This week we read the news with NewsBlur and Unread 2, shoot faux 8mm footage with Rtro, and spend $20 on Tot, a notes app with just seven pages.
Panoramas are those super-wide, letterboxed strips of photos that look spectacular, and that are impossible to fit into Instagram. Maybe you already shoot a lot of panoramas, and maybe you even use the pano camera to create amazing glitch photos.
But did you consider that panoramas don’t have to be super-wide? They don’t even have to be horizontal. Let’s take a look at vertical panoramas — the iPhone photographer’s surprisingly great secret weapon.
Today’s release of iOS 13.2 brings Apple’s new Deep Fusion feature, so iPhone 11 owners can start taking beautifully detailed photographs of sweaters. But if you have an older iPhone, Halide has you covered. The iOS photo app’s new Smartest Processing update brings Deep Fusion-style detail to anybody’s sweater shots.
The iPhone’s incredible Portrait mode does a great job of blurring the backgrounds of photos, making the subject stand out from busy backdrops. (Apple also uses this depth information for its truly awful Portrait Lighting effects — has anyone ever gotten a good result from the Stage Light filter? — but that’s another story.)
What if you could use the depth information inside Portrait photos to get rid of the background entirely? Wouldn’t that be something? Well, yes it would. And if you have the right app, it’s really easy to remove photo backgrounds.
Pixelmator Photo, a new image-editing app for iPad, gives you tons of tools for tweaking your images. The app lets you apply filters, crop, trim and generally making your photos look great.
In this regard, Pixelmator Photo is like a zillion other photo apps for iOS. What sets it apart are a) the now-expected Pixelmator polish, and b) machine learning that powers pretty much everything.
I’ve taken the app, which launches today, for a quick spin, and it’s pretty great. The photo-editing space is so crowded with great apps, though, that we’re spoiled for choice. How does Pixelmator Photo match up?
Portrait mode on the iPhone XS is pretty amazing — when it works. I gave it a good, hard workout after the device’s launch in September 2018, and found it to be an almost miraculous trick to fake the optical depth of photos taken on a bigger camera.
But after using it for half a year, does Portrait mode still seem so great? No. While it’s still just as impressive, sometimes it’s so frustrating to use that I just give up, quit the Camera app, and don’t bother to take a photo at all.
Hyperspektiv is one of my favorite photo apps from the past few years. Instead of screwing with your digital photos to make them look like olde timey film photos, it screws with your digital photos to make them look crazy and awesome. It’s a glitch-style filter app, and it pretty much decimates your images, turning them into incredible video clips, and — now — still photos.
Hyperspektiv 2.0 is out, and it cranks up the heat on the image-mangling burner to H-O-T.
Nizo is a new take on video apps. It manages to blend shooting and editing together, so you can edit your movies on the fly as you capture them.
The interface to do this is — like much good design — so clean and obvious that you wonder why it wasn’t done before. Let’s take a look.
Hyperspektiv is a contradiction. Photo-editing apps are designed to make your photos look better by making them look nicer. Hyperspektiv is designed to make your photos look better by making them look worse.
Not only that, it’s one of a handful of photo apps that don’t try to mimic the limitations of film photography, like grain and light leaks. Instead, it ditches the nostalgia and uses truly digital means to glitch up your images, turning them into stills and videos that would look fantastic in a music video.
The iPhone XS’ camera is amazing, but put an unedited shot next to an unedited photo from the older iPhone X, or one of Google’s Pixel phones, and it looks a little flat. To “fix” this, you can tap the auto-enhancing Magic Wand tool on the edit screen, but this takes things too far in the opposite direction, making faces as orange as Florida bodybuilders.
I actually prefer the less-gaudy images from the XS, but sometimes they need a little extra pop. And the good news is, you don’t have to spend lots of time editing. There’s one slider built into the Photos app that will fix things up right away.
Halide, the best iPhone camera app that isn’t the iPhone’s Camera app, has gotten yet another amazing update. This time it brings a color histogram (which is actually way cooler than it sounds), plus even smarter Smart Raw.
There are a bunch of reasons to remove the background from a photo. You might just hate the background — a perfect portrait ruined by crowds, or ugly construction work, or both. You may want to remove the background in order to extract the subject — maybe you’re doing some kind of Photoshop trick, or making a greetings card.
Whatever your reasons, it’s easy to do. Removing the background from an image used to be a nightmare. Now, you just need the right app. And if you’re a regular with our Cult of Mac photo how-tos, you probably have that app already.
The Portrait Mode in the iPhone XR and XS is hands-down amazing. In the time it take to snap a photo, the camera scans the depth of the image in front of it, and uses that data to blur the background, and make the subject pop out, sharp. But it doesn’t always work. The depth detection gets confused by glass, for example, ruining what could have been an amazing image.
Today we’re going to use and app called Focos to fix these depth glitches. Focos is an all-round focusing powerhouse of an app, recently updated to support the iPad, including the new iPads Pro. The area we’ll focus on today (sorry) is the ability to edit the depth map, and paint back in the glass or hair that the iPhone missed.
