I love Camera-Phones


I was sitting at a coffee shop as I often do these days;  the people-watching, coffee-drinking, no-house-work-doing environment helps me stay focused.  The sixty-some-year-old couple was sitting at a table opposite mine, just barely in earshot and directly in my line of sight.

He held up his flip phone and pointed it across the table toward her, a running monologue crooning her praises as he waited for the perfect moment to take her photo.

 “Smile honey…. take your time…beautiful. So beautiful! Perfect! O, you’re beautiful!”

He clicked through the photos, reviewing his handiwork, she giggled as demurely as any giggle I’ve ever seen, and then they returned to finishing their mochas.

In that blissful moment, full of mature love and sweet compliments,  I was freshly reminded just why I love camera-phones for the plethora of photographable moments that fill our lives.  Even as I scroll through the memories housed on my cell phone, I realize just how deeply, keenly, fully I embrace the joys of a camera-phone.

Yes, I am a professional photographer and, yes, I love camera-phones. 

1.  Camera-phones are always accessible.

Tell me any two hours in the past week that you have been without your cell phone.   Maybe you’ve made sure not to sleep with it nearby, but sleeping doesn’t count.  If you are like me and relish the security blanket and  having family and friends a mere phone call away at a moment’s notice, you probably always have your phone on you.
I can’t lug around my camera gear around with me all the time (imagine the size of that purse!), but I can still enjoy the frozen-in-time memories from the golden reservoir of my cell phone.  It’s always with me, so I can always document my life.

2.  Photos are easily shareable.

I live 4,600km from my family (and up to 14,023km from my various nomadic friends).  Camera-phone technology brings their world to me and takes my world to them.  We photograph everything to share — outfits for approval go to my dear friends, cute-kitten-moments head to my sister, snow fall comparisons swap back and forth with my parents.  Whether using data on-the-go or WiFi as possible or synced to computer and then emailed, camera-phones shrink the distance.  And it’s a wonderful, marvelous, spectacular reality.


3. Camera technology isn’t what it used to be.

My family started on a Hewlett Packard Digital Camera, circa 2001, that hardly took photos…and definitely didn’t take quality images.  In those first years of digital camera ownership, I would still grab the film camera rather than face the frustrations of the digital option. It was painful.  (And I don’t think any of those first photographs still exist.) But think about it:  that (expensive) camera had probably a fifth of the capability of my current camera phone (a Nexus 4).   I’m carrying around a wealth of technology in the palm of my hand that creates a blissful camera-carrying experience.

4. Camera-phones can improve productivity.

Have you considered the variety of ways that a camera-phone has made (or can make) your life easier?
  • Take photographs while you’re shopping, to remember what you need to go back and make a final decision on, or to immediately add to a “Christmas Shopping List” folder for browsing later.
  • While you’re at home, photograph what needs replacing so you don’t forget the brand, the size, the specifications. (When I stand in the stor, I can never remember what kitty litter or cat food we don’t mind the smelling for a couple months, so I reference the stored photo in my phone.)
  • Instead of keeping every receipt, photograph the important ones for electronic storage — tax season becomes a breeze!  (I have been known to photograph other important documents, too, for easy archive and reference.)
  • Take a quick photo at the bookstore to remember the title you want to download to Kindle.
  • Photograph outfits and color combinations and new shoe purchase for easy approval by bestfriend/sisterfriend.
As a professional photographer, the plethora of digital cameras can be a challenge to my profession (have you seen the wedding recently shot exclusively on a cell phone??) but I love the technology that allows for a constantly-accessible camera without carrying around 40 pounds of gear. =)

Note:  All photographs in this post are taking with my LG Nexus 4, by Google, and processed via the in-camera App.

This month, I’ll be exploring more fully how to take the best possible photos on your iPhone/Droid/Blackberry camera-phone. Coming in the next weeks:  travel photography on your phone, documenting your life (and your kids’ lives!) on a cell phone, and an helpful guest post specifically focusing on iPhone photography!

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    1. I actually just used an in-camera Droid app on these — I dabbled with Photoshop Express a bit, but the latest software update on my Droid provided some pretty intense editing options. I’ll be reviewing some editing apps later this month, too! More then! =)

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