Our recent Florida trip was the first time I've taken nearly all our vacation photos using my iPhone. I am emotionally attached to my DSLR, but I was afraid to subject it to the sand and water at the beach. The iPhone 5 has a much better camera than my old 3GS, so this wasn't a great sacrifice.
I'm usually not a fan of preset filters and other camera app tricks. I find that many people think they can take an otherwise unremarkable photo, apply a camera app filter, and think it's a gem. Perhaps I've done the same here, but I do like the results.
My go-to camera app is Snapseed. It allows you to either take a photo with the app and then edit, or to import any previously taken photo from your library and post-process. I often use the Tune Image function to add brightness or additional color saturation, as well as to straighten or crop an image that I didn't get quite right. It was instrumental in correcting all the askew horizons taken while trying to keep up with two kids on the beach. While there are filters within Snapseed, I rarely use them.
Blux Pro, which I tried for the first time on this trip, is all about filters. It will "read" the weather and suggest which filter to apply (although I'm pretty sharp and could distinguish among sunny, cloudy, and rainy without help of an app). After that, you can apply any of several different mood and color filters. I spent many hours last week standing around watching a little boy with a net try to catch critters, so I fooled around with these filters to amuse myself. I won't use them as my default, but they were fun to play with and produced some dramatic results.
The only down side to Blux Pro is that you can only use it real-time; there is no ability to post-process previous shots. Because I was killing time anyway, this helped to pass the time. It would, however, be a serious problem if you were afraid of missing The Moment.
I took most of these photos with Blux Pro and did some additional edits with Snapseed on a few. Did I mention I had a lot of time on my hands?
What do you think? Average photos with simple filters or worthwhile results? Would you have guessed they were taken on a smartphone?