Apps Uncovered – Top 40 from 2014!

Selected by Nicki Fitz-Gerald and Bob Weil

Nicki and I thought that, with the number of new artists that have emerged over the last year, it would be great to select our favorite images of 2014 and share them here. It was extraordinarily difficult to narrow the list to twenty each – yet even then, in an amazing testimony to their creativity, several artists emerged with more than one entry – often with one (or two) selected by each of us. Without singling out a particular artist, but simply looking at the work, here’s the final tally: Mariko Klug (3), Shinnya Umetsu (2), Brandon Kidwell (2), Cedric Blanchon (2), Cindy Buske (2) and Erica Brothers (2).

At the pinnacle stands the Top Tier Five (which would have been six, if we hadn’t both selected Andrea Koerner’s wonderful image with a profusion of flowers) – including the work of Mariko Klug, Andrea Koerner, David DeNagel and Brandon Kidwell.

No less worthy is the work of the remaining artists of phenomenal talent featured here: Lynette Jackson, Cindy Buske, Photomikro, Wayne Greer, Shinnya Umetsu, Susan Blase, Angie Johnson, Cedric Blanchon, Laura Peischl, Mark Walton, Susan Tuttle, Nettie Edwards, ale2000, goh, Erika Brothers, Anne-Martine Parent, Aylin Argun, Chris Stern, joseluisbarcia, Cecily Mariece Caceu, Shinnya Umetsu, Paul Moore, hanakai2001, Michał Koralewski, Rob Pearson-Wright, Cedric Blanchon, Janine Graf, Pamela Viola, Milo Salgado, Jack Webb, Eloise Capet, and Michael Trombley. While some of these artists are “veterans” (Lynette Jackson, Nettie Edwards, Susan Blase and Cecily Mariece Caceu are contributors to our book), most of these outstanding creatives first began posting to our Flickr group in 2014.

Nick and I would like to thank all of the contributors to our Flickr group, and those who follow this website. We think that when we share the apps and backstory behind each of these images, we all benefit in understanding each artist’s creative process. We hope that all of you continue to refine your art, and contribute to our group, in 2015. As always, we look forward to seeing your next post! All the best to each of your for 2015.

The Top Tier Five

The Sheep And Their Chapel

Untitled by Mariko Klug

Backstory: This photo is from my recent trip to Norway. The chapel is located near to a beautiful beach in Unstad, Lofoten Islands, with a lot of sheep around!
Apps used: It was taken with Hipstamatic Jimmy lens + DC film with flash effect. I always start my editing with PhotoToaster. The original image was very dark, so I adjusted contrast and brightness, added a vignette, cropped it a little bit and used the lighting brushes to highlight some areas (sheep, grass and chapel). Then I added some filters, the Dreamstate filter of Camera+ for the dreamy effect, VSCOcam m3 preset and Picfx PFX Film 5x.



There are always flowers for those who want to see them by Andrea Koerner

Apps Uncovered: Brushstroke, Mextures and Faded
Backstory: Since I haven’t been able to get out and shoot new photos recently this is actually an older photo I took last year. I have been going back and re-editing older photos a lot recently. I love flowers and liked the colors of this one. I have recently been doing a lot of creating with Mextures and started with that app on this one. Then brought it into Faded (a new app I recently discovered) and applied one of their filters. After that I wanted to give it some softness so I brought it into Brushstroke and applied the simple filter. Brushstroke is one of my favorite apps for softening a photo.


Untitled by David DeNagel

Apps used: oggl with John S lens and Uchitel 20 film
Backstory: This image was taken at the Friedens Evangelische Kirche,a small, historical country church in Moscow Mills, MO. It was early morning ,with a beautiful light streaming through one of the east windows, illuminating the simple altar and sparse furnishings. The church was locked so I shot through a closed window on the opposite side of the building, bracing the iPhone flush against the glass to avoid any shake or unnecessary reflections. Taken with Oggl. John S lens and Uchitel 20 film. No further post processing.



