Macworld’s Jackie Dove has published her review of iPhoto 2.0 for iOS, the new version of Apple’s mobile photo editor for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. She likes it quite a bit, writing:
iPhoto 2.0 for iOS is a fantastic upgrade to Apple’s mobile consumer image editing flagship program; its streamlined, updated interface is a joy to use. Though not as cute and whimsical as last year’s debut version, its swift operation, direct controls, enhanced sharing, and no-nonsense interface make it a must-have upgrade.
Other pressing deadlines have kept me from digging into the new version in depth, but it’s still the photo editor I turn to first on my iPad. I’m looking forward to seeing how well it performs on my new iPad Air, since Jackie’s review suggests a lot of the processing is now being handled by the graphics processor.
Google announced improvements to its Google+ service today, with a focus on photography. One of the items mentioned was an update to Snapseed that adds a new HDR Scope filter to the versatile image editor. According to Google, this implementation uses pixel edge detection instead of relying solely on tone mapping. As soon as the iOS app update was available, I had to throw an image at it and see what the results were.
Here’s an original photo, shot with a Nikon D90 and imported to my iPad via Eye-Fi. This is the JPEG portion of the Raw+JPEG pair I shot.
Here’s the same shot taken into the HDR Scape filter. This is with a setting strength of +83, the default that Snapseed used.
That’s too much HDR effect for me, so I dialed the effect down to +47. Total time editing: about two minutes.
In the “learn something new” department, I ran across an interesting discovery today.
First, some setup. I woke up before dawn to catch the sunrise in the Columbia River Gorge, and for some reason my camera’s battery didn’t last very long—I think it was the combination of the cold weather, composing my shots using Live View, and transferring the images from my Eye-Fi card to my iPad. With a full day of shooting ahead, and only one extra battery available, I was in trouble.
Jump ahead a few hours, I want to transfer my newest photos to the iPad but not kill the spare battery in the camera. So, I attach my iPad Camera Connection SD adapter to copy the photos directly. The problem is that connecting the SD card to the iPad using the adapter means I need to import the raw versions of my photos in addition to the JPEGs. (I’m shooting raw+JPEG so I can edit better-quality photos on the iPad than the previews generated by the camera.) What I want to do is import into ShutterSnitch which includes an option to copy only JPEG images.
That brings me to the surprise: I opened ShutterSnitch to see if it could import directly from the adapter (it can’t; Apple blocks access to the sync port, I believe), but suddenly the photos started importing anyway. The trick is that I’m using an Eye-Fi card. And when the card is connected to the iPad using the camera adapter, the iPad is also supplying the card with power, which in turn activates the Eye-Fi’s wireless hotspot.
So even though the card is physically connected to the iPad, it’s transferring images via Wi-Fi! Pretty cool when you don’t want to tax your camera battery and bypass the Camera Roll.
I’m at a photo workshop in Oregon and putting my iPad photography skills to work in the field. As I type this, I’m sitting in a van driving down the freeway from our last shoot, the Cedar Creek Grist Mill. Despite a lot of rain, I had a blast shooting this old structure and the water that runs alongside it. (Others in the group saw a few large salmon jumping up the falls, but I never spied one.)
But as we’re traveling, I took the opportunity to import my photos from my camera’s Eye-Fi wireless card onto my iPad (using ShutterSnitch), review them, and edit a couple in Apple’s iPhoto app. I’ll do more processing on the raw files later on my computer, but this gives me a chance to not only see what I captured, but also perform some basic edits and share a couple shots with friends… and write this post.
The iPad is a great photo viewer, but does it have enough oomph to handle photo retouching? Yes! In my latest article at Peachpit.com, I look at several ways to edit photos on the iPad, including red-eye removal, removing unwanted objects in the image, and compositing: Tips for iPad Photo Retouching
Are you thinking about taking just an iPad on a trip? How about a driving adventure through Asia in an absurdly small car? Ben Long undertook the Mongol Rally and writes about his choice to bring only an iPad to work with his photos of the excursion: “Putting the iPad Photo Workflow to the Test: The Mongol Rally.”
