After I posted about the Poladroid app some people were asking about a Lomo version of the concept. My friend Erik Pettersson has released a set of photo processing apps for the iPhone which give your digital shots that vintage warmth. There’s a Vint Red, Green and B&W plugin, each treating the colors a bit differently. My favorite is the Green, it definitely gives you that low ISO Lomo feel complete with vignetting. More examples are available on Erik’s Flickr.You can download the Vint plugins from the iTunes store or on your iPhone, one is free, the other two are $1 each.
Erik also sent the photo below he says he found at his parent’s house and which was the inspiration for the plugins. Everything looked cooler in the 70’s in Sweden.
Poladroid is a new app that filters and effects your photos to make them look like, you guessed it, Polaroids. I would normally file something like this under gimmick and move on but I can’t help but appreciate the vignetting and color shift that the app lends to your digital photos, for an automatic filter it’s actually not that bad. Unfortunately it looks like you have to put up with the pretty fake looking border and drop shadow to get at that color shifting goodness, but it’s free so I can’t really complain. Check it out it at Poladroid’s site. All photos from Poladroid Flickr Group.
Sorry for the lack of posts this week (thanks Jakub for holding it down), I got back from Florida on monday and have been playing catch-up ever since. I flew Tampa -> Atlanta -> SFO so it was a rather grueling trip as I basically got there, played the show, then turned around and flew home. Thanks to everyone who came out to the show; it was great meeting you all and talking. I also want to apologize for the technical issues. I’m not quite sure what the cause was, but the power on stage was intermittently going out and dropping the sound system, luckily it only went out once during my particular set.
The visual highlight of the trip (aside from the sunset the night of the show which I didn’t have my camera around the catch) was the typography in the Tampa Airport. All of the signage was set in my personal favorite: Trade Gothic LT Std Bold Extended (and look at that logo!). Unfortunately, I dropped my D80 before the trip somewhat crippling it so I wasn’t able to get very good shots. I took a ton and most came out blurry or underexposed. Thankfully, Nikon has a great repair program (which I’ve used many times in the past) which is relatively cheap and quick. So I’ll just have to find a week or so when I can do without my camera and send it in. Or just upgrade…. But given that I just made another major upgrade (more on that tomorrow), I think I need to hold off a while longer on getting a new DLSR.
On a side note: A design student at the show gave me his card (the one with bears on it). I said I’d check the site but when I got home I couldn’t find the card anywhere. If you gave that to me, please drop me the link so I can check it.
I happened on this article a while back and its message has always stuck with me (although I still obsess over new camera gear). But even a self-confessed gear addict can admit there are some pretty interesting points in there. The article by Ken Rockwell details his theory that you can achieve the results you want with a $150 camera or a $5000 camera, it’s just about understanding and working with the equipment. I don’t agree with everything he has to say, but it’s a good read for anyone lusting after some of the new, and ridiculously expensive, DSLRs popping up. And if you need proof of Rockwell’s claim that “a great photographer can take great pictures with a disposable”, look no further than Flickr where a simple search will yield some really amazing shots, all taken with disposables. A couple of my favorites are here and here. Also worth a read is Rockwell’s “$150 Camera vs. $5000 Camera” article.
I guess at the end of the day you’re really just paying for features when you buy a high end camera body. Easy access to settings, quicker focus, faster shots: it all adds up to an easier to use camera that allows you to get the shots when they present themselves. I remember my old Nikon CP 8800 fondly, it took great photos, but it was a total pain to use and I can’t even count the number of great shots I missed waiting for that thing to focus or write to the memory card (it took forever to do both).
Anthony Kurtz is a San Francisco based photographer who’s work I just recently stumbled upon. The second I saw his essay on India by train I was hooked. Anthony’s images manage to tread lightly into the world of HDR without stepping over that razor thin line into the overdone, hypersaturated cheeziness that plagues so many other high dynamic range photographer’s work. I love his palette and sense of atmosphere, the images feel modern and nostalgic at the same time. The simplicity and practicality of digital photography has led me astray from film so it’s nice to see someone like Anthony making digital feel so warm and vibrant (I am assuming these are digital, they have that processed digital vibe, but they could very well be film). There’s plenty more to see at his portfolio.
True to form for the Megapixel Wars, Nikon is said to be upping the ante with the follow up to it’s flagship D3 12MP shooter. The new D3x will apparently sport a 24MP sensor along with various other upgrades. I had the chance to try a D3 out earlier this year in Bangkok; it really was an incredible machine and I can only imagine what this more powerful version might be like. While the price on the D3x puts it well outside the range of my shortlist for new DSLRs, it’s still nice to lust over something so truly state of the art. Via Gizmodo via Gadgetlab
FivePrime have a nice collection of Rolleiflex / TLR shots posted that really make me want to get back into film, medium format particularly. For the uninitiated, TLR stands for “twin lens reflex” and Rolleiflex has made some of the finest examples of these cameras over the years. For those with deep pockets, you can pick one up on the used market (and roll the dice) or score a new one for the tidy sum of $4500 (but then again, a Zeiss lens is included). Until digital can match the tone and range of shots like these, film will never die. Link