Autumn Pastels

Autumn Pastels by Mariko Klug

Apps used: Taken with Camera+, edited with Camera+ (Nostalgia filter) and PhotoToaster (cropping and minor adjustments)

Backstory: I’ve been waiting a long time for a foggy day like this. Then it finally happened last week and luckily I had a day off, so I got up very early and went to explore a forest near Ebersberg in Bavaria, Germany. I just couldn’t get enough of how incredibly beautiful things look shrouded in fog. The fog turned the vibrant autumn colours into soft pastel tones and created such a mystical atmosphere…

Mystery lies within

Mystery lies within by Brandon Kidwell

Apps used: iPhone5, Camera+, Filterstorm, VSCOCam

Backstory: This image has two meanings and sources of inspiration. The first of which is within a three part series I titled Introspection which were all Double Exposure style edits showing a different aspect of mental states. This image represents the mysteries that lie within ourselves. I wanted to somehow portray an image of both mystery and the search for which I hope I accomplished here. My face looking off into the distance represents the search and the silhouetted figure standing in the marshy fog represents the mysteries that lie withing.

The second and more personal backstory to this image is the silhouetted figure standing in the marsh is my son. Mobile Photography has become a passion and a hobby of convenience and I rarely ever go shoot just for the sake of taking pictures for lack of free time. I tend to pull off the road enroute to work to or while killing time waiting to go somewhere so mobile photography has become something that I don’t get to share with my family as much as I’d like. This particular morning my son was passing me coming home from work as I was on my way into work and he saw me standing in the mud in my work attire setting up my tripod to silhouette myself to have a figure in the frame. He stopped jumped into the frame and we got to spend some time just hanging out in the mud. Seems like a simple moment but sometimes those unplanned incidents mean the most. This shot blends both of us into one image and reminds me of moments such as that with my son.


The Best of the Rest . . .


Gothica by Cindy Buske

Apps Used: This image was taken on Oggl using the Hongdae Pak – Yoona lens + Blanko 1 film. No additional post-processing was done. I have noticed when I actually shoot with the Blanko 1 film (rather than edit the shot to this film afterward), the lines and textures inherent in the design are minimized. An interesting effect that happened to work well for this photograph.
Backstory:  we were going for a gothic look and feel for the series. This photo was shot at the same location, Northern State Recreation Area, as my other image included this week, but in a more open building with more light. My daughter’s lace dress and the black balloons as props fit nicely with the high contrast BW created by this lens and film combo. Her expression here perfectly represents the mood and tone we set out to portray. A little over-the-top drama is a good thing now and then!

Rainy day girls

Rainy day girls by Photomikro

Apps used: Hipstamatic john S, black keys extra fine. VSCOcam X2

Buttercup Sunset

Buttercup Sunset by Mariko Klug

Apps used: This picture was taken in a Buttercup meadow in my neighbourhood at sunset.
Backstory: It was shot with Hipstamatic Jimmy lens and DC film, then I cropped and made minor adjustments with PhotoToaster. For some softness I added the Dreamstate filter of Camera+, then applied the Bokeh Baby filter of Mextures.


Teter Hill Road by Wayne Greer

Apps used: Shot with Iphone 5 using 645 Pro. Apps used were Snapseed ,Mextures and Afterlight.


Power by Shinnya Umetsu

App used: iPhone5s with Stackables and Filterstorm.
Backstory: Silhouette of her that was assimilated into the light and color of this location gave me a strong imagination.


Getting Sleepy by Susan Blase

Apps used: Hipstamatic/Oggl, Lumie and Mextures
Backstory: This shot I took with hipstamatic/Oggl. Poppies are one of my favorite flowers, however the window to shoot them is rather short and even shorter if cut. I was lucky enough to gather a few before a thunderstorm and I shot one against the grey sky. I later wanted to create a sleepy vibe to go with the fowers being synonymous with slumber. I used an app I quite like called Lumie then added to the hazy effect with Mextures. By the time I was done it was very late and I was quite groggy myself, so I simply named it as such.


