Selected by Diana Nicholette Jeon
Welcome to this week’s Apps Uncovered, where we feature a range of iPhoneography talent and reveal the creativity and techniques behind each of the iPhone images featured.
It’s challenging to look through the images submitted here weekly and pick just a few, since there are often many good ones that get left behind. I tend to start looking early, get a pulse on what is happening, and then develop an idea to work with based upon what is available to me in my pre-determined time window. This week, I went with “Point of View.”
Dictionary.com defines it as: Point of View (noun)
- A specified or stated manner of consideration or appraisal; standpoint. From the point of view of a doctor.
- An opinion, attitude, or judgment. He refuses to change his point of view in the matter.
- The position of the narrator in relation to the story, as indicated by the narrator’s outlook from which the events are depicted and by the attitude toward the characters.
Like opinions, we all have one. Yet despite this, sometimes it is challenging to find photographers/artists who directly use POV as a conceit in their work.
David Ulrich, a photographer, educator, and author of Zen Camera: Creative Awakening with a Daily Practice in Photography discussed POV in his book, in terms of photographic composition choices; he writes: “I prefer Minor White’s argument that composition is merely the ‘strongest way of seeing.’ The point of view inherent in the frame has definite psychological implications. A low camera angle, often used to photograph politicians and celebrities, gives the subject a heroic, larger-than-life presence in the frame—whether they deserve it or not. A high camera angle, looking down, tends to diminish the subject and can convey an attitude of alpha power on the part of the observer. A wide-angle lens distorts the subject, especially noticeable in straight lines and human forms. Portrait photographers typically use a slightly longer lens to flatten any apparent distortion of human features. Look at all the selfies around today. Cell phone camera lenses are on the wider side and definitely distort features.” All of these are helpful to think about about when we pick up that camera to frame a shot. What are we trying to say, and what is the strongest way of seeing it/showing it to others, as well?
All the images I selected here all have a noticeable POV in how the camera was used. Some, like Cathrine Halsör’s, or in Afra by Shel Serkin, are subtle–a slight shift making something slightly heightened. Others, like Alon’s Goldsmith’s, use the POV to make us look more deeply and closely to really get what is happening. Additionally, many of the artists have used post-processing techniques to enhance what they were trying to say, contributing further to their individual POVs. All are different, but each artist here has added a little something that is just their own. I led with Alon Goldsmith’s image because the combination of saturated color, proportion, human gesture, and flattening of background wall and sky into one made for an image that was totally eye catching.
Off topic, I also want to add that as much as I have enjoyed curating for this column the past few weeks, this, my third column, will be my final one. Recently my personal situation has changed and I need to focus my time on things at home. So mahalo nui loa to those who read my musings, and those who allowed me to use their images all three times I worked on this column. Your works are inspiring.
Thank you to today’s featured artists for allowing us to show your work and enlighten our readers with how and why you created the images you did.
Note: If you’d like your images to be considered for use in our weekly Apps Uncovered feature, upload them to our Flickr group and then be sure to list the apps you used to create your image. Consider adding the “backstory” describing your creative process, and be sure your photo is configured to allow Sharing/Embedding within Flickr. (Unfortunately, it seems the experiment that I tried for this week with also adding Instagram did not work out very well…so I am back to looking for images strictly from Flickr. Perhaps I will try again in the future, when I figure out how to solve the rash of new problems it brought.)
Alon Goldsmith – And Beyond
Apps Used: Image taken with iPhone 8 Plus using the Hipstamatic app. (Lens: Antoni, Film: Robusta)
Backstory: Graffiti Artists are encouraged to use the ruins of the former Pavilion in Venice beach, California as a canvas for their temporary musings. The Art Walls, as they are known, are a focal point for thousands of wide-eyed visitors who venture west on any given weekend. I ride there regularly, confident in the knowledge that a decisive moment can unfold at any time. On this occasion, I was leading a photo walk with work colleagues when I spied a girl standing on top of one of the walls. I moved rapidly toward the scene and managed to squeeze off three or four shots as she leapt in the air. I find it interesting that shooting from behind the jumper seems to trick the eye and create the illusion of flight.
