Posts By bnlaing

iPhone Photography–Digital Goes Digital

(Click post heading to leave a comment.)  The images in this website started out as photographs.  They were captured with a camera similar to one you may have in your pocket or purse—an iPhone “smartphone.”  Using processing applications designed for the iPhone, each original photograph was rendered to achieve the “look” I felt best conveyed the emotional appeal of the scene for me. This usually involved employing many different post-capture processing apps, layered on top of one another—all done in the touch-screen environment of the iPhone.

The history of photography has been highlighted by technological innovation.  The pace of innovation in recent years has been astounding.  These images reflect that.  The current level of development of digital post-processing has given the photographer a tremendous amount of freedom to interpret images—from the highly representational to the purely abstract.  Up until recently, this required a steep learning curve to master complex software like Adobe Photoshop (after absorbing the 300-page manual that came with one’s digital camera).

During my forty-plus years of making photographic imagery, I have used a variety of tools:  35mm and medium format film cameras, a traditional wet darkroom, digital SLR’s, photographic printers, software programs, etc.  Each method of capture and post-capture processing imparted its own characteristic look and feel to the resulting image.

Today, however, the photographer has fewer constraints imposed by the limitations of his or her equipment.  An original, digitally-captured photograph can be rendered in hundreds of different ways through the use of digital, post-processing tools.  Imagination and creativity can have free rein.  Now, all of this can be done “on the fly,” in the field; ready to be shared via the internet, using “smart” devices.

Some people ask whether images like these are still photographs?  What “medium” was used to produce them?  For me, these questions aren’t really pertinent.  I choose to call images like these, “digitally-interpreted photographs,” which explains and honors the source of the image while acknowledging the methods used to transform them.  My objective for my photography has always been  to make images that please me (and hopefully others) and have fun in the process.  My methods of going about this have changed over the years.  I have exchanged film and chemicals for pixels and programs, but I am still focused on making imagery that connects emotionally with people.