Jordan’s song by Angie Johnson

Backstory: A dear friend of mine (Jordan) is always supportive of my love of photography and all things artful. Her passion is music. We work together and often have the opportunity to share life stories. She mentioned that her grandfather not only played all instruments but he also crafted instruments by hand: including violins, guitars, mandolins, banjos, and a few others. I am always on the lookout for peculiar and/or unique things with which to include in my photography. I asked if she would share one of the handmade instruments with me to satisfy my creative muse. Knowing that I wanted to create something special for her (Jordan), much thought went into creating this piece.

Families are special. Our friends are special. When we can share our love of art, in order to touch the lives of others, together we become special. Thanks for all the photography love. I am very appreciative.

Apps used: iPhone5 with…

Camera+ — I use this app most often when shooting. The quality is fantastic and it easily works with my remote shutter. Within this app, I crop the image to a square (my favorite size with which to work), select Backlit under the scene selection, and select Retro then Ansel under the filter selection.

Noiseware — This is my favorite app to remove unwanted noise and it just brings a soft clarity to the photograph.

FocalLab — I selected Motion Blur, within this app, to give the shot some movement.

Mextures — I selected Emulsion. I used a mixture of Jefferson and Tesla … you can move them around and land where you feel like you are satisfied with the results.

I believe that’s it. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. I am always pleased to share artful works and tips with others.

If you create a piece, after sharing these steps, I would love to see your work. Feel free to tag me in or let me know, so I can see your goodies.

The neighbor

The neighbor by Cedric Blanchon

Apps used: Noir Photo and CameramaticBW
Backstory: The Neighbor, I work in difficult neighborhoods, ghettos are going to say! I was working and I saw this huge man with his dog, a doberman, by the window, I whipped out my smartphone, I approached and I pretended to look for something above, I framed and I took the photo, then I used the Noir application, and cameramatic BW expired (a combo that I love for black and white, it changes the filters that everyone uses)


The Space Between Them/ Series/ 2 by Laura Peischl

Apps used: Picture taken with proCamera8 and processed in Snapseed
Backstory: China Town, San Francisco. I saw this two having quite a loud argument and was intrigued, as they looked pretty elegant, not the type of people shouting at each other on the street. Then, she said something, got her phone out and they crossed the street.


Bridlington by Mark Walton

Apps used: Apple iPhone 5 camera app
4.12mm f/2.4
Flash did not fire
ISO 50

Competition Onions

Competition Onions by Lumilyon (Nettie Edwards)


Apps used: Some notes about processing and Apps used: The competition tent lighting was very general. On the day, I was shooting with Hipstamatic: Wonder/Blanko C16. For post-processing, I used  Snapseed, to adjust brightness/contrast and pull through more detail of the onion skin. Final glamour added by B&W processing in LoMob.

Backstory: “Would you like a ticket for the Malvern Autumn Show?” A kind colleague enquired. How could I turn down the opportunity to attend a major event in the Midlands horticultural calendar?  Not only am I resident artist at Painswick Rococo Garden in Gloucestershire, where I’m transforming mobile photographs into Anthotypes (an alchemical 19th century process by which prints may be made with plant matter) I’m also an allotment gardener. So it was that I found myself soaking up the atmosphere, alongside thousands of other visitors at the Three Counties Show ground, in Worcestershire.

Like most veg gardeners, I have a bit of a competitive streak, so I made a bee-line to the hall that was hosting entries for the UK National Giant Vegetables Championship. There I encountered the new record holders of titles such as: World’s Longest Beetroot, World’s Heaviest Pumpkin and World’s Largest Vegetable Soup Collection Of Vegetables. These magnificent specimens are just a few of the myriad photo opportunities presented by Horticultural Shows. There are many more halls and tents where anxious competitors hover over their protégées in nervous expectation of a prize.

