On Location: iPhone
I was in Portland last fall and I gave myself a challenge, I was in a Hilton Garden Inn in just a business park in Portland. It was during the fall though, so there were some colors around. So I gave myself a challenge, I'm like, I'm staying within a block of my hotel and I'm giving myself 30 minutes to walk around and just take pictures. So I thought it would be a neat little challenge, just to see like, when you force yourself to do it, what can you do? I'll just run through. Did a lot of depth of field stuff. And, no it wasn't and yes I did. (audience laughing) No the leaf wasn't really there, and yes I did put it there. Shadows, I don't know, I saw the shadows, the sun was fairly low on the ground, or toward the horizon. I like that one. I played a lot with this bench that was there. It had little drops of water, I played with depth of field on it. You know, like focusing on the bench, and then focusing, like that one I'm focused on the bench, that one I'm focused behind it, so wha...
tever, you know, kinda goes blurry. Patterns, shape. I love when there's a lot of color, just kinda mixed all together, you know. Blue and the reds and the yellows. Kinda played with this leaf for a few shots. I like the light that was hitting it. So that was my little challenge to myself, was to walk around, gave myself 30 minutes, one block of the hotel, and I just gotta shoot and make something out of what's there. So I was pretty happy with it. You know what the coolest part about it was? It was all done with that. It was all done with my phone. Pretty cool. Look at some, I mean, you got depth of field, you got color. You know, really kinda (sighs) when you think about using your phone, I kinda say that in the video, as a real camera, it changes it for you. Like I'm thinking okay, I gotta make something out of this, this isn't just ah, selfie, click. It's like I need to make something out of it. So it was a good experiment, cool part about it is, is I have Lightroom Mobile on my phone. I imported the photos into there, they automatically appeared on my desktop. I process them all in Lightroom, like here's, I mean, I wonder if there's, that's before, that's after. So I processed them all in Lightroom, as soon as I process them, they're back on the phone. So it's pretty neat, it's a nice little work flow. All right, that said, I think now we can jump over into (laughing) our iPhone video. Now we're gonna take a look at the iPhone, basically mobile photography, whatever phone you've got, this is a killer camera inside of this thing. And the question I get a lot is, when is this gonna be good or as good as that? I think in some ways it already is. So here's what I would say, if we're gonna walk up to this shot, all right, and I'm just gonna stand back here, wide-angle, bang. If I'm just gonna do that, this'll do just fine. So, in fact, I think it'll be a neat exercise, I actually don't know how it's gonna turn out, but it'll be worth it to take the same shot, with that and to go back and compare them. You know, we can actually take them on the computer, and see what it's gonna look like. But if you're just gonna do that, if you're just gonna stand back, wide angle lens, not really get down, not get much foreground, not do much focusing, this is gonna really compare to that and they'll print extremely well. So when's it not gonna compare to that? Mostly, when we gotta zoom, when we're gonna start playing with depth of field. So here's some of the limitations of the iPhone. As good as it is for wide angle stuff, we can't zoom with it, so if you need to zoom in, it's really gonna start to fall apart, and then, the other thing is gonna be, if I wanna start to use depth of field, if I wanted to get down low and maybe bring a rock into the foreground, and then have other things into the background, but maybe just focus on that rock, I'm not gonna get that depth of field than if I went down to a wider or lower F-stop number on the camera here. So that's another example. Shooting portraits, you know, if I wanted to focus on the person, have the background go really blurry, again that's not really gonna work either. So that's a few limitations, but man guys, if you're not using this, you need to put this into your bag and you need to start using it. Here's the final tip I'll give you on using this for stills, and that is you need to start treating it like it's that camera. So they make little holders for these things. Get a little tripod holder. If you don't have a tripod holder put it on something, but get it sturdy. Use it like you would this, don't take it out and think, I'm just gonna take a snapshot, boom. Use it like you would a real camera. Compose with it, get down low, do things like you would do with a real camera. You can point, you can tell it where to focus, you can make it darker, you can make it brighter, but you gotta start thinking of it as a camera. The other thing is there's a time-lapse feature on this. So I used to carry around a whole separate body for time-lapse, you probably do the same thing, I mean photographers have multiple bodies, they'll have one shooting a time-lapse, and then they'll have another one with their phone or another one with their regular camera. So I've got a tripod that I'll put this on, I'll put it into time-lapse mode, and I'll let it shoot a time-lapse, and then I'll just do my photography on my regular camera. Because, think about it, the size of a movie that this is gonna come out with, is about as big as you're ever gonna display it. I'm never gonna display a 42 megapixel size time-lapse on a screen, so there's no reason to capture with that. This does a really good job and it's so much easier to capture it with. So got a couple examples we'll show you when we get back in the studio.
Sounds good, I, personally, am a little averse to the iPhone photography.
Are you really?
A little bit, I mean I got the older model, maybe that's what's doing it.
So you're the camera phone snob?
Maybe, but I wanna be a convert.
If I could be honest with you, about a year and a half ago I was too. I was up until my trip to Yosemite, where I started actually playing around with it, and I showed the class I was teaching, and everybody thought they were photos taken with that.
I became hooked on it at that point, so.
All right. I love the time-lapse idea. I think that's pretty cool.
Yeah man, you need to use it. There's a lot of cool things you can do with it.
