We’ve found 6 products that’ll turn your photography from faux to pro [Deals]

The Lytro is the first consumer lightfield camera, turning photos into living moments to be explored
The Lytro is the first consumer lightfield camera, turning photos into living moments to be explored
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Everyone’s a photographer these days, or at least that’s what people would have you believe. Making images that have impact takes more than a camera-phone — it takes special gear, knowledge, and skill with photographic hardware and software. We’ve got all those bases cover with these six deals, from lenses to lessons, cutting-edge cameras and powerful photo apps. Check them out now — these deals might disappear before you can say ‘cheese’.

App Watch: Homemade photo filters, self-scheduling calendar and more

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App Watch: Aug. 25, 2014

This week we get creative, making our own photo filters with Vibrance, writing stuff in the amazing Matcha text editor, and scheduling efficient days to fit it all in with Timeful. What are you waiting for? Check out the most interesting new iOS apps and updates in our weekly roundup.

Camu

Camu is a fantastic new camera app that combines all the essentials into one slick, superbly-designed and fun to use app. Plus, thanks to smart design and gestures, you can use it one handed. Swipe to change filters, swipe again to change their strength, tap to take split-screen (diptych) pictures, add captions and blur and share. A really nice photo app and – amazingly – it’s $Free

Matcha

Matcha is so well designed you’ll want to write, just to use it. The text editor syncs with Dropbox and iCloud, and gives a great Markdown preview, but the point here is the details (and the beautiful, simple interface). You get full text search, right from a nav box at the top of the screen. And this means full – it digs into your entire Dropbox to search file names and paths, and inside local files’ contents. It has full (external) keyboard control, lots of (on-screen) keyboard tweaks, plus way more. It’s so well put together that it’s my new favorite text editor on iOS. $5

1Password iOS 8 Extension

You know how some smart apps have a little 1Password icon next to the login field, to quickly take you to the 1Password iOS app to grab your details? In iOS 8, that button could pop open a 1Password window right there in the app, allow you to auto-fill passwords and even payment fields without leaving the app. You know, like you can already do in OS X. Want to know how this awesome feature works? Read the AgileBits blog post.

Blogo 2

Somewhat inexplicably there are almost no decent blogging apps on the Mac – you’re forced to contend with your blogging service’s lame web interface instead. Blogo brings together a text editor, an image editor, offline mode and Evernote sync. It also looks fantastic, which is a boon if your job is to stare at a text editor all day long. $15

Contexts

Contexts offers four ways to switch windows on your Mac. Hover over its mini Dock-like switcher at the side of your screen and click, or hit ⌘-Tab and access the keyboard-triggered popover. This floating popover lets you keep tabbing between windows, or get direct access by tapping a number key, or by search to narrow down your windows by title or app. It’s dead simple, and it acts on individual windows in apps, not just the whole app itself. $9 with free trial

Vibrance

Vibrance lets you create your own photo filters on-the-fly. Take or load up a photo from your camera roll and either choose a built-in filter or make your own. A slider runs from dark to light, and you can tweak the color of any tone along that slider, giving, say, bluish shadows, yellow highlights and a little purplish kick in the dark mid-tones. It’s simple and powerful, but the interface is a little clunky. Free with IAP

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Timeful

Timeful combines your calendars and reminders, and then helps you with your scheduling. It will suggest times for new tasks and appointments, and even help to schedule routine tasks like exercise or shopping. It’s location -aware, it syncs with your existing calendars and it even makes adding a new event easy, letting you pick between reminders of calendar entries as you go. $Free

Lytro

Lytro’s new app lets you view its light-field camera photos on your iOS device. The Lytro is that weird camera that lets you adjust the focus of you picture after you take the shot. Previously you needed a desktop computer with a desktop browser to display these interactive photos, but now you have this Universal app. It’s basic, just like the camera, but it’ll let you view your own publicly-shared Lytros, along with anyone else’s. $Free

500px for Lightroom

This plugin lets you upload your photos from Lightroom, straight to the “thinking person’s photo-sharing site,” 500px. Just drag the pictures you want to share to the new 500px publish service and they’ll be sent to your online portfolio. It can even read and write comments and lets you view your site stats from within Lightroom. $Free

Lytro Illum, The First Light-Field Camera Worth Buying

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Lytro’s new Illum field Camera is the first of its products you’ll want to buy. The original Lytro Field Camera was a nice proof of concept, but the low resolution images were pretty crappy, and the unit itself was one of the least ergonomic camera designs I’ve ever seen.

The Illum still has some ergonomics issues, but promises much better pictures.

Apple Patents Magic Tech That Will Let You Refocus Your iPhone Photos

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One of our favorite toys here at Cult of Mac is the the Lytro, a bizarre and radically cool digital camera that allows you to refocus your images after you snap them. The Lytro is fairly big — it’s about the size of a small flashlight — and the pictures it outputs are pathetically low-resolution by modern smartphone standards, but the promise is obvious: with the Lytro, you might never take a bad photo again.

The Lytro’s so incredible that before he died Steve Jobs reportedly wanted to put its light field technology into the iPhone. Today, Apple has patented a method of doing just that.