Elsewhere, I enjoyed watching demonstrations of rural skills such as wood-turning and Horse-ploughing. Keeping my credit card firmly in my pocket, I enjoyed the entertaining patter of stall-holders, enticing me to part with my money in exchange for exotic plants, bulbs and fruit trees. At the show, you can buy every item of gardening tool and equipment you’ll ever need, along with essential kit to fix it; fancy garden furniture and even fancier hand-wrought decorative metalwork; glamorous greenhouses and sheds; garden-themed home wares; products for your pampered pets; outdoor clothing, hand-crafted gifts, wool-filled pillows to lull you to sleep and Hot Tubs to soothe your aching body after a day’s hard digging. When your energy begins to flag, top up your sugar levels with delicious home made sweets and cakes (Red Bull or Jagermeister flavoured fudge, anybody?) Once revitalised, you may enjoy exploring the photogenic Fun Fair, Animal Kingdom, acrobatic aeroplanes and a Wartime-themed beer tent.

Despite this embarrassment of riches, I hadn’t intended to shoot photos that day because it was my first visit to this huge show and I wanted to see as many of the exhibits and stalls as possible. However, I eventually succumbed to the lure of the Harvest Produce competition tent, where on long tables were displayed the pride and joy of Midlands amateur gardeners: flowers, fruit and veg that had been cosseted and fussed over for months, presented scrubbed and trussed by proud growers who hoped to see a prize-winning card placed on the table, next to them. As an allotment gardener, I fully appreciate the time and attention it takes to grow such perfect specimens. The trio of onions featured in this photograph weren’t awarded a prize, but they were beautiful in my eyes.

A trip to a Horticultural show isn’t a cheap day out, but if you’re looking for photographic inspiration, it’s a winner!


eyes turned inwardly by Susan Tuttle

Apps used: Camera+, FocalLab, Mextures, PicFX, Filterstorm Neue, Image Blender
Backstory: When in need of image content to manipulate on my iPhone or iPad, which is primarily self-portraiture (although I don’t think of it that way — more like I am using my body as a model/prop), I construct my make-shift studio, which consists of a sheet attached to a clothesline. In the case of this piece, I used a black sheet for the background. I faced a north-facing window, attached my iPhone to a tripod, took advantage of the self-timer in Camera+ and move around, dancing and striking poses. I take a bunch of photos during sessions like these, which I’ll draw from for material over time. The image used for this piece spoke to me from the bunch. I started to manipulate in Camera+ — cropping, adding a few filters and altering tones. I then added blur with Focal Lab and blended the blurred version with the previous version in Image Blender, using the masking tool to reveal parts that I did not wish to be blurred. I added further filters and textures, slowly building them up. For the final step I rotated the piece 90 degrees to the right — I love how it made me look like a contortionist in the neck region.


The day the world rained down by ale2000

Apps used: Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset

Colorful reflection by goh.

Colorful reflection by goh.

Apps used: Processed with VSCOcam with a5 preset, Snapseed edit
Backstory: I placed the fountain in the middle of my frame and tried to shoot these colourful buildings and their reflections and then the cyclist appeared just in time to complete the composition:) the photo was taken in Krotoszyn, a town in the western Poland.


Gaze by Cindy Buske


Apps used and Process: Hipstamatic Classic – Tinto 1184 lens + C-Type Plate film. No additional post-processing was used.
Backstory: This is a photo of my daughter. My daughters and I often collaborate on the artistic side of a photo before it is taken. In this case, we wanted to create a traditional portrait with a bit of an ominous, eerie twist. The Tinto lens works well for this due to its effect on human eyes. We added black lace (which is actually the bottom portion of a dress) to enhance the dark undertones and give her a veiled appearance. I used a black cloth backdrop and two soft, homemade “studio” lights. The rest is in her gaze and our comfort level of working together.


Solitude by Brandon Kidwell

Apps used and Process: iPhone5 using Camera+ app to take advantage of the quick shutter and exposure for the fog. I used Noir for the dramatic black and white which I toned down a bit in Filterstorm using the Luminosity setting to blend the images, I used VSCOCam to finish for the smooth tone and finished by layering the final image with the original to save resolution and used noise reduction.

iPhone5, Filterstorm, Noir, VSCOCam

Backstory: One day my son had some car troubles and I drove to help him just as the sun was coming up. There was a thick fog covering the ground, thick enough to accumulate on the windshield and I spotted some hay bails in an open field. After the car issue was resolved, I asked him to be my subject and we returned to that field. His natural pose was one of a proud stance with his hood up so I envisioned immediately a somewhat take on the world feeling and captured him very low in the frame to later fill with clouds from another image, it doesn’t usually happen but this image turned out better than I envisioned at the time as the noise reduction in Filterstorm gave the clouds a smooth and flowing look.



