Apps Uncovered 31 October 2014 – Tintypes/Monotones

(Selected by Bob Weil)

This week’s Apps Uncovered takes tintypes, black & white images and monotones/sepia tones as its theme. With some of the new film types in oggl and Hipstamatic, and the recent interest in older photographic methods, these seem all the rage now. But these images go beyond using old formats in predictable ways, and add powerful subjects, social commentary or scenes that simply leverage the virtues of the chosen format. The wide variety of imagery posted this week makes for a full-bodied collection of top-notch images, across the spectrum of genres. Armineh Hovnanesian’s amazing selfie is the lead image for this week’s selection – who can look at that face and not be captivated?

The first image by Armineh Hovanesian suggests something I’ve long suspected – that a selfied can represent a type of catharsis for the photographer/subject, or a way to work through questions or come to terms with frames of mind. Other monochromatic masterpieces this week came from Cattis C., Jack Webb, Vanessa Vox, Eloise Capet, Angie Johnson, Adam Oczkoś, Montse Abad, Gianluca Ricoveri, Jennifer Bracewell, juta jazz, Susan Blase, hanakai2001, Jerzy Jachym and Em Kachouro.

If you’d like to see your images in the running for selection to our weekly Apps Uncovered feature, be sure to list the apps you used to create your image when you upload it to the iPhoneographyCentral Flickr group. (And as an added bonus to other members who would love to learn from your successes, consider adding the “Backstory” describing the creative process that led you to capture and process the image as you did.


In the land of gods & monsters, I was an angel – Lana Del Rey by Armineh Hovanesian

Apps used: Prior to using Hipstamatic, I used the LemeCam app as well as the native iPhone camera and then used the editing powers of Snapseed, PhotoWizard and at times Glaze. When Hipstamatic came along the shots and the outcomes changed. Oggl fine-tuned my process and now TinType is on top of my list and my go to app for Selfies.

Backstory: I happened to be in a very particular mood that day and was listening to Lana Del Rey. I had just gotten the TinType app, I was experimenting different shots and angles. Then the song Gods and Monsters popped into my head and I thought how would I represent this song in a photo? After a few outtakes, I finally got the result I was aiming for.
I was asked by Bob to share my creative journey with selfies. I have been given the title, Selfie Queen, by some! To me, Selfies tell a story and they are sort of the equivalent of keeping a journal. The tale may be happy, sad, infuriated, lonely, disturbed, confused, chaotic, joyful, gloomy and the list can go on and on.

Selfies are also very liberatingly soothing for me just like seeing a therapist! They help me tap into what may be going on within and help me “see” what I may not or choose not to notice. My Selfies are sometimes the healing process needed to go forward and help me to be bold. They are the rules I tend to break as I travel on this road called life.


Thank U by Cattis C

Apps Used: Taken with iPhone 4s. Apps used: T-Camera, Hipstamatic camera, Superimpose, RePix, PhotoToaster and Modern Grunge.

Backstory: This is on of my conceptual edits pieces, influenced by the song “Thank U” by Alanis Morissette. I hadn’t heard it for years and happened to hear it recently. The lyrics suddenly got a new message. Like a wake up call that I could connect with my own life, I mean really embrace and understand on a deeper level.
I wanted to embody the passage “Thank you terror Thank you disillusionment Thank you frailty Thank you consequence”.

Why thank terror, disillusionment and consequence? -because they all taught me how to be a better person and without them I’d probably be six feet under by now!
To me it’s a humble thank-you. It’s the noble acceptance of a beaten warrior. But it’s also a feel of fragility and I wanted to the pose to transmit all those aspects why you can see a slight motion blur to manifest the vulnerability of life.
Being a former actress I have no problem using myself as subject and I don’t look on myself as anything but a tool, why I choose to be both model and photographer. I’m also the only one that knows exactly what I’m looking for!


The Bend by Jack Webb

Apps Used: To achieve this shot, I used Hipstamatic with the Diego lens and Uchitel 20 film, a favorite of mine. This combo offers a muting of details, adding to the melancholia and moodiness of the scene. It also provides a timeless and ageless quality to the image reminiscent of the pictorialists of more than a century ago.

Backstory: This photo was taken in Hayden Valley, along the Yellowstone River in the national park. This is immediately after sunrise on a dreary, overcast morning. I continue to return to this location when I visit the park because of the possibilities presented. Through the years at the bend and the meadow behind me, I have captured a wolf feeding on an elk’s ribcage, a grizzly, many sunrises through the trees, and the usual assortment of bison. The spot is a photographer’s treasure if you have the patience to wait for the opportunities.


