“The best camera is the one you have with you.”
I’d like to attribute that quote to the source but it has been so widely heralded, I can’t name the genius who first uttered it. Though it was years into photography before I remember hearing this tidbit of wisdom, I have to admit that when I picked up my first DLSR in early 2009, I didn’t heed it. After all, I’d just paid for this expensive, higher end camera…and I lugged it everywhere. It helped that back in those early days, I was also lugging around diaper bags and strollers so the added weight didn’t seem like too big of a deal.
But, as my kids got older and my bag got smaller, my iPhone became my go-to camera. It was always with me and while I strive to take professional quality pictures, the root of that desire is that I love photographs and I wanted those memories preserved, regardless of the format. And if I didn’t have to lug around heavy gear to get it, all the better.
Even though I now have a mirrorless camera and I’m not dealing with having to lug around a heavy DSLR, my iPhone images are a much truer representation of my life these days than those shot with my pro gear. Part of it is convenience but a larger part is simply that my kids are much more relaxed with me pulling out my iPhone to snap a picture than Sebastian (yes, I named my camera…) In fact, it’s a rare day indeed when I take a “professional” shot of my family.
However, I still want my smartphone images to be consistent with the rest of what I shoot (both digital and film). Did you know that you can use your Pretty Presets to edit your smartphone images? You can do this through Lightroom’s mobile app but I just load them into the desktop version. There are a few things you need to know to get the most out of enhancing your smartphone images with Pretty Presets.
1. Start with a sharp image.
Your smartphone may not have optical image stabilization so a steady hand is really important, especially if zooming in.
2. The front and rear cameras are not created equal.
This will likely only come into play if taking a selfie (which I take a lot of with my children) as images from that camera are a lower resolution and tend to suffer in sharpness and noise.
3. When editing your smartphone images, apply your presets just like you normally would.
You can make all the same adjustments, but keep in mind that if you’re used to working with RAW files, your smartphone’s jpeg images may respond slightly differently to the presets.
Smartphone cameras have come a long way. Not only do we now have large, high resolution images to work with, the newest smartphones are even diving into depth of field and portrait lighting adjustments. That’s pretty amazing. Mobile phones stopped being just phones a long time ago.
Here are a few examples of how you can use your Pretty Presets to add some extra polish to your smartphone images. I’ll list the preset used under each image.
Edited with Sage from the Landscape Collection
Edited with Calypso from the Pretty Film Bohemian Collection
Edited with Harvest Moon from the Sugar and Spice Collection
Edited with Classic Clean from the Bella Baby Complete Workflow
Edited with Sliver Mink BW from the Pretty Film Pastels Collection
Edited with Cassis from the Pretty Film Bohemian Collection
Edited with Moonbeam BW from the Pretty Film Bohemian Collection