Edit cell phone pictures like the Photoshop boss that you are!
Every once in a while I receive a request to show my workflow editing cell phone pictures. At first I thought this would be impossible as I rarely show my cell phone pictures to anyone. Every once in a while I’ll post to Instagram or something, but those are just pictures of food and my kids and sometimes my kids eating food.
The reality is I don’t use my cell phone pictures for much more than documentation. I will snap a shot of something and do a quick edit to see if that spot would be worthy, but I don’t value them much. If anything I treat my cell phone pictures like Polaroids.
Long before the dawn of the digital world it was impossible to see your pictures after they were taken unless you developed them right away. This led many photographers to the purchase of a Polaroid Land Camera. They would set up the shot based on the view of the quickly printed Polaroid Land Cameras. A brilliant innovation that I now often emulate with my cell phone pictures.
The other night we were out having our family pictures taken at the Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City. I, of course, did not bring my camera to respect the photographer taking out pictures. Then I saw this crazy Giuseppe Arcimboldo display of sculptures. You may have seen his paintings, but I have never seen them in the form of 15 foot structures. I was blown away!
I took out the cell phone and snapped a shot. It was a horrible shot as I didn’t have time to compose it well or fight with the metering mode my phone was in. However, when I got home I edited it quickly in my S5 editor and was pretty shocked how well I could make a cell phone picture look with the basic editing tools.
Before you shun your cell phone, think of it as your land camera. Use it to compose shots when you don’t have your big guns. Then edit those pictures quickly to get a rough idea of how those images would look with the full DSLR and Photoshop treatment.
Check out this tutorial where I edit cell phone pictures with my Galaxy S5:
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