Broken exhausts, punctured tires, lack of a good histogram—these are the kinds of problems an iPad-based photographer faces on an event such as the Mongol Rally, a charity road rally that I have been participating in for the last nineteen days.
I’m a fan of Ben’s work, and this article is excellent.
Yahoo is buying Ghostbird Software, the makers of the PhotoForge 2 editing app and KitCam, an iPhone photo capture app, to improve Flickr. According to a report at PetaPixel, the apps are being pulled from the App Store and won’t be updated. If you own them already, they can still be used. It sounds like Yahoo is buying the company for its engineering talent, and technologies from the apps will probably find their way into Flickr apps.
I almost chose PhotoForge 2 as the example program for the editing chapter of the book, but at the time I was writing it (late 2011), the app’s results just weren’t very good. I liked its interface and approach, but that doesn’t mean anything when the adjustments it makes are sub-par. Instead, I turned to Photogene, which I stuck with in the second edition as well.
I’ve liked Flickr’s resurgence since Marissa Meyer took over at Yahoo, and hope this means even better software for Flickr. But it’s also too bad the apps are being mothballed. When Google acquired Snapseed, I feared that it would also die, but so far it’s still available (and free!). However, the company killed the Mac version, so I can’t completely rest easy that the iOS version will survive long-term.
This should come as no surprise: Adobe is working on a “Lightroom for iPad” app. What is unexpected is that a very early version exists enough to demonstrate the concept, which is exactly what Tom Hogarty did on Scott Kelby’s The Grid program. Cnet reports:
Adobe Systems plans to release high-end photo-editing software for tablets. The new app would be a close relative to Adobe’s Lightroom software for PCs and serve as a cloud-connected companion to the program.
Tom Hogarty, Adobe’s group product manager for Lightroom, demonstrated an early prototype version of the app Wednesday on the Grid, an online show from Photoshop guru Scott Kelby.
Adobe has done a good job with PC-centric photography software, but the company needs to better incorporate Internet connectivity and mobile devices into photography workflow, Hogarty said.
The article cites Photosmith and its ability to apply metadata and then sync it with Lightroom, but also touts the Adobe app’s capability to edit raw files. I’m impressed that the demo was done on an iPad 2, which includes just 512 MB of active memory. The third- and fourth-generation iPads contain 1 GB of memory, but still, apps that work with raw formats such as PiRAWhna are slow because the memory and processing demands are so high to work with raw files.f
It’s definitely an engineering hurdle, but with tablets gaining in popularity and PCs dropping, Adobe needs to plant a flag and embrace the future. I would be surprised if Apple isn’t working on an Aperture for iPad, or some utility that syncs with Aperture; more likely, that app will be an expanded iPhoto.
Looking for more detail about editing photos on the iPad or iPhone with Apple’s iPhoto for iOS? My friend Lisa L. Spangenberg has published a new ebook, Meet iPhoto for iOS. I find myself using iPhoto quite often when editing photos on the iPad. The book is only $5, and available from the iBookstore, Barnes & Noble (Nook format), and direct from Peachpit Press.
With this practical and invaluable guide, you’ll learn how to polish and share off your photos. Learn how to get images onto your iOS device; work with photos, albums, and events; edit and adjust photos; and share your finished work.
Over at Macworld, multi-hyphenate Derrick Story offers the “ultimate workflow” for processing photos using iPhoto on the iPad.
A growing number of enthusiast photographers are traveling with iPads instead of laptops. The lighter weight, thinner body, and WiFi + Cellular connectivity of an iPad (if you go that route) makes for a good companion on the road.
But just because you leave the computer at home doesn’t mean that you should ignore it when you return. Its greater horsepower and storage options make it a better choice for managing large photo libraries.