Chase Jarvis said "The best camera is the one that's with you.", and that one that's with most people these days is their smartphone. It's pretty easy to rely on a camera as an excuse for good or bad pictures, and I would even be guilty of that. At the end of the day, though, it's the eye of the photographer that decides whether or not a good picture can be found. I'm definitely still working on that. But working under constraints always helps one to grow, and better appreciate the extra capabilities afforded by better cameras (more on the camera I use in next week's blog post).
I have an album on my Facebook page containing some of the iPhone photography. Much of it is taken in very odd places, from all around the province(s), as I travel a lot, and I can't always have a camera hanging around my neck.
I downloaded an interesting app called Hydra the other day, and gave it a whirl on my iPhone 6. Hydra takes up to 100 photos at once, and then combines them all together to form higher resolution images than the iPhone is capable of taking on its own, up to 36mpx. It also has some pretty hardcore HDR functionality as well. On a sensor as tiny as a cell phone's, even one as advanced as the iPhone 6, it's hard to capture high dynamic range things like snow and sunlight beaming through a window.
Hydra performed admirably, however. The pictures result in a slightly surreal atmosphere, which can be pretty enjoyable.
You can find the app in the App Store here
Here are a few more shots from my iPhone collection. Sharing them makes me a bit uncomfortable, because they weren't taken with the very best camera. But a good picture is a good picture, regardless of what camera it was captured with.
Every year many people say "Soon you won't need a dedicated camera for anything, your smartphone camera will be just as good, or at least good enough! " That statement ignores the advancement of technology across all other areas as well. As the cameras in smartphones advance, so do the larger, and more "professional" dedicated cameras. Better low light performance (the Sony A7s can take pictures in nearly pitch dark lighting), faster shutters, higher resolutions and more accurate colors will always come first and more prominently to these larger beasts. And as the screens and mediums on which we view these images continue to advance, our taste in viewing images will always be evolving as well. There was a time, not too long ago, when it was said that 3Mpx was as high a resolution as would ever be practically needed. But on a Retina MacBook, pictures of those size just don't cut it. On a 4k display? Forget about it. All pixels and banding. You might say "but I don't have a 4k display!" But you will, someday.
Everything changes. And these are exciting times to be taking pictures. With an iPhone or with anything else.