#photoaday with an iPhone4 … My rules explained

By Steve Outing

(NOTE: I posted this at my Posterous blog, which I use exclusively for photos and for my iPhone Photo-a-Day project. Reposting here as few people have yet to discover http://steveouting.posterous.com!)

So, I’ve made it 15 days straight so far with posting (to my Posterous photo blog) a photograph a day, using only my iPhone4 and its built-in camera. As I’ve gone forward with this little side project, I’ve made some decisions about self-imposed “rules” for my daily photos:

  • I will only post photos taken with my phone; no “real” cameras. (This presumes that I don’t lose my phone during the year, and that it doesn’t stop working and require an overnight visit to Apple for repairs! In that case, I’ll switch to my point-and-shoot camera temporarily.)
  • I can use any number of iPhone photography and image-manipulation apps.
  • Photos will be posted to Posterous from the iPhone and never will their pixels land on my Macbook laptop or any other device before landing on my Posterous blog.

Why am I doing this? Well, I remember giving a talk quite a few years ago to a group of journalism educators and touting the idea that the fledgling, low-quality cameras showing up on mobile phones at the time would, soon enough, become ubiquitous and that the phone-cameras’ quality would improve to be useful as journalistic tools. In those days, I was met with some incredulous looks.

But in 2011, we’re there. The iPhone4 that I carry does not have the best-quality camera among the smartphones on the market, but it’s decent. So I hope to prove that you can produce pretty-good photos with a phone-camera, aided by a number of photography apps that make manipulation and enhancement of photos possible and downright easy on the phone itself. So far, I’ve used these apps:

  • Camera+
  • ColorSplash
  • ToonCamera
  • PS Express

And I just purchased SlowShutter and am looking forward to experimenting with blurred-motion effects.

It’s been a worthwhile experiment. At the least, it’s reignited a long-ago interest in and passion for photography. And when I go about my daily activities, I now observe what’s around me looking for photo opportunities — dispensing with my too-often former obliviousness to my surroundings.

Author: Steve Outing Steve Outing is a Boulder, Colorado-based media futurist, digital-news innovator, consultant, journalist, and educator. ... Need assistance with media-company future strategy? Get in touch with Steve!