Don Juan? by Vanessa Vox

Apps Used: ProCamera, Photo Toaster, Glaze, Image Blender, Snapseed

Backstory: What’s happening when a man comes through the window? What is he doing? Was the door locked? Is somebody inside who needs help? Or is he the long-awaited lover, the most attractive man of the village?

The true story is less romantic. In point of fact the old stone house needs renovation. When I took the photo it was completely hollow. Only the beams remained. The craftsmen went in and out to build up the floors.

When I’ve shot and processed the picture I’ve tried to focus on the facade. There is no street to be seen. No disturbing detail. The vignette is like the spot of my eyes. The fading light on the top enhances the effect of the high wall.

Out of its real context a single image always suggests a story. And in my fantasy this old house became a symbol of a mystery which is hidden behind its old stone walls. And only this man on the ladder is on the way to reveal it.

Eloise_Capet_002_My melancholy

My love is your land by Eloise Capet

Apps Used and Backstory: I like to tickle minds by creating mysterious pictures. My stylized compositions are recognizable in the poetic sceneries and in the whimsical faceless self-portraits that I capture. I stage visual narratives that tell stories. To express my ideas and my creativity, to keep the creative juices flowing, I construct images that I conceive a long time before shooting. And my editing process uses a small selection of apps.

Cameramatic is my main shooting app because it allows me to select the black and white filter that I need. When you get into the interface, you can choose among a wide range of options – mine is B&W High Contrast. I like it very much since it allows me to stress the dramatic effect of my photographs.

Then I use Snapseed to better control, frame and adjust my images. I start a general editing process by using specific functions: I crop the size of my picture, I modify the tune image to stress or reduce the brightness. It is also great to balance the contrasts since the masses are highly significant in black and white photography compositions. I also overhaul the warmth, which is an important step in my editing process as well because at that stage, my creations may take one direction or another. Either I decline a range of greys or I experiment ranges of sepia colours. Sometimes I add a few more slight effects – like blurred ones – to accentuate the mystery, the charm and the wondering.

The last step consists of transforming and altering the pictures to translate my emotions. As I explore and experiment a vintage style, I mainly use ScratchCam – my favorite one – but also Mextures, Grunge and DistressedFX. I like blending multiple layers of textures to produce melancholic and poetic moods. I also mix scratches to create more dramatic, grunge or dark ambiances.

I am the model in this picture. It is a self-portrait which illustrates a poem of Sylvia Plath about love. Flowers epitomize this poetic idea of offering one’s most beautiful emotions to the lover. I needed to compose a grunge mood. I mainly used ScratchCam: the scratches effects enhanced the fragility of love.


No Means of Escape … no door, no birdcage, or fireplace by Angie Johnson

Apps used: TimerCamera, FocalLab, Mextures, and Image Blender

Backstory: I find inspiration for iphoneography in all sorts of people, places, and situations. A friend of mine is going through some difficult work-related emotions. Having her on my mind while walking through the kitchen one evening, I noticed my daughter’s umbrella. “That’s an idea,” I thought. Gathering the trusty white sheet (for the backdrop), iPhone, and the umbrella, I scurry to the basement for the shot. The intention is to use the umbrella as a means of protection, because there is no means of escape. No door, no birdcage, or sizable fireplace will save my friend from her work dilemma.

As I provide this backstory for such a simple yet so meaning-filled image, I’m smiling. Those of us intoxicated with photography and storytelling via imagery, completely understand. In all these words, what I am trying to say is that iPhoneography offers an imaginative outlet for emotional expression. That in and of itself is a delight.


Tunnel by Adam Oczkoś

Apps used: I shot with the native camera app iPhone 5s and used Snapseed and VSCOcam (b1 preset).

Backstory: I took this photo during the photowalk in Poznań 2 weeks ago. It was shoot in one of the underpass. The person on the picture is one of my collegues from Polish mobile photo enthusiasts group “Mobilni” (www.grupamobilni.pl/en).

Mirada // Gaze  Iphone 5, TinType, Snapseed

Mirada // Gaze by Montse Abad

Apps used: Iphone 5, TinType, Snapseed

Backstory: This is a photo of my more younger grandson, Biel. He was a little sick that day and more serious than usual, but interested in what was happening around. I liked his eyes intently following the flight of a fly and take photo with my iohone 5 with the ProCamera app. After I imported the photo in tintype and applied the black and white filter, lower the intensity of the silver salts and deleted the frame. In Snapseed I adjusted the frame with crop, down the brightness a bit with tune image and gave more contrast in the eyes with the selective adjust.

