Twitter or Facebook.
Best for: Romantics; people who are nostalgic for Polaroid cameras
If mixtapes and flared jeans can be revived, why not bring back Polaroid-style instant photography? Use the Printic app to choose photos from your phone, Facebook or Instagram and then order a box of up to 50 individual prints of the pictures. You can also use your smartphone snaps as the art for calendars, posters and fridge magnets. This French company sends the photos straight to your mailbox (or your friend’s, your mother’s or your girlfriend’s mailbox), anywhere in the world.
Best for: Just plain making your life easier
You have a great photograph, which you've uploaded onto your computer, and now you want to share it on Instagram. Here’s the problem: you somehow need to get that picture onto your mobile or tablet. Lyve is the first app that works across a number of platforms – Kindle Fire, Macs, Windows PCs, iOS and Android. Download it onto any of your devices (computer, tablet or phone) and it'll sync all the all the photos from each device into one unified photo album.
Best for: Organizing photos so you don’t have to
Bundle has an album-making feature unlike any other. It employs an artificial intelligence concept called “machine learning technology,” essentially teaching itself how to group your photos after you’ve done it a couple of times. For those unsatisfied with the default album settings on their phones, Bundle is for you.