Snapseed – my go to app of the moment


IMG_1365I love mobile photography.  I’ve been a fan since I discovered Instagram in March 2011.  But to many people Instagram is purely about taking a quick snap using the camera feature of Instagram and posting it straight away using one of the inbuilt filters.  That’s certainly part of what got me hooked on Instagram way back when, but there is so much more to mobile photography than Instagram.

Thankfully, Instagram allows the user to edit an image before it’s posted, giving the photographer a chance to be a bit more creative with their work, and get the desired look and feel of the photograph before it’s time to share.

Many mobile photographers produce work that may be more akin to art, in that the processes used, whether the use of filters, layers, blending etc, produce work that might bear little resemblance to a traditional photograph.  Others might use editing processes to gently enhance an image, to improve the photograph and the view.  I prefer to fall into the latter category, and my favourite app for applying subtle enhancements is Snapseed.

A few months ago Snapseed could be purchased for £2.99, until Google got hold of it and made it available for free .  In my opinion, it is still a bargain at £2.99!  I’m not offering a tutorial here (there are some getting started tutorials here) but it has all the essential basic features, like crop, straighten, sharpening, tilt shift, and all the usual exposure and saturation controls.  It also has a number of filters, black and white, vintage, grunge and drama.  But the best thing about it is its ease of use.  I have to confess I didn’t get it at first, but once I did get it, I found it intuitive and extremely powerful.  Most of my photographs are edited with nothing else.

There are many photography apps around, many offering a great suite of features, but for all round capability and ease of use, Snapseed is definitely my go to app of the moment.

A quick Oggl at Hipstamatic

Salvador St Pauls

Salvador St Pauls

On 4th July 2013, as an Independence day treat, Hipstamatic released an update to both their classic Hipstamatic app and the new and rather useful Oggl app.  The special double update meant that all those elements of films, lenses and flashes that Hipstamatic devotees have invested in over the last couple of years or so, can be utilised to even greater effect in their latest Instagram competitor Oggl.

I love Hipstamatic.  It’s the app I go to when I’m feeling ever so lazy, or I need a quick edit to produce a great image for immediate to upload to Twitter or Instagram.  I have to confess that I’ve still not mastered the art of selecting the right combinations of the three elements, so I still like to experiment with the randomising shake!

But what Oggl brings to the table, is the one thing I always wished Hipstamatic would do, not quite an original camera roll image, but the next best thing in having the ability to fiddle about and select a preferred filter and lens for the image after the photo has been taken.  Eureka! Oggl also offers an extensive social media sharing capability, all the usual suspects like Instagram, Twitter, Flickr etc.  Oggl also has a community of its own, but I’ve not taken advantage of that feature as yet!

There is no doubt that Hipstamatic filters are the original and, arguably, the best, so this new found option is perfect.  My shaking days may be over!