02_Bitter,Sweet by Erika Brothers

Apps used: ProCamera, Filterstorm Snapseed and Mextures
Backstory: One day my son had some car troubles and I drove to help him just as the sun was coming up. There was a thick fog covering the ground, thick enough to accumulate on the windshield and I spotted some hay bails in an open field. After the car issue was resolved, I asked him to be my subject and we returned to that field. His natural pose was one of a proud stance with his hood up so I envisioned immediately a somewhat take on the world feeling and captured him very low in the frame to later fill with clouds from another image, it doesn’t usually happen but this image turned out better than I envisioned at the time as the noise reduction in Filterstorm gave the clouds a smooth and flowing look.I took the pic during a Christmas vacation family reunion. For the first shot I used ProCamera, Snapseed to make the adjustments to black and white and the center focus option to accent the flowers and hands, and blur the image background. I used Mextures to do the final touch up and blending the shades of greyish green general tones.


Café au Soleil, Bruxelles

Café au Soleil, Bruxelles by Anne-Martine Parent

Apps Used: Phone5 using Hipstamatic oggl.

Backstory: I took this picture because I liked how the woman was sitting alone, with her glass of wine, turning her back to the room. There was something very powerful and moving in this scene. It could mean that she was sad and lonely, or that she was serene, being alone and not needing anybody. I will never know.

I chose the Loftus lens in Oggl, because the blurry vignette emphasized the woman’s loneliness, and the D-Type Plate film to give the picture a sense of timelessness.

Untitled by xxfromneptune (Aylin Argun)

Apps Used: I took this photo with İphone4 and used the ShockMyPic, Blender,Facetune and vsco cam to process it.

012814_01 PhotoWizard+iDesign+ImageBlender+VSCOcam

012814_01 PhotoWizard+iDesign+ImageBlender+VSCOcam by Lynette Jackson

Apps Used: PhotoWizard, iDesign, Image Blender and VSCO Cam

A glimpse of the Stata Center

A glimpse of the Stata Center by Chris Stern

Apps Used: ProCamera, Mattebox, AfterFocus

Backstory: What you see here is a photo from the Stata Center located on the campus of Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA which was designed by one of my favorite architects Frank Gehry.

As you can see this is a very unique structure which is one that I wanted to highlight in a very different way as this building has been often photographed. My thoughts were to get a shot of the backside of the building looking up to the sky to showcase the various shapes of this amazing building.

When I sat down to post process this photo I wanted to create a dark and moody feel to it while closing in on a specific area of the structure which would appeal to the viewers eyes.


Teseracto by joseluisbarcia

Apps used: Taken and processed with Cameramatic app.

Driving by Darcelle XV

Driving by Darcelle XV by Cecily Mariece Caceu (cecilyc123)

Apps Used: I took this with my iPhone4s using Hipstamatic with the John S lens and the Big Up film. I also used Snapseed to adjust details, structure and contrast.

Backstory: Portland does not usually get very much snow but a couple of weeks ago a big storm moved through very quickly. I was trying to get home before the traffic got crazy but my desire to get some photographs overtook my sensibilities. My camera roll was full so I decided to quickly pull over to delete some photos to free up my camera roll. As I was about to take off, I noticed how beautiful the light was becoming with the snow and then this amazing old car came into view. I quickly opened Hipstamatic and shot with the combination that it opened on. I really like how the Big Up film puts the random tape border on the images — sometimes it works better than others though!

Autumn Scents

Autumn Scents by Shinnya Umetsu

Apps Used: Artstudio, Filterstorm, and Snapseed

Backstory: By incense of small red fruit, she visualized all the rest from her imagination. This shot was taken in the fall of last year.

