TMO Background Mode Encore Interview with Freelance Tech Jounalist Kirk McElhearn

· · Background Mode Podcast

Photo of Kirk McElhearn for Background Mode.

Kirk McElhearn is an expert technical journalist for all things Apple. He was a Senior Contributor at Macworld for 15 years, is known as “The iTunes Guy,” and writes about Macs, security, iTunes, books and music. Kirk has also written several “Take Control Books,” including tutorials on iTunes, Audio Hijack and Scrivener. In this encore appearance, Kirk and I chatted about the evolution of photography at Apple, the emergence of the iPhone as a pocket supercomputer-camera, AI technologies and facial recognition used in iPhone photography, lens and CCD technologies, Aperture vs. iPhoto/Photos, managing digital assets, and how sophisticated software has allowed the average user to take great photos. And more. We finished with a discusion of Kirk’s new podcast (with Jeff Carlson) called PhotoActive which is all about photography and the Apple ecosystem.

Photolemur's 35 Tips for Stunning Landscape Photos

· · Cool Stuff Found

Photolemur—the photo editing app—has a new blog post called the “35 Composition Tips for Taking Stunning Landscape Photos.” I immediately checked it out because I am almost always highly dissatisfied with my landscape shots. It includes some common ideas such as the rule of thirds, but there was a bunch of stuff that was new to me, and I thought it was a great article. Topics include using lines to draw your attention, how to frame the subject, using people or animals properly, lighting, colors, framing, timing, and a whole lot more. Each tip comes with a representative photo, and they’re all gorgeous. If you want to take better landscapes, this piece is a must-read.

Photolemur’s 35 Tips for Stunning Landscape Photos

This AR App Gives You a Virtual Photo Studio

· · Cool Stuff Found

Heads up iPhoneographers: this virtual photo studio lets you work with models, studio lights, and more. Each model is based on a real person, and you can place them into any scene you want, like a beach, studio, or desert. You can pose the model how you want, then use virtual lights and light modifiers to create your shot. Color corrections can be applied in real time, and you can change the direction of the sun and add weather like snow. The brains behind the app is Superba AR CEO Raffael Dickreuter, who has worked in the visual effects industry in Hollywood with movies like Iron Man and Avengers 2. The app is pricey though, costing US$10. App Store: Photo Studio – AR

This AR App Gives You a Virtual Photo Studio

Polaroid Announces Flexible LED Lighting Panel for Photographers

· · Cool Stuff Found

Polaroid Flexible LED Lighting Panel

Polaroid announced the Flexible LED Lighting Panel Tuesday. Aimed at photographers, this panel is 16mm thick and 12-inches square. It comes with a frame, but is designed to be molded into whatever shape needed. It also comes with a diffusion filter, and it’s remote control for four different channels for precise control over the light. It uses 256 LEDs to produce 4,500 lumens. Polaroid is selling it through Amazon at $124.99.

Apple's New Instagram Account Showcases iPhone Photography

· · Cool Stuff Found

Apple just launched an Instagram account to highlight photos shot on iPhones. Right now the account has a handful of videos showing off different photographer’s work, but soon there’ll be more because Apple will be watching for the #ShotoniPhone hash tag. Over time Apple’s Instagram feed will no doubt have some amazing shots that highlight the quality of photos you can snap with an iPhone. Now I need to go back and add #ShotoniPhone to some of my pics.

Apple’s New Instagram Account Showcases iPhone Photography