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Apps Uncovered – End of Year “Things We Can be Thankful For” Edition

[Selected by Bob Weil] This week’s Apps Uncovered leads off with a shot to commemorate the season – whether you call it Christmas, commemorate is as the winter holiday, or think of it simply as the solstice. Any way we look at this time of year, it’s often the moment when we remember what’s important to us, why life is wonderful, and consider our small part in something bigger than ourselves.

My selection this week (as we come to the end of 2013) is to take a look at some of things we can be grateful for. Your list and the images you select may be different from mine, but I hope there are a few images that tickle your fancy and give you pause as we all end another year on the planet, and are poised to start the New Year.

Inspiring images this week hail the beauty of the world around us, the joy of life and liberty, the austerity of the city and the wonder of the human spirit. And of course, no collection would be complete without a surreal and thought-provoking image that conveys the angst of life in the modern world.

Artists this week include Paolo Ricciotti, book contributors Shel Serkin and Lynette Jackson, Leon (Apped As), newcomers Tomoyasu Koyanagi and A®ViN, Jan Gelinder, Mark Whitcombe, Karen (wisteriax), Alexey Ovsyannikov, David Bithell, David DeNagel and Parenek (alekseykyznetsov). Thank you all, and may all of you have a splendid Christmas and Happy New Year!

 

For the things that make us smile . . .

Holiday Whimsey by Karen (Wisteriax)

Backstory: I wanted to take some ‘detail’ photos of our holiday decorations and give them a vintage look. The sun was shining through the white sheers behind the tree, and I experimented with overexposing the background to really draw attention to a single colorful ornament. I used VSCOcam because I love the high quality filters, and the ‘fade’ feature. After taking this shot, I decided to make it look like an advert in a magazine from the 1950s, using the 07 filter and tweaking the fade & saturation levels to really pop the red color & give it a velvety look. Then I decided to play with the image in Lorystripes and add a whimsical red ribbon element wrapping around the subject. The contrast between the crisp modern ribbon stripes and the faded vintage ornament adds some interest to an otherwise commonplace subject.

Apps used: I shot and edited this with VSCOcam, then added the ribbons with Lorystripes because I thought the swirly design on the ornament called for some swooshes.

 

For love . . .

Maddy by Shel Serkin

Backstory: Shot in the New York City underground
Apps used: Hipstamatic

 

For faith (whatever it may be) . . .

C123 by Paolo Ricciotti

Backstory: Shot in Rome – wall painting on the Via Adorno Gerolamo
Apps used: Shot and edited with iPhone4 using Snapseed and Photoshop Express

 

For the joy of walking in high heels on the beach . . .

AM6:17 by Tomoyasu Koyanagi

Apps used: iPhone5S + VSCOcam

 

For the freedom to choose . . .

the road by Jan Gelinder

Apps used: VSCOcam and Mextures

 

For our families and those close to us . . .

My Father at 92 by David DeNagel

Apps used: Hipstamatic Oggl, Tinto 1884 Lens and D-Type Plate Film

Backstory: My Father turned 92 in October. I always visit him when I can and never fail to see him at Christmas. He is such a good model. He understands and supports my need to photograph and is an essential subject.
Although he posed for some shots, I took this while he was unaware. Dad was in a meditative mood during our discussions that day and we talked of many things, both present and nostalgic. Although, he must use a cane now due to infirmity, he hangs on doing the best he can with what he has.
This portrait was intended to display a darkening around his life and yet maintain a tenderness in the rendition.
I wanted a straight forwardness in this photograph; an image to stand on composition, the merits of subject and the light falling on that subject. More and more I find this to be the most satisfying treatment in my work. With this in mind, I shot and processed the photo only in Hipstamatic Oggl. I used Tinto lens and D plate film to capture the qualities of “soul” I wanted in this simple,bittersweet and loving image.

 

For the wonder of art and architecture . . .

1939 by Leon (Apped As)

Backstory: 1939 is of the detail above the entrance to the Chaffers Building on the Wellington city waterfront, built in the Art Deco style. This building was a government office for years before being left derelict for a number of years in the 90s. It’s now an upmarket apartment building overlooking the Marina and Overseas Terminal, also in the process of being rebuilt. I’d always liked this detail of the building and have shot it many times. I love the patina of the copper facade and the little lead light windows in it. I waited till a cloud passed in front of the sun and quickly shot off a few shots in my new ‘go to’ HDR app VividHDR, very quick and little if no ghosting at all using this app, and can be hand held too. And hey presto that’s my photo.

Apps used:
iPhone 4s
VividHDR
Snapseed
Laminar
Titles

 

For the beauty of the animals with whom we share the planet . . .

