The anatomy of a memorable photo – What works for me.

Everything starts with a goal and so does this post. If you are looking to document your trip, then just jump in, point your camera, get one of those shots everyone else has, pack your bags and call it a day.

However, if you looking for something different, you’ll need to do a little more.

Like a computer programmer is taught to start with an algorithm, A photo needs to start with some planning. This becomes vital when you are shooting a cityscape. While people have various techniques, here is what I do and it works for me.

Before heading to any new destination, I start by scouting the location. The first of which is looking for photos. With a combination of Google images and flickr, I have a rough idea on the types of photos you can get at the location. Sometimes, I supplement this by looking at the map, even the satellite images of the place, which gives me an approximate idea of what is in store.

Armed with this information, I gather any additional information I might need. Things like the weather (for clothing and my shots) , timing of when the place is open, additional resources that I might need to get to / around the location and specific rules that might apply (some places do not allow tripod’s / bags, neither do they have places to store them, parking etc.).

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The iPhone camera is finally useful.

bbrgApple took cellphones to the next level with the iPhone. Tom, Dick, Harry and my grand mother have one and they created a great revenue generation scheme with their apps. One of the parts where they screwed up was with the camera.

If you are one of the few people, who does not own one, a google search will tell you about how bad the camera is, so I’m not getting into the details.

To give you a rough idea, I’ve always found myself in the “Never edit a photo” crowd. I took pride in composing “good” photos and sticking to that. There have been times, when I’ve cropped pictures and played with the RGB settings, but they were rare.

All this changed when I had a bad camera on the iPhone.

Over the course of the past few months, I’ve managed to play with a few free photo editing apps for the iPhone. Darkroom, ArtCam Lite iEasy Photo Lite, PS Mobile and Best Camera. It’s true that all those apps, save Best Camera, are free, but I find myself going back to Best Camera over and over again.

The reason I’ve noticed is a) the ease of use. The filters are easy to apply, easy to access and there are just enough filters to not get lost. It’s an iphone and Best Camera keeps it simple.

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