10 apps for enhancing iPhone photos

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A good photo editing app can add mood and alter colors to clarify your vision of your dog or any of your photos.
A good photo editing app can add mood and alter colors to clarify your vision of your dog or any of your photos.
Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac

One of my favorite observations by a now-forgotten sage explained the difference between writing and photography like this: A bad sentence can be massaged, but nothing helps a bad photo.

So true. However, I’ve experienced for myself how a good photo-editing app can salvage sloppy composition or bad exposure — and even teach you something along the way. So if you resolve to become a better photographer in 2017, you might want to add some tools to put a finer finish on your iPhone photos.

Apple fan uses two first-gen iPhones: One for calls, one for trippy pics

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Joe Cunningham
We don't remember the original iPhone camera taking photos like this!
Photo: Joe Cunningham

Joe Cunningham loves the original iPhone so much that he carries two of them — one for calls and texts, and one for taking trippy photos enhanced by a mysterious glitch in the decade-old device.

Like the kind of haunted handset you’d find in a Stephen King novel, the second iPhone exhibits a strange quality: It takes pictures that look like they’re the result of a bad acid trip.

“The psychedelic iPhone only gets used as a camera because I want to extend its life as long as possible,” Cunningham told Cult of Mac.

Big-league sports photog talks going pro with iPhone

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Sports photographer Brad Mangin gets a lot of assignments these days to shoot with his iPhone.
Sports photographer Brad Mangin gets a lot of assignments these days to shoot with his iPhone.
Photo: Martha Jane Stanton

Sports photographer Brad Mangin used to rush to an airport after a big game to get several rolls of film on the next flight to New York for processing and editing. He never saw what he shot until it was on the cover or a two-page spread in the latest Sports Illustrated.

Now his colleagues with their heavy DSLR cameras, lenses, and a laptop to transmit photos laugh when they see Mangin with his gear – an iPhone and maybe an external battery.

New case lets photographers mount ZEISS lenses on iPhone 7

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ExoLens, which partnered with ZEISS for a pro line of iPhone lenses last year, will soon offer a protective case for the iPhone 7 to accommodate the lenses.
ExoLens, which partnered with ZEISS for a pro line of iPhone lenses last year, will soon offer a protective case for the iPhone 7 to accommodate the lenses.
Photo: ExoLens

When lens maker ZEISS partnered with ExoLens to bring pro optics to the iPhone, mobile photographers had to make a choice between having great lenses or a protective case for the phone.

Now ExoLens has solved that, at least for the iPhone 7, with a protective case that will accommodate the ZEISS line of lenses. The new ExoLens Case will be on display at CES in Las Vegas this week and will be available for purchase within the next couple of months.

Why the iPhone 7 Plus camera is a major milestone

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The iPhone 7 Plus made 2016 a memorable year for photography.
The iPhone 7 Plus made 2016 a memorable year for photography.
Illustration: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

2016 Year in Review Cult of Mac We roll our eyes when Tim Cook introduces a new iPhone and says, “This is the best iPhone ever” each year. But the iPhone 7 Plus will be different.

Sure, ambitious upgrades remain in the pipeline, but the remarkable camera in the iPhone 7 Plus will make this year’s model memorable. Fifty years from now, photography historians will talk about the iPhone 7 Plus they way they do the first Leica or the first Polaroid.

Dual-lens zoom kit pushes iPhone 7 Plus camera further

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Hey four eyes! The Kamerar ZOOM lens attachment expands the telephoto/zoom capabilities of the dual-lens iPhone 7 Plus.
Hey four eyes! The Kamerar ZOOM lens attachment expands the telephoto/zoom capabilities of the dual-lens iPhone 7 Plus.
Photo: Ztylus and Kamerar

The geeky excitement shared by mobile photographers over the dual-camera of the iPhone 7 Plus has not waned.

And as they’ve played with the small optical zoom and blurring backgrounds in portrait mode, two small accessories companies have been quietly but furiously developing a two-lens attachment dedicated to enhancing the reach of the 7 Plus camera.

Boost your iPhone photography with this folding, pocket-size tripod [Deals]

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This fully featured, sturdy tripod folds up into credit card size and fits right into your wallet.
This fully featured, sturdy tripod folds up into credit card size and fits right into your wallet.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Want to take better smartphone photos without lugging around gear like a professional? Tripods are an essential tool for taking solid photos — or just engaging in a steady FaceTime conversation — and now you can get one that’ll fit right in your wallet.

The Pocket Tripod PRO is winning praise from the likes of Steve Wozniak for its clever design and convenience. (“Blew me away,” Woz told Gizmodo.) And right now you can get this miniaturized tripod for just $19.99 at Cult of Mac Deals.

iPhone photographer unboxes surprise gift from Apple

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Cielo de la Paz shares her first look at a book produced by Apple that features the photographers from the
Cielo de la Paz shares her first look at a book produced by Apple that features the photographers from the "Shot on iPhone 6s" campaign.
Photo: Cielo de la Paz/YouTube

If you like watching a kid opening a gift at Christmastime, you might delight in watching a video posted by iPhone photographer Cielo de la Paz that shows her opening an unexpected gift from Apple.

For the second straight year, the self-taught photographer had one of her pictures selected for Apple’s “Shot on iPhone” marketing campaign. In addition to compensation for use of the photos for the campaign, Apple surprises the photographers with a coffee table book displaying photos selected for the Apple World Gallery.

iPhone is the camera used most in millions of photos on Flickr

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iPhone Camera
You could grab your DSLR. Nah, the iPhone will do the job.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Once again, the world’s most popular camera is a phone.

Smartphones, led by Apple’s iPhone, was the type of camera used most by photographers in 2016 on the photo-sharing site Flickr, according its annual analysis of EXIF data on pictures uploaded to the site.

The iPhone was in the hands of shooters for 47 percent of the pictures uploaded to Flickr. Canon and Nikon were second and third with 24 and 18 percent.

iPhone app gives digital shooters a taste of film

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FB
This app may inspire you to grab an old camera and shoot a roll of film.
Photo: Filmborn screenshot/Mastin Labs

What is the best way to convince a global community of mostly digital photographers that they should pick up an old camera and shoot film? Put film on the iPhone.

That is exactly what Seattle-based Mastin Labs has done with its new film emulation app for iOS, Filmborn.