Even if you don’t have much interest in editing RAW and JPG images on your iPad, you might still want to check out Darkroom. The brand-new iPad version of the popular photo app offers a view of your standard iCloud Photo Library that’s better-looking and easier to use than the native Photos app. And that’s just for starters.
This post is presented by Indice, maker of the Apollo app.
The photos you take are only as good as the lighting. That’s true no matter whether you’re using a top-of-the-line DSLR or an iPhone. The difference is, with an iPhone, you can change the lighting after you’ve taken the picture. That’s thanks to Apollo, an iOS app that uses the iPhone’s depth data to totally reimagine the lighting conditions in your photos.
Despite the great camera, taking great video with iPhone requires a few extra things. First, you’ll want something to reduce the shakiness of handheld video. Additionally, because the camera is a serious energy drain, you want something to keep your phone charged. So any iPhone videographer can get into this gimbal that does both.
The iPhone XS has an amazing camera, and the best part of that camera is the Depth Control feature, which lets you adjust the background blur after you take the photo.
This is a powerful feature, but to get the most out of it, you might want to check out these tips and tricks on using Depth Control on iPhone XS.
This weekend, you’re “enjoying” some extended time with your family. After you’ve fixed their devices, and taught them that the battery of their iPhone lasts way longer if they don’t leave the damn screen on the whole time, you might decide to swap some photos. You may grab the your old childhood snaps off your mother’s iPad, or photos of the family recipe book off your father’s iPhone.
There are a few ways to do this — slow, fast and faster, wired or wireless. Let’s see how to transfer photos between iPhones and iPads.
You’ve been able to import photos into an iPad ever since the first iPad launched. You had to buy a Camera Connection Kit to do it, which at the time consisted of two 30-pin Dock connectors, one with a USB-A port for hooking up cameras and CF readers, the other with an SD card slot. Since then, imports have gotten faster, and better. And the biggest difference with the 2018 iPad Pro is that now you can use any old USB-C card reader or hub to do the importing. Let’s see how it works.
Were you ever in the middle of trying to get that perfect photo, framing it just-so, and tweaking the exposure and focus for the perfect shot, when your mother called to remind you of your own child’s birthday? It could totally happen. And for pro photographers using the iPhone as their preferred camera (which is a great idea, BTW), the risk of interruptions is even greater.
That’s why noted iPhone photographer Austin Mann came up with a great way to shut up your iPhone while you’re busy shooting. It’s called Shoot Mode, and it’s yet another example of how useful Siri Shortcuts can be — even in tiny doses.
Apart from the screen, the big different between the iPhone XS and XR is the camera. The XS has two, and the XR only has one. This means that — like a one-eyed person — the XR camera can’t calculate the depth of objects in a scene, and therefore can’t use the Depth Blur feature to blur the background. It works around this by using clever facial recognition tricks to allow Portrait Mode with people, but that’s it.
Until now, that it. In its latest update, camera app Halide adds back this functionality to the new iPhone. That’s right. With Halide, you can take depth-effect pictures of anything with the iPhone XR.
Grab your iPhone, if you’re not holding it already. Then open the Photos app, go to the Albums tab, and scroll down. On iOS 12, you’ll see a list showing pretty much every kind of photo you have: Live Photos, Panoramas, screenshots, and a lot more. This is powerful stuff, so let’s check it out
The iPhone XS camera is pretty incredible. The device uses its two rear cameras, plus the A12 chip’s Neural Engine, to record such an accurate 3D map of the scene that you can adjust the background blur with a slider. But that depth map is useful for more than just blurring backgrounds. It can be used by other apps to:
- Add realistic lights to a scene.
- Choose any subject to be in focus, not just the one you picked when shooting.
- Add custom background blurs.
- Remove and replace backgrounds, like movie green-screen effects.
The iPhone XS is the gold standard for iOS cameras, but the XR manages some excellent tricks of its own. Despite having only one rear camera, the XR can still recognise people, and then use AI and the super-powerful A12 Neural Engine to separate out the person form the background. While this portrait matte isn’t as detailed as an iPhone XS depth map, it can in theory still be used to do many of the same tricks.
Today we’ll look at the best depth apps for the new iPhone XS, XR, and XS Max.
We’ve all taken the perfect photo, only to have to have it ruined by some unwanted element. A pole sticking out of someone’s head. A passing car in the background of an otherwise-perfect street scene. Or a political enemy in one of Stalin’s portraits.
But whereas the Soviet regime employed a team of photo retouchers to chop the gulag-bound dissidents from Stalin’s selfies, iPhone apps can remove clutter in seconds. Today we’ll see how to use my favorite: TouchRetouch.
The Portrait Mode in iPhone XS is the best thing to happen to iPhone photography in quite a while. It uses the XS’ dual cameras, plus the A12 chip’s Neural Engine, to work out how far away everything is in your photos. Then, it blurs everything in the background, just as if you used a fancy big camera.
But what if you want even more blur? The iPhone XS’ Depth Control feature looks very realistic, but maybe it’s a bit too realistic? Maybe you want to really wipe out that background with some extra blur. The good news is, there are some great apps that do that.