Shel Serkin – 11:30 pm “Alice”
Apps Used: This image was shot with the iPhone X native camera app and edited in hipstamatic and snapseed (my two faves).
Backstory: It was taken during this year’s 24 hour project, an annual international street photography event. This year, over 4000 photographers from around the world shot for 24 hours straight, midnight to midnight on April 7th, and posted one photo an hour. This was my fifth year participating – I love the challenge of discovering a photo every hour, and the unrelenting fun, pressure and fatigue! More information can be found at 24hourproject.org.
Cathrine Halsør – I wish fairytales didn’t
Apps Used: Photo was taken with the native camera of an iPhone 6s plus and edited in Snapseed, iColorama, Formulas and Stackables.
Backstory: This picture is shot while hiking in my childhood forest, where I now live with my sweetheart and one of my dear daughters. It’s a fairytale forest and a nature reserve at the southern part of Jeløya, Moss, in Norway. This unique nature reserve covers around 60 decar and it’s just outside my front door. It’s one of my favorite places to wander; the old trees, the stones and the moss gives a feeling of fairytales and hidden stories.
I wanted to amplify that in my editing. I’ve chosen these words to go with the image:
’I wish fairytales
didn’t started with
Once upon a time.
They should start like this:
It is time.
Or even better:
There will be a time ’
~Lars Saabye Christensen
Poetic Medium – Doll-12635
Apps Used: KitCam(GhostBird), Snapseed
Backstory: a friend is downsizing and a bag of her daughter’s dolls headed for Goodwill caught my eye. Had to have them. Had to shoot them.
Sharon Wilkerson – Tulip
Apps Used: I purchased the blips lens system for my iPhone 6 after seeing it on Instagram and the app that goes with the blips is SMO. I took the shot on an iPhone 6S, blips macro plus lens in SMO app and no other processing was done.
Backstory: I bought the tulips knowing that here in Ontario Canada we were expecting about two days of freezing rain and knowing I would end up in the house wondering what could I photograph. I thought the tulips would not only make it feel like spring when mother nature was bringing us winter weather but they could somehow make me feel less blah about being stuck in the house due to messy road conditions.
Armineh Hovanesian – Shelter from the sun 98/365
Apps Used: iPhone 7 Plus, Hipstamatic app
Backstory: It was a brutally hot day, 90 degrees to be exact, as I stepped down to our subterranean parking getting ready to leave, I noticed the sun light cracking through the staircase and its reflection in the puddle. I could not resist.
Vanessa Vox – Destruction
Apps Used: Shot with the device cam of an iPhone SE and edited on an iPad 4 using iColorama.
Backstory: My photo called ‘Destruction’ is not meant to be a glorification of decay. The shards and fragments of the leaded window are rather witnesses of a stupid act of boredom, unmotivated aggression and disrespect.
The small chapel was built around 1900 by Jean-Pierre Léopold Urdy, a country doctor and former mayor of Saint-Pantaléon-les-Vignes (France). He was a passionate man who tried to make his environment a better and more beautiful place by implementing various architectural projects. The tiny neo-medieval chapel is a surprising discovery after a long walk through the woods up to the top of a hill. But my initial enthusiasm was sadly clouded while looking at the broken, grafitti’d windows.
Apps Used: I used Snapseed to crop and increase the contrast.
Backstory: This was shot at the Tokyo metropolitan government building in Tokyo. Its an amazing piece of architecture designed by Kenzō Tange. It’s one of my favorite places to shoot as it has these huge columns which create great lines of shadow and light. For this image I composed the picture first and then waited for the right human element to enter the frame.
Kate Zari Roberts – High Desert Breakdown
Apps Used: Hipstamatic
Backstory: This photo was taken in New Mexico near the Earthship Biotecture community. I photographed and edited the truck in Hipstamatic using Stavros, Robusta and Juicy Orange Gel to try and capture the feel of the high desert.
Shel Serkin – 11:20 AM “Afra”
Apps Used: This photo was taken with the iPhoneX native camera and processed with Hipstamatic and Snapseed. It was also taken during this year’s 24 hour project – 24hourproject.org
Backstory: I had been shooting these two women from various angles by the time I took this photo. They had caught on immediately before I snapped it – the woman on the right is telling the other that I am taking their photo, resulting in this great eye contact.