Top 5 'Trick' Photography Apps for the iPhone
“Trick” photography is where the camera-enabled smartphone comes into its own. iPhones and their contemporaries have a surprising amount of processing-power, and plenty of apps make use of that power to do clever things to images as soon as you have taken them.
There are now a huge number of high-quality apps dedicated to the editing, altering, and general all-round improvement of images 'in situ', with the added benefit of being able to upload any images to be shared on social media sites immediately.
This selection of Apps is by no means absolute – but it offers an interesting selection of some of the best and most innovative apps out there – some like “Coloursplash” offering simple ways to beautify images, others like “Groupshot” offering valuable new tools that seem like magic in the seamlessness of the software's auto-editing. Whatever your opinion of the outcome – the reality is that for a huge proportion of modern people, the camera and the telephone have now merged into one device – these apps could help you make the most of that.
Incredibooth is in the “trick” category because it is purely designed for amusement among friends. It works just the same as a real-life photo booth – taking 4 separate shots in rapid sequence – allowing you (and your friends), to pull a variety of faces in the time-honoured way.
The end result will be a digital version of a photobooth-style strip of 4 photos. You are still able to save the photos individually should you want to. There are also 4 filters you can use on the finished image, that have been supplied by Hipstamatic. Additional filters cost $0.99 (£0.69)
Groupshot solves the age-old problem of taking photos of a large group of friends at once – someone always seems to ruin the picture by pulling a face or blinking – or even just by being in there!
Groupshot allows you to tackle this problem very easily. By simply scrolling through several versions of the same group shot you can choose the face of the person you want to replace – and then swap it with a face from a different picture. Groupshot will then stitch it into the picture to integrate it – leav
ing you with the perfect picture of your friends.
360 Panorama ($0.99/£0.69)
This inexpensive but very useful App can turn your iPhone or iPad into a full featured 360 degree panoramic camera. Simply by rotating your camera around you this app can stitch the images together in real-time. The iPhone's inbuilt gyroscope then allows you to interact with the picture by looking around it in full 360 degrees.
Every picture you take is also GPS tagged to the location, complete with a compass heading so you can re-view the panorama wherever you are at a later date. Naturally – images as cool as this are designed to be shared – so this App makes it easy to post the images to Facebook or twitter, where they can be viewed by all your friends and family
Colorsplash is an ingenious app that allows you to digitally alter your photos by converting them to black and white while leaving your chosen details in vivid colour to create a striking image.
The interface on the app is highly intuitive and responsive, with tutorials to explain all of the features. Essentially you can use your finger to either paint part of the image into black and white, or alternatively you can turn the image black and white and then restore the colour to certain sections using your finger and the zoom functions to work with pixel accuracy. This is an incredibly popular app that deserves its recent App Store “Hall of Fame” status.
Decim8 is one of the most innovative 'effects' apps out there. Deliberately eschewing the immense avalanche of filter-based apps that replicate old-fashioned film, Decim8 describes itself as “a digital tool for photographic destruction” – and it certainly fits this description!
It's safe to say that the effects found on this app are completely unique – allowing you to transform your images into chaotic works of art like no other app can. Instead of simply applying filters, Decim8 actually moves the pixels of your images – warping and distorting the picture into something that is always completely new – and often amazingly beautiful, or at least surprisingly amusing. If you're interested in creating images that stand out from everyone else’s filtered and homogenised shots then this app is definitely worth a look.
Written by Thomas Eagle