Exploring The Big House

Exploring the Big House by Paul Moore

Apps Used: Taken and edited with an iPhone 4s using PhotoToaster, Mextures and LensLight

Backstory: This photo was taken in a place called Charleville Castle in my home town of Tullamore. It was built between 1800 and 1809. It is an amazing old building that had fallen into disrepair until the current owners moved in and began the slow and painful work of restoring it to it’s former glory.

The castle hosts a number of events (including a music festival) during the year to fund this restoration. I have been asked to be the photographer at one of these events in June. So in preparation for this I contacted the current owners to see if I could have a look around and they kindly obliged. I brought my kids up because I knew they would love the place.

I took this in one of the drawing rooms. A fantastic room decorated with antiques and with large windows for light. This was one of those lucky shots. My 2 and half year old daughter was just wandering around the room pretending to be a princess and she stopped to see what I was doing just as I took the shot. It really adds to the shot as she gives a sense of scale to the room. But it also adds a slightly eerie feeling to the shot. Particularly for people that know the history of the castle and the ghost stories associated with it 🙂

I cropped the original and adjusted the colour with PhotoToaster. I used Lenslight to enhance the light coming through the window. And finished it off with a filter from Mextures to give it a slightly vintage look.

triple layer

triple layer by hanakai2001

Apps Used: oggl, AfterLight, ImageBlender, Photocopier, effexy

Backstory: Japanese people are familiar with cherry blossoms as a symbol of spring, which signify the coming of spring when they bloom all together at the beginning of spring. one day I found a broken Sakura branch that has buds. I watered it. then a few days later it made flowers bloom. I wanted to take a still life of Sakura with the book of Tomomi Kawase’s colored printing drew Sakura . by accident my black cat appeared behind a book. that was the good moment for shooting.

Stirring the sky

Stirring the Sky by Michał Koralewski

Apps used: VSCO Cam

Backstory: I went for a walk with my kids. It was right after a heavy rain. My kids, like all the kids in the world, love to play in puddles and mud. I took a photo of my younger son, while he was poking a huge puddle near our house. After cropping and editing in VSCO Cam I noticed the stones in the puddle look like stars, so I decided to turn this photo upside down. Looks like someone was stirring the sky 🙂

At the end of the day sometimes a hug is enough until tomorrow

At the end of the day sometimes a hug is enough until tomorrow by Rob Pearson-Wright

Apps used: Shot taken with the native iPhone camera. Converted to black & white with Snapseed. Depth of field effect added with BigLens and lighting highlights applied using Noir.

Backstory: We’ve all had crappy days at work. Days when clocking off couldn’t come soon enough. Sometimes you know tomorrow will be just the same as the day you’ve just gotten through. You grin and bear it, knowing you’re one day closer to the weekend. I noticed this couple outside of a station entrance and moved closer to observe them. Clearly she’d had a crappy day and he was comforting her with a warm embrace. She seemed a little teary and overwhelmed by her day and he listened and comforted like a true gent.

He held her close and whispered calming words to her ear and listened when she spoke of her troubles during her day. We’d all be better off if we had someone to hold us and listen to our concerns. The hug that says ‘I’m always here for you’ is an underrated thing. Everyone needs that. It can keep you going, one day at a time.


Sugar! by Cedric Blanchon

Apps used: Camera +, Oggl and Superimpose

Backstory: This photo is part of a series “mini me” a bit surreal and humorous, this is the second of the series, until the next, I have lots of ideas 🙂 I made the small scale with toothpicks, I then took a picture with the timer of camera+ (I had to simulate taking the sugar cube) I made several before finding the right posture, then i took photo of the piece of sugar and I adjusted with superimpose, I placed my body behind the spoon, I deleted my feet for simulated my position behind the spoon, I then used oggl with the loftus lens combo + D-flat film . My Sugar was ready!

