Sunday, November 29, 2009

the iPhone and True HDR

Geek that I am, I'm somewhat embarrassed to say that just a scant six months after I bought my iPod Touch, I have succumbed to the call of the iPhone.

Now before you judge me too harshly, let me give you a few of my reasons.

Number one, I HATED my old phone, an LG something or other that was on Verizon. The worst part of it was that when you had to press a number to make a selection, instead of making a selection, it would open some obscure menu on the phone.

This meant I was always having to mess with it if I made any kind of call that required pressing numbers. And don't most of them these days?

And it was too small.

And I couldn't add ringtones to it.

And the camera was stinky.

And, well, all right, I WANTED an iPhone.

So when we were in Santa Fe, stocking the Hunny Bunny up with boots and hats and Levis, I got a new phone.

For anyone who cares, the phone number is the same.

Boy, is this thing slick.

There are thousands (maybe millions) of aps, some quite useful, some just a hoot. It has a built in GPS, which actually works pretty well. And a built in compass that gives me longitude and latitude (great for setting up the satellite TV). And it syncs perfectly with my Mac, calendars, contacts, my 1Password program, my DVD tracking program, and even my recipe collection.

Did I mention that it goes on the internet?

I LOVE this thing.

And I have to admit, that for someone like me, the camera isn’t half bad. Weighing in at 3 megapixels, I won't be blowing these images up and printing them, but they're really not bad. The best thing about the camera is all the little helper aps you can get to enhance it's capabilities. There's even a free Photoshop application for manipulating your pictures right in the iPhone.

My favorite iPhone ap right now is called TrueHDR.

HDR or high dynamic range imaging is a process where you take two or more pictures of the same image at different exposures. Then you combine them together for a much more vibrant picture.

Lately, I've been exploring HDR, playing with images from my regular camera in Photoshop, but TrueHDR (which costs just $1.99 from the iTunes Store) allows you to take HDR photos in no time, right in your iPhone.

The picture below was taken from inside Cholula Red. I took one picture where I focused on the image of Pedernal out the window (which caused the inside of the rig to appear totally black). Then I took the second photo, focusing on the inside of the rig (in which the window was completely blown out and white). Then I pressed merge and here's the result.

As always, you can click on the image to see it at a higher resolution. Now I realize that this photo won't be winning any prizes (especially for composition, I could have cleaned off the couch before taking the shot . . .)

But I have to admit I'm intrigued. Occasionally, I'll be posting pictures here that I've taken with my iPhone. I'm just looking at it as an opportunity to try another kind of photography.

Here's one more shot that I took from inside the dining hall here at Ghost Ranch. Again, this would be a difficult shot except for the iPhone and this slick little ap.

The geek in me is quite happy!


Bob Davis said...

A year or two ago the "Mother Goose and Grimm" comic strip showed Capt. Kirk and Mr. Spock from the Starship Enterprise, visiting a shopping mall in the early 21st century. Mr. Spock is saying, "Have you noticed that the earth people of this period have communicators that send and receive pictures. Ours cannot do this, Sir. That is highly illogical."
from Bob Davis
RV Piscataqua River

NancyG said...

lol....wish at&t had better coverage, I WANT and iphone! It doesn't work well where we are. Don't feel bad about the couch, mine in the rv is worse! It's my bookshelf!

Kate said...


AT&T was a concern for me also, but we've kept Terry's phone on Verizon, so now we have better coverage (at least that's the theory). That said, nobody gets cel reception here at Ghost Ranch, so for now at least, it's a moot point. Still, get to play with all the other doodads on the iPhone.


Marcia said...

I love my iPhone and have several camera apps - but finally got tired of wading through so many apps to find the perfect ones. Thanks for this post - I'm adding this app to my collection after seeing your photos.

Melinda said...

I just recently got an iPhone too and am loving the various camera apps! Thanks for mentioning True HDR. Another one I just heard about and have added to my iphone is "TiltShiftGen" it captures that the look of a tilt shift lens and is really fun to play around with. "CameraBag" is another that has lots of presets that mimic the look of old film cameras. Very fun! Looking forward to seeing more of your results!

Julie and Lisa said...

Thanks for the tip! I'm downloading this now and agree with the earlier poster that there are sooo any apps that it's hard to know which to get. Appreciate the tip along with the photo examples!
(and I love Bob's Star Trek quote!)