Photo apps you'd like to find under the tree

sent via iphone with Hipstamatic and Motion Picture app effects. (and thanks richard koci hernandez for the app suggestion.)


Added later:

I hadn't see any iPhone apps that could upload directly to Blogger, so we tried the Motion Picture app, and here are the results. Pretty slick. Also, the tremendous number of photo apps for mobile phones makes makes me wish that we had as many choices when we're editing photos at the desktop.

Along those lines, here's a list of the photo apps I like the best. I'm always watching for new ones, and you probably are too. Feel free to share any that you like a lot:

Hipstamatic: Of course. Easily one of the all-time greats. They got the effects really right, and so what if you see them everywhere? They're beautiful.

Instagram: The latest and the greatest way to share photos with your friends and the photo community. (See post below for more thoughts.)

Mill Colour: A very sophisticated set of controls for adjusting gamma, exposure, and other values, with a nice set of effects, as well.

Best Camera: The mobile phone app from Chase Jarvis, based on the thinking that the best camera is the one you have with you. Heavy emphasis on sharing and participating, but the effects aren't the most interesting. But it's impossible to argue with the logic: Photography isn't about the equipment, it's about vision.

Camera Bag: One of the best early apps, and I find myself still using it for the "Helga" effect alone. Simple and straightforward, a very easy way to take, process, and share mobile photos.

PS Express: The photo app from Photoshop, and how can you quibble with the masters of image handling? Still, it's not my favorite app for adjusting values; the sliders are clunky and inexact when I use them, but your results may vary.

Lo Mob: An extensive library of film-like effects, everything from overlapping 35mm film in a medium format camera to through-the-viewfinder looks. Worth it just for the niche factor.

Photogene: My favorite app for making simple adjustments to exposure and levels and for cropping. Easy and straightforward, and easy sharing, too.

The Photographers Ephemeris: An amazingly powerful app that can help you get that picture of, say, the full moon rising over Alcatraz Island. The app lets you plot the paths of the rising and setting sun and moon, and figure out when and where you  have to be to get the shot you want. Really good for when you're getting ready to travel.

Quad Camera: Take four shots in quick succession, and this app will combine them into one photo for you. You can also adjust the time between shutter clicks.

Photo Calc: A very nice reference tool to have in your pocket for figuring out equivalent exposures, depth of field values and other basic but sometimes complicated stuff. No math required, which in my book is a big plus.

Photo Studio: A vast selection of effects, and the cool thing here is that you can layer them any way you like, then save the process as a preset to use again.

Strobox: Did you come up with a lighting configuration that you'd like to save? Or did you come across one that you'd like to try later? This app makes it easy to generate lighting diagrams.

Camera Plus: The interesting thing here is that pictures are saved to a "lightbox," where you can process and post them later. It makes it possible to take pictures faster and then let the phone crunch the big files later.

Shake It: Instant photography for the mobile phone. Development is affected by motion, so you can shake your phone like you used to shake your Polaroid while it developed.

True HDR: This app takes three exposures at different exposure values, then merges them for an HDR-like result. I've had mixed success with this one, but they seem to be rolling out updates on a regular basis, so it's worth watching as the app evolves.

Blend Cam: Take multiple exposures with your phone, or layer images from your photo library. You get to choose a variety of blending modes, too. Very cool, very fun.

360: A very easy way to take 360-degree panoramic photographs. No stitching necessary.

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