All right, so phone, mobile photography, I think it is here to stay. You've heard it many times, it's the camera that's with us all the time. And I think it's definitely, here's my thoughts on this is it is gonna get better and better at a faster pace than anything in that bag. What else can they do to the DSLR and mirrorless? Bigger megapixels, more frames per second, more all of that stuff. This has a long way to go, but it can catch up to that a lot better. So I think it's gonna become a bigger part of our photography. So I'd encourage you guys to do it. I threw a couple of photos in here. I wanted to show you, what I did is I just played dumb when I was in my Yosemite class, and I just started showing people some photos. Just kind of running through some Yosemite shots. And then as I ran through them all, I told them it was with the iPhone. Especially stuff like this. Here let's go back, I think my first one was my favorite one. Especially something like that, I just did pano mode, just across. But guys, look. Look at the detail. Like its a sharp photo. There's a lot of stuff you could do with it. Incidentally, I did this photo, so I couldn't get the vertical shot that way, so you know what I did is, I turned it this way, I put it into pano mode and just went up, and got it that way. So I actually used the pano mode to take that shot. So just for giggles let's look, so I have overlaid, and don't think camera A or B, you don't know what camera A or B is. Maybe camera A is the iPhone, maybe it's not, maybe I faked you out, whatever. So what I did is I overlaid best that I could. Because we're talking different focal lengths and stuff like that. I overlaid the best I could with basically the same processed photo. No sharpening added, no nothin' added to it. The iPhone shot and the shot taken from the A7R2, and I just scaled it down. So then you're thinking, all right, we're all pixel peepers, right. So we wanna zoom in. So we'll zoom in. Take a look over on this side. All right, so let's go. What's your guess? So here, lets take a look at them, this is your choice, A or B. Which one is the iPhone?
I think A is iPhone.
So you think that's iPhone, you think that's Sony?
Okay. Anybody else think different?
Actually, I think it's different, I think the opposite.
All right so here, we're gonna take it, so what do we got? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, we have 10 people. So, show of hands, who thinks that's iPhone? Audience out there on the web, raise your hand, too. Show of hands, we think that's iPhone. We got four people, and so the other six think that's iPhone. So that is iPhone. That's Sony.
It looks horrible.
Yeah, the distortion of the--
that's what I figured.
But, I mean look, it's not like this night and day difference, where we're like, wow. Now again, this falls apart for many, many things, but like I said, for a shot like that, we get ourselves. You know we were just talking about Yosemite at lunch, and we go to Tunnel View, one of the most popular spots in Yosemite, and everybody's standing there with their lenses on, and this and that, and it's like, you know what? Boom. I could be done. So I don't know that I'm gonna get a better shot with that camera there. Yeah?
So if you want to basically, put a lot of details from this picture, I'm hoping the Sony will be much better, right?
That's the other thing, that's exactly it. That iPhone shot will fall apart pretty quick. In fact, when you saw some of the stuff I had here in Lightroom, here's one where there's a lot of shadow detail in it. And if I go try to pull it out, I can't go too far. I'm trying to find something with some, there you go. So there's some highlight detail, see I can't, on my Sony, my Sony would do that in it's sleep, you know. So yeah, that's where you're gonna fall apart too. It doesn't have the range that your DSLR's have. Let me show you the time-lapse. So I do this, what I've been doing is, You can buy little iPhone, Amazon Prime, it'll be here tomorrow, Amazon Prime, do a search for iPhone tripod, you'll find a hundred of them and they're all good. And they're like 10 or 15 bucks. But I set my Camera up on, I had my other tripod, and I just set the iPhone tripod up on it, and I set it in the back during this photo shoot, we were off to the left shooting, but. And watch this sunset guys, this sunset was amazing. We almost didn't go out shooting this night. Here's where it starts getting good. Oh! Get out of the way! (laughing)
Isn't that neat? So, but seriously. Like look at that. We almost didn't go out. There's a restaurant that we stopped at, started having dinner, cause this was in the summer, this was in June so sunset wasn't until like 8:40. So we stopped at it for dinner, we started having some drinks, it was gray outside and this was right around the corner, and I'm like, let's just go look, it's close enough that we can come back here and finish, and have more drinks if we need to. And we went around the corner and I mean, the sky just blew up, it was crazy. Jim has something to say.
We got some questions from the internet, 'cause we're doing great on time today. And then we can wrap up Marshall beach, and then we'll take a break and come back for our fourth segment. some great questions here, Shark would like to know, can you give us an idea how large of a print you would make from your iPhone plus camera? If you were to make a print.
I would have no qualms about at least going to 16 x 20, easily.
Great, cool. And then, surprise, photo maker would like to know, do you ever use mini lenses on the mobile phone for attachment for wide angle or telephoto?
I have, I have used the little mini lenses, the little olloclips and stuff like that. The problem is, I never have them when I need them. That's my only problem with it, I don't carry them with me day to day, and that's usually when I need it.
Yeah, cool. And then Clinton Web would like to know, how were you getting the depth of field from an iPhone, was that in the post processing?
Uh no, the depth of field in the iPhone was, when you, I don't know if they can pull this up but, when you, if you tap, you can tell it where to focus. So just by tapping, you'll see that little yellow box pop up there. So there's now some depth of field here, but if I tap I can tell it where to focus and I can drag it up and down, and I can make it brighter and I can make it darker.
Cool, sounds great, and then another one of our students would like to know, were you just using the regular camera app, or do you use other types of camera apps on your iPhone?
The regular camera app.
Great. Okay, that's good.
The other thing about the focus too is, it's not your DSLR camera, you get the depth of field, you gotta be pretty close to something. You know, like on my DSLR I can stand back a little bit and get a lot of it, like, if that's that little leaf that was on the bench, I'm like right up against it to get that kind of depth of field with it.
Perfect, thank you Matt.