Privacy Problems

Privacy Problems by Janine Graf

Apps used: Juxtaposer, BlurFX (for their filters), Snapseed (vintage effect)

Backstory: I wanted to state that this is not my house; although I wish it were. When we were kicking around the idea to move to Massachusetts, we flew out during Thanksgiving week to make sure we wanted Massachusetts to become our new home. I had been drooling over this house on a real estate website so we decided to drive out and take a look during an open house. First of all, the house is PINK! I loved the idea of living in a pink house. This house felt so right to me; the owner was selling because his girlfriend (I don’t think they were married) had passed away and I believe he wanted to get away and start over. She was an artist and the walls were covered with her art. I will confess, I teared up when I walked inside. It was built in the late 1800’s and had charm oozing out of its walls. We weren’t in the position to buy at that time (we still had a house in Seattle to sell), but I’ll never forget this house. So glad I took photos that day.


Ruby by Pamela H. Viola

Apps used: Alayer, Snapseed and Lo-Mob

Backstory: I’ve been doing a lot of heavy compositing lately and wanted to do something simple, quiet and elegant with a single image as a way to clear my head and relax.

First I brought the image into Alayer to play with the color palette – soft and soothing. Then I added multiple layers of texture, also in Alayer.

Next, I brought the image into Snapseed for refinement of highlights and shadow, I wanted to decrease the contrast. I did a spot adjustment of the lips to make them darker and less saturated. Then I cropped the image a little.

Finally I used Lo-Mob (New Emulsion 71) to get the irregular border and runny look.


Man on Bench by Millo Salgado

App used: Hipstamatic

Backstory: I used HIPSTAMATIC for the shot, classic John S with BlacKeys super grain film. Suchitlán is a small town where traditions with pre-Hispanic Nahuatl origin are still preserved, like the hand carved in wood masks decorated with bright colors. People say is full of warlocks and witches and magic. This man was sitting on this bench one Sunday morning, talking to himself. The bench is outside a butcher’s shop, so there’s always dogs at the doors, like this one. I tried to capture an image, in black and white, trying to recreate the magic atmosphere of this Mexican town.

Untitled by Erika Brothers

Apps used: Superimpose, Alien Sky, Snapseed, Repix and Stackables

Backstory: On this particular piece I started with Superimpose to make the composition layout for the atmosphere of a reality of galactic star dream. Next step I used Alien Sky to create the stars, and light effect in the house I used Repix with Stain pen effect. Blending the night effect and focus more on the moon I used Snapseed. For my final representative touch I used Stackables to give texture of a painterly effect.


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.

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.


Pink by Michael Trombley

Apps used: Snapseed, Monovu, ShockMypic, SuperImpose.

BackStory: I was inspired by the Light softly spilling in through a small window. The overall Light was a bit Flat, adding the stand provided the texture and contrast allowing the Peonies to radiate. I began in Snapseed and Monovu to create the background. I chose to create two different exposure adjustments in Snapseed allowing Me to alter the light within SuperImpose. I really enjoy this step. Bouncing back and forth in SuperImpose provides the ability to alter and layer color, contrast, and depth to an image, that at first glance may appear very dull.

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. Jack Webb said:

    Nicki and Bob, Thank you for the recognition. It is an honor to be included among such talented and creative iPhoneographers.

  2. Cecily said:

    Thank you so much Nicki and Bob for selecting one of my images to be included here — I am so grateful to the both of you for all of your inspiration and support over these past years! Your spirits have guided me and I very much appreciate it. Congratulations to all of the other artists included here — I am continually inspired by your creative visions!!

  3. Janine Graf said:

    I’m a bit late commenting here, but better late than never! I wanted to thank you, Nicki and Bob, for selecting one of my images for your Top 40! The images showcased here are truly remarkable and it’s really an honor to share the same space with them. Thank you!

    • Bob WeilBob Weil said:

      Janine, no retrospective of the year’s best iPhone images would be complete without one of yours! It’s great having you as a contributor to our Flickr group and a fellow-traveler on the mobile photography/art journey!

  4. suzy blase said:

    Oh dear,

    Late to the party too. I had no idea I was on this but its just been how this year has been going for me!!! Thanks so much for including one of my shots. Its a beautiful collection, as are all of your selections. Its nice to see how everyone’s work is growing and evolving. I am so flattered to be a part of it. Thanks Nicki and Bob for your support and loveliness, it means a lot. And thanks for your hard work on the site.

    🙂 Congrats to all.