Untitled by Alexey Ovsyannikov

Apps used: Processed with VSCOcam using the m5 preset

 

For the grace, elegance and simplicity of nature . . .

#flower #macro by David Bithell

Apps used: Hipstamatic, Oggl, Lowy Lens and Blanko Film

 

For the inventiveness and all the variations of life on this earth . . .

“Bangaw” by A®ViN

Apps used: Olloclip macro lens, 645PRO, Photoshop Express, Snapseed, Lenslight

 

To enjoyment of the seasons and warmth and safety from the cold . . .

French Lilac in rime by Mark Whitcombe

Backstory: We had a major ice storm over the weekend, which fortunately just flanked us to the south (where there was major devastation to trees and power infrastructure in the Toronto area, just fifty kilometres away). At the time I took this photo, we were not at all sure that we wouldn’t also get hammered …
I get a lot of inspiration wandering and wondering around my town and especially my own property. I’m a botanist, with a love of looking closely at the minutiae of living things. I was quite stunned by the ice buildup. In the grey overcast light, I tried to isolate my subjects. The shallow depth of field of the Olloclip telephoto lens helps. So I lined up this French Lilac branch against plain snow and used Pureshot to take several series of three shots. This was the first shot — which I find is surprisingly often the best. I used Snapseed to accentuate that isolation and to bring out the rich colours of the twig and buds. I also used ReTouch to remove several small background blobs that distracted from the isolation of the twig.
All told, in the last four days while we deal with the (so far relatively benign) aftermath of the storm, I think I’ve taken nearly a thousand photos, and have produced several shots of which I am very proud, including this one. Interestingly to me, the best have been ones that have required no post-editing.

Apps used: Olloclip macro lens with Pureshot and Snapseed

 

For the joy of abstract art . . .

Art-Chitecture_005 SnapSeed+PhotoWizard+iDesign+ImageBlende r+VSCOcam by Lynette Jackson

Apps used: Snapseed, PhotoWizard, iDesign, ImageBlender and VSCOcam

 

For the delicious, acerbic bite of the surreal . . .

Рисунок n.1 | Picture n.1 by Parenek (alekseykyznetsov)

Backstory: In March 2013 I lived in India and made a lot of interesting shots. Just recently there was an idea to treat some of the images so that they seemed strange and interesting. Going to make a series of similar images and they will consist of three features – base frame – Indian picture, then part of the picture is the building and items from the Russian city in which I live, and another feature is people with animal heads.

Apps used: Juxtaposer, Snapseed, Blender, Laminar, Paint it! Now

 

And for those who we must not forget . . .

never forgotten by iris.river

Apps used: Hipstamatic Oggl

Backstory: I took this photo in honor of my Father, who was a WWII U.S. Army Air Force Veteran, and to all of the Veterans who have and continue to serve our country. Thank you to Wreaths Across America for providing the wreaths at the Veterans cemeteries across our country. I used Oggl Hipstamatic to create a soft golden, serene feel to this image. Merry Christmas and Peace to all.

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.

9 Comments

  1. Mark Whitcombe said:

    I’m honoured to be included in this marvellous collection! I spend time each week looking and learning from other presenters on this site!
    We had a major ice storm over the weekend, which fortunately just flanked us to the south (where there was major devastation to trees and power infrastructure in the Toronto area, just fifty kilometres away). At the time I took this photo, we were not at all sure that we wouldn’t also get hammered …
    I get a lot of inspiration wandering and wondering around my town and especially my own property. I’m a botanist, with a love of looking closely at the minutiae of living things. I was quite stunned by the ice buildup. In the grey overcast light, I tried to isolate my subjects. The shallow depth of field of the Olloclip telephoto lens helps. So I lined up this French Lilac branch against plain snow and used Pureshot to take several series of three shots. This was the first shot — which I find is surprisingly often the best. I used Snapseed to accentuate that isolation and to bring out the rich colours of the twig and buds. I also used ReTouch to remove several small background blobs that distracted from the isolation of the twig.
    All told, in the last four days while we deal with the (so far relatively benign) aftermath of the storm, I think I’ve taken nearly a thousand photos, and have produced several shots of which I am very proud, including this one. Interestingly to me, the best have been ones that have required no post-editing.

  2. Apped As said:

    Lovely to be among such talented company, thank you Bob for choosing one of mine for this weeks Apps Uncovered.
    I’m loving The Road, My Father, the Bird and Flower shots, so nice to see Oggl/Hipsatmatic used in some of these. Happy New Year everyone. Cheers

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