| Cult of Mac

Forget blur: How to cover faces and add emoji to photos

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The emoji in this picture are accurate representations of every picture of me until I was about 8. I didn't know how to smile for pictures and I did not care to learn.
The emoji in this picture are accurate representations of every picture of me until I was about 8. I didn't know how to smile for pictures and I did not care to learn.
Image: D. Griffin Jones/Cult of Mac

There are lots of times when you might want to cover up faces before posting pictures: Teachers often want to censor the faces of their students. Boudoir photographers (Google it) can censor explicit portions of their photography for social media. Foster parents who are legally prohibited from posting identifying pictures of children in their home can quickly cover them up. Forget trying to blur faces — there’s an app that makes covering up faces dead easy: MaskerAid.

If you’ve ever wanted to hide a face before posting a picture, MaskerAid (a pun on “masquerade”) will quickly censor faces with emoji. Unlike apps like Snapchat, MaskerAid will preserve the full quality and resolution of your pictures.

MaskerAid is the latest app by independent podcaster and developer Casey Liss. You can download MaskerAid here on the App Store for iPhone (there is no Android version). The app is free to try out with your own pictures, but to use the full set of emoji, you must pay a one-time purchase of $2.99.

Turn your favorite iPhone photos into museum-quality canvas prints

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Print your iPhone photos on canvas with CanvasChamp.
Print your iPhone photos on canvas for a museum-quality look.
Photo: CanvasChamp

This post is presented by CanvasChamp.

iPhones take such great pictures, it seems a shame to limit them to viewing on a screen. For a variety of reasons, the photos of friends and family that we take these days rarely end up decorating our homes the way they used to. But that’s not because it’s hard to do, or even expensive.

Shooting From the Hip showcases beautiful iPhone photos [Book review]

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iPhone photo book
Shooting From the Hip, the iPhone street photography of San Francisco's Scott Strazzante, is now for sale.
Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac

You may be tempted to marvel at Scott Strazzante’s new book, Shooting From the Hip, simply because he made all those gritty street photographs with an iPhone.

We can’t seem to get over the fact that the little wonder device in our pockets can be used to create great work. Apple touts stunning photos on big billboards, luring us with the promise that good pictures will come pouring out if we upgrade to the latest iPhone.

But photography — good photography, anyway — isn’t that simple. And to fixate on the tool Strazzante uses would be a disservice to him, and to the collection of 150 pictures inside this hardcover coffee table book.

iOS 10 beta 2, new malware targeting Macs, iPhone Photography Awards, and more

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Cover

Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

In this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine, we introduce you to the iOS 10 beta 2, and give a hands-on look at the latest tweaks and updates to Apple’s latest operating system. More than 50 changes have been discovered by developers, affecting everything from Apple Music to widgets, and we uncover many of them this week.

Learn about “OSX/Keydnap,” the latest strain of malware intended to attack your Mac. Disguising itself as an innocent text or image file, OSX/Keydnap installs malicious code onto your machine. We’ll let you know how the malware works, and how to prevent this from happening to your Mac!

Peruse the stunning images of this year’s iPhone Photography Awards winners. iPhone photography has never looked so good. Plus, The CultCast, How-Tos and lots more.

All this, and much much more, in Cult of Mac Magazine, free for you right now.

Here are this week’s top stories.

Coffee table book is self-taught photographer’s valentine to Apple design

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Jonathan Zufi's book ICONIC has been popular with Apple fans.
Jonathan Zufi's book ICONIC has been popular with Apple fans.
Photo: David Pierini/Cult of Mac

Cult of Mac 2.0 bugThe fun Jonathan Zufi had playing RobotWar on his high school’s lone Apple II in the early 1980s re-emerged one day. He just had to play it again.

The lark that led Zufi to an online search for an Apple II to play the game grew into the acquisition of more than 500 vintage Apple items, which he lovingly photographed, but then sold to fund production of a coffee table book that has sold more than 15,000 copies.

Flashback clothes are carefully crafted nuclear photobombs

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Flashback, menswear by Betabrand, uses a higly reflective material sure to make an impression in flash photos. Photo: Betabrand
Flashback menswear uses a highly reflective material that's sure to make an impression in flash photos. Photo: Betabrand

Most clothing designers like to see their clothes well photographed. Betabrand’s Steven B. Wheeler has menswear that just might ruin a photo — and that’s part of the cool factor.

Wheeler and DJ Chris Holmes teamed up to design five pieces called Flashback, clothing made of a highly reflective fabric that will bounce any iPhone flash right back through the lens.

In most cases, the result produces a nuclear look, with the silhouette of the clothes distractingly white hot. Surrounding details either get lost in the shadows or simply go unnoticed because the eyes zero in on the aura of the Flashback clothing.

5 super-quick iPhoto tips to make your photos even better

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Don't overlook this great bit of free software for your photos. Photo: Stephen Smith/Cult of Mac
Don't overlook this great bit of free software for your photos. Photo: Stephen Smith/Cult of Mac

iPhoto is a free download for everyone these days, making it a basic bit of kit for anyone dealing with the deluge of photographic data we seem to collect. Still, it’s often overlooked by the best of us because of its limitations.

That’s unfortunate, because the simple program offers some pretty useful features that can quickly let you get on with enjoying your photos rather than tweaking them.

Here are five simple tips for using Apple’s built-in photo “shoebox,” letting you make your photos better and more organized even more quickly.