iPhoneography | Camera+ Tutorial and find out how to win a $5 Starbucks gift card!

Let me start by saying that I think it is so important to document your daily life!  Capturing the little things like eating breakfast, playing with your kids, chores, just how you spend time together.  It doesn’t have to be a special occassion for you take photos of your family.  It’s so easy to do now with the point and shoot cameras or even your cell phone.  I have an iPhone4S, but you can shoot with whatever type of camera that you have to capture these every day moments.  Every once in awhile it’s fun to just play around with your camera and create a little art too!

For camera phone shooters using the iPhone:

Camera+ $0.99











Sharing my favorite camera replacement app with you today!  It’s camera+.

I use camera+ over the native camera that comes on the iPhone when I want to be able to adjust my exposure for the photo when I am taking it.  It’s very easy to do!

This is a piece of art that hangs on my living room wall.  There is good light in the room which is great for taking photos.


wall art

Open up the Camera+ app and click on the little camera icon to take a photo.  You can set your focus by tapping on your iPhone screen.  Then a box will pop up with a plus sign.

If you tap on that plus sign a circle will pop up.  Drag that circle to different areas on screen and it will automatically adjust your exposure.  You can get a brighter or darker photo by doing this.  Awesome way to get to better looking photos!

My picture looks okay, but using the camera+ app I can also edit this photo and make some artistic enhancements to really make it pop.  Tap on the little box in the bottom left hand corner of your screen.  You can see mine in the photo above.  I has a number 70 on it.  That will take you to the lightbox.  I just happen to have 70 photos in mine 🙂  When you open up the photo in lightbox you will see some options for what to do with your photo.  Click on edit.

Once you click the edit button, it brings you to a screen where you can begin editing your photo.  Under the picture there are two bars.  The botttom bar is the category and the top bar has the options for that category.  You can see that the bottom bar defaults to Scenes.  This is a great place to start.  You can click on each of the 17 options to see how the changes affect your photos.

For pictures without people, I like to start by clicking on clarity.  You can see it brightened my photo and added a pop of contrast and color.  Everything just seems to stand out a little better.  This option can be a little too harsh for some photos, but it works great with this one.

Once happy with the selection click on Done in the upper right hand corner.  This brings you back to your lightbox screen.  Now for the most important part, Click on and HOLD the save button.  Do not just click on the button.  If  you do it will just save the photo to your library, but we are not done yet so by clicking and HOLDING the save button you will get another option menu to pop up.

This is the next option menu.  Click on Commit Edits.  This will save the edit that you just made to your photo so you can make more edits on top of that one (stacking edits).

Now that your edits are saved, you can click on edit and go make some more adjustments to your photo.

Here we are back at our editing screen.  Now I am going to make another edit from the Scenes category.  This time I selected Cloudy.

I am going to make a selection from a new category.  Because I am using a new category, I don’t have to commit the edit I just made.  This time I am using FX EFFECTS.  Once you click on that button you will see a new screen.  There are four more options now on the bar above to chose from!  Color, Special, Retro and I love Analog.  For each one of those options you will see a screen with 6 styles to choose from!

I am now using the SPECIAL menu and the OVERLAY option.  If you click on the INTENSITY button you will get a slider that pops up below the photo.  You can drag that to the left to lower the strength or the right to increase the strength.  Full strength was a little too much for this image so I lowered the intensity to about 35%.  Then click the DONE button in the upper right corner again to save my changes.

I am happy with the edits that I have made and I no longer wish to make any more edits so this time I will just click on the SAVE button without holding it in.

Now you can see that the photo will be saved to my camera roll in my photos folder on the iPhone.  Editing complete!  You can also chose to use the share button and save your photo on your favorite site.  I use the app Instagram for sharing my photos to Facebook and Twiiter.

Here’s the before and after of my photo just using the camera+ app!  What a great improvement and well worth the $0.99 that I paid for the app!!!  I would love to see your iPhone edits too.  Send your edited image to nicole@nicolemathison.com and I will give a $5 Starbucks gift card to the creator of my favorite image!  The subject can be anything you chose!  Winner will be selected next Thursday so you have plenty of time to practice 🙂

Fix It Friday | Edited by Nicole Mathison Photography

Today I am participating in Fix It Friday from I heart faces.  Every Friday they post an image for others to try their editing skills on.  This is the original photo taken by Dana Suggs Photography and used with her permisson.
This is my edit using Photoshop CS5 and some of my favorite Michelle Kane actions
So how did I achieve this look? 
  1. I bumped the levels and ran a curves adjustment to lighten the skin and bring out some of the blacks and darker tones in the picture.
  2. I cloned out the skin imperfections as well as a bit of the discoloration under the eyes, around the mouth and on the side of his face.
  3. I ran a vibrance boost layer to bring out the colors in his clothing as well as the background.
  4. I ran the color boost action from MK at 70% on softlight to further enhance the colors, while masking it from the skin and a little bit from the second chair where the color was too intense. 
  5. I dodged some areas of natural highlights on the skin, chairs and clothing.  I burned some of the background above his head, on the wall, below the chair and the scrap metal behind him to darken them up a bit. 
  6. I ran the mellow out action from MK at 60% on the face and arms to tone down the reddish/orange tones of his skin from the original photo.
  7. I ran a guassian blur layer at 29% to the skin to smooth it out just a bit while keeping a natural look.
  8. I did a slight hue/saturation boost to the irises of his eyes just to enhance the color, then ran a slight sharpening to them as well using the eye-citement action from MK.
  9. I ran the bland to brilliant action from MK to defog, add contrast and a midtone boost to the photo.
  10. I burned the edges of the photo to create a vignette and draw the eye in to his face.
  11. Finally I ran an overall sharpen to the photo.
Normally I do not run so many actions while editing my photos, but I recently purchased this set and thought the Fix It Friday photo would be the perfect time to try some of them out 🙂  They really speed up my workflow!  Note, I never just run an action.  They have fully adjustable layers with multiple options to customize each step of my editing process.  Just for fun, here is a black and white edit just adding the heirloom action from MK.