“The best camera is the one that’s with you” ~ Chase Jarvis
I was 12 when I took my first photo with an old manual SLR that my Dad lent me. I remember it was on a Mother’s Day where a local kindergarten where my Mom was the Headmistress organised a street parade. I wasn’t half as bad as it turned out in taking photos, I even made money from the sale of those photos. And that’s the start of my journey in the world of Photography. A journey that continued until a few years back when Analogue made its slow but sure transition to Digital. That’s when I somehow lost interest in taking photos, at least using my SLR (I had a Canon EOS 5 by then).
Then recently I rediscovered my passion with Photography, though this time it’s in different form, I fell in love with Mobile Photography, when I got my first iPhone (iPhone 3G)!
Mind you, it was not like it’s the first time I took photo with a mobile. As a matter of fact, one of the reason why I lost interest was that I acquired the Nokia N95, arguably the best camera phone before the iPhone’s arrival, with which the phrase ‘The best camera is the one with you’ really came into its practical realisation.
Fast forward a few years, with all its limitation, compare to a full-fledged DSLR, an iPhone can take surprisingly a very good photo. That and its obvious ubiquitousness, is really making it ‘the best camera that’s always with me’. I love the fact that I am able to catch the moment around me when ever I want – where ever I want. The limitation of the iPhone itself has actually taught me to be a better photographer, to concentrate on the light, the composition, and basically the actual part of ‘making a picture’ rather than worry about the gear. More over, using the myriad of Photography apps I could get my hands on, I really love that I can instantly edit, correct them, change some things, add a few filters, and then ‘share’ them to the world. After all what’s the use of taking photos if we are not showing them to people, right? There is a feeling of fulfilment there somewhere.
Also in this way, iPhone has democratised Photography, in a sense that you don’t need to own a £5000 photographic gear to catch a moment, or you don’t need to be a Photoshop boffin to change a few colours. Photography suddenly becomes accessible to everybody and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. It levels the playing field, a field that previously the domain of professional photographers.
Don’t get me wrong, all of these won’t guarantee to help you to be an excellent Photographer. To take a really good photo you would still need a good basic knowledge in Photography and more importantly you need experience, lots of it! (oh .. and maybe a little bit of talent).
At this moment the Mobile Photography movement is still in its infancy, but it has been generating a great interest and avid followers among the old-skool Photographers and as a matter of fact among ordinary people (Instagram was a case in point). More and more Exhibitions that take the theme of Mobile Photography are taking place all over the world; talks and even courses on Mobile Photography are organised and appearing everywhere. And last but by no means the least, communities based on people who loves to take photo with their mobile are sprouting like mushroom around the world. These communities have members ranging from a handful to thousands. They organise off-line meetups, photo-walks, talks, discussions and exhibitions.
Businesses have also started to notice the power of these communities whose members more often than not are influencers. Brands see this as a new media for their marketing and advertising campaign. Sometimes a picture does say more than words, especially when that picture is seen by millions of people. The simplicity and immediacy of sharing hold the key in this case, without the ability of sharing our photo ‘instantly’ to practically anybody in anywhere in the world, the photo will be just like our old paper photos gathering dust inside a box somewhere. It is a very powerful medium of spreading ideas.
As you see, this is somewhat a revolution on its own. I don’t honestly know where this will end up, but I know that it’s moving forward and it doesn’t look back. So let’s enjoy the ride.
This blog is about sharing a passion in Mobile Photography and I hope you may enjoy and get something out of it.
About the Author
Chris Prakoso is a Business Analyst, Web Developer, Tech Blogger, Avid iPhoneographer and Social Media Influencer.
Last but not least, Chris also writes a more general Tech topics at his blog Toogeektobetrue.com
You can contact Chris via email at this address: hello[at]moblivious[dot]com.