Looking for some inspirational fun with your photos? Whether or not you’re a pro or just want to look like one. These apps mostly for Iphone available in the iTunes Store, are free and loaded with cool features and effects. All have built in social sharing capabilities and millions of users so you can start a following of your photography work, promote your websites and have fun in the process. Below are my top 5 favorite picks.
With over 10 million users worldwide Instagram has quickly risen to the top of the photo app favorites list because of the stylish way it integrates your photos and filter effects with those of your friends and “followers.” With a real time feed, similar to Facebooks “News Feed” you can watch the world through the eyes of millions, join groups and comment on each others photos. Its a great way to meet and follow the lives of other creative photogs or just regular people having some fun.
Highlights for me in the Filters Gallery include a Lomo and a 1977 retro-effect as well as a tilt-shift blur effect that is really amazing when shooting cityscapes or landscapes. Choose a border to finish off your image and show the world who you are.
There are a lot of recent apps that make it easy to send a printed photo postcard in the mail, but this app features the highest quality printing possible. They print out on thick, glossy photo postcards at 300dpi resolution and you can use any photo app you want to take the pictures. Then it costs only .99 cents to have your photo delivered anywhere in the world.
Features I like are the personalized profile photo of the sender and a 140 count character message is included. You can also choose a photo from Facebook if you want or shoot within the app itself.
You can send invitations, thank you notes, baby announcements and more. Much more cost effective then having custom announcements created and shipped and so much more fun.
Their tagline is “digital photography never looked so analog.” Yes! When you open the app, the viewfinder becomes the back of an old 35mm camera. You can swipe through many lens, flash and film options (try the John S lens with Ina’s 1969 film) these come included and will transport you into the 60’s for only a buck ninety-nine.
Of course there are many options you can try together that come included and when you run out of fun ideas for what’s included, you can buy “hipstpaks” which are geographically themed for .99¢ My personal favorite being The Mission pak which has an eggshell white camera case and a 1935 style film. So pretty!
Of course all the social buttons are integrated giving you the ability to add your pics straight to facebook and/or flickr. Or if your feeling especially proud, you can enter your photos to weekly Hipstamatic contest where you win cash and prizes. Its truly the complete package!
This may be for the novice photographer, or the novice at heart, but who doesn’t love a good photobooth session with friends? Apple choose this app as one of the hottest trends of 2010. It turns your iPhone or iPad touch into a vintage photobooth and with the cool feature of AirPrint capability, you can print the strips directly from the app with a compatible printer. What I like about this app is its retro feel and lightheartedness, it doesn’t claim to be for professionals its just for having fun and sharing good times with friends. It perfectly replicates the intimacy, spontaneity and fun of a traditional photobooth, without the claustrophobia! Bring it to a party and see what happens next!
5. Pic Collage
Pic Collage is fun and very simple to use to create photo collages. Never have to mess with scissors and gluesticks again! You can import photos from your device, Facebook and your friends’ Facebook to source images for collages. You can add a variety of filter effects and make edits to the photos.
This app also integrates the social media channels nicely and as a bonus has a print and ship feature available.
Great idea if you are archiving a large gathering like a wedding or birthday or even if you are having some friends over and don’t want to have to share all the photos you took individually. Nice way to be creative and time efficient simultaneously! An awesome use of this app would be as an age archive for your kids, if you took pictures at 1 month, 3 months, 6 months… 3 years etc, you could have a visual all in one place to see your child as (s)he grows. It goes by so fast, what a cool way to capture time passing by.
I hope you get some great creative uses out of these apps! Don’t be shy, share your masterwork with us..