To do-99

To do-99 by Gianluca Ricoveri

Apps used: Hipstamatic with the combo John / D-Type Plate alzate with Blue Cadet (no other apps used)

Backstory: I took this photo in a cornfield near my house in a September afternoon, the sky is the light were gorgeous. I’d taken photos with different apps, this is one of my favorites


One by Jennifer Bracewell

Apps used: I snapped his photo using Hipstamatic oggl. I blurred out the background with Big Lens and used Repix to add some texture, LensLight for the little light leak, and Mextures for a final filter.

Backstory: I was picking my daughter up from school and noticed this little boy standing next to a tree.


Untitled by juta jazz

App used: alt photo

Backstory: I had an afternoon walk with my family in old town of Nicosia. Suddenly the old house caught my attention. I went forward to see it. Unfortunately I couldn’t enter the house. It was in the green line – it was prohibited to enter. I reached the window just to look inside and I saw this beautiful demolished room with the stairs full of light. I captured the moment – the moment of today- the moment of yesterday – memories, lives and hopes passed away from there. I just felt so strongly again the reality- we still live in divided capitals, we still live in divided countries, we still live with divided minds….


Us by Susan Blase

Apps used: Hipstamatic/Oggl and Pixlromatic on iPhone

Backstory: This was a feather I found on a stroll. It was so pretty I decided to keep in my purse and snap. The background is the interior of my VW Beetle, and most of the tiny white specks are from dust in the natural light. I shot in Hipstamatoc/Oggl and loved the way the Salvador/Tin Type effect looked, so I kept that combo. Most of the work nature and Oggl did. I only slightly tweaked in Pixlromaroc to add a slight tint.

I named it as I did because I saw two souls that were floating in this world and complimented each other. I also hold feathers close to my heart and they are personally symbolic to me. So, even though it’s a fairly simple work as opposed to many of my photos, this one represents to me something very dear.


Untitled by hanakai2001

Apps used: Hipstamatic, Faded, Mextures and PixlrExpress

Backstory: I took this from the bridge. I know every weekend this man is playing a trumpet here. the time was before 3 p.m. I aimed him from slanting angle. at that moment a bicycle man come here. I was so lucky!


Darkness by Jerzy Jachym

Apps used: Taken in my iPhone 5s. Recently, I often use MPro By Toshihiko Tambo. It’s great. Edited the contrast, brightness done using Filterstorm Neue.

Composition Manunatu I

Composition Manunatu I by Em Kachouro

Apps used: Snapseed and VintageHD on the iPad


Skipping the Distance: iPhone 6 Version by Martin Dietrich

Apps used: (Processed with VSCOcam with f3 preset

Bob Weil

Bob is the co-author of The Art of iPhone Photography (with Nicki Fitz-Gerald), published by Rocky Nook photography books and supports Nicki in managing iPhoneography Central and the associated Flickr group.


  1. Angie Johnson said:

    Oh, wow! I’m very happy to be in Apps Uncovered this week. It’s an honor to be among such a talented group of folks. Thanks so much, Bob! We are able to create these storytelling images because of the artful instruction you are providing. Congratulations to all and, again, thanks!

  2. jutajazz said:

    Deeply appreciated for inclusion of my work dear Bob! Huge honor being here! Big congrats to all amazing artists – so unique and wonderful works!

  3. Cattis C said:

    Lovely selektions and great theme!!!
    Tank you so much for including one of imgages and BIG congrats to you all! Fantastisk work and rally intresting reading!

  4. Gianluca Ricoveri said:

    Great selection !! Thank you Bob for including my picture ! Congrats to all!!

  5. Suzy said:

    What a lovely collection. Honored to be among such stunning work. I’m loving the new TinType app 🙂 thanks Bob for curating such an interesting group, very cool. Congrats to my fellow artists.

  6. Armineh said:

    I’m still pinching myself! Thank you, as ever for giving me this opportunity. I’m beyond thrilled to be featured. Many congrats to every one.

  7. Montse Abad said:

    Thank you very much for include my photo in this gorgeous selection. I’m fell very honoured. Congrats to evreybody!!!

  8. Tuba Korhan said:

    Wonderful showcase! Congratulations to all my talented friends.