iPhone Photography Awards Showcase Best Photos of 2015

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 15, 2015.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Photos from the winners of the eighth annual iPhone Photography Awards have been posted on the IPPA website, offering a look at some of the best pictures captured with an iPhone over the course of the past year.

    As in previous years, the photos feature a range of different subjects, from people to landscapes to animals. This year's first place photo, by Michal Koralewski from Poland, depicts a man playing traditional Polish songs on an accordion.

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    The second place photo is an impressively clear image of a bird in flight, while the third place winner features a couple on a train. According to the contest, all photos were taken with an iPhone, and photo editing with apps like Instagram and VSCO was permitted.

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    Along with the top three winners, IPPA also chooses winning photographs from several different categories, including animals, architecture, children, flowers, food, landscapes, nature, panorama, and more. The image below, taken in Cairo, took the top slot in the "Travel" category.

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    Apple's iPhone 6, iPhone 5s, and iPhone 5 continue to rank as the three most popular cameras on photo sharing site Flickr, which is no surprise given the quality of the images that can be captured with the phones. Apple continually improves the picture quality in its iPhones, and rumors have suggested that the upcoming iPhone 6s could include the biggest camera jump yet.

    Photos from all of the winners of the 2015 iPhone Photography Awards can be found on the IPPA website. The site is also now accepting entries for the 2016 awards.

    Article Link: iPhone Photography Awards Showcase Best Photos of 2015
     
  2. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

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    #2
    Not that there aren't way better cameraphones in the market (e.g., Lumia 930).
     
  3. AngerDanger macrumors 68040

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  4. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    I don't like to belittle (in general) photos done by other people but have to agree with AngerDanger on this one - "quite unimpressive."

    I do like the iphone camera for quickie photos or documentation. I had to catch a fast photo of a drain pipe problem at my last apartment and the phone was "good enough." I consider it the digital version of the old snapshot film cameras with the 110 and 126 Kodak style cartridges of film.
     
  5. FieldingMellish Suspended

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    I shot a photo of a battery that I had to go buy for my car keys. All I did is bring the phone to the store instead of keeping track of the battery in a pocket.
     
  6. Dekema2 macrumors 6502a

    Dekema2

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    #6
    I have experienced the power of iPhone for about five years now, and at almost 19 I see the value in DSLR and mirrorless digital cameras. As of June 15, 2015, the sensors and lenses in these cameras are extremely superior to that of camera phones. Be that as it may, if I don't have a camera like that and need to capture an image in a split second, I would never want to have to dig for one of those monsters; I would rather whip out my iPhone. At least it's not a potato.
     
  7. nostaws macrumors 6502

    nostaws

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    That black and white shot of the guy and the accordion is cool. Those other two kind of stink. If you go to the web site to view all the photos in all the categories, there is some pretty good stuff. Lots of stuff way better than the birds, and the Cairo shot. Surprised those took second overall and first in travel.

    As for the shot of the birds and Cairo, a DSLR probably wouldn't have taken that much of a better shot than the iPhone in those lighting conditions and for those photos.
     
  8. mpavilion macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    A dumb question (please don't flame me) -- for those "Shot With iPhone 6" billboards, how do they blow up an iPhone image to that giant size and still make it look good, despite the relatively low resolution of the original photo?
     
  9. jponce97 macrumors member

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    I never thought of that until you posted it just now.
    Anyone have any ideas as to how Apple accomplishes that?
     
  10. TheFlash80 macrumors newbie

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    Scaling in tiny increments of 5% or lower with a certain kind of algorithm in Photoshop (bicubic?) many times over will result in an image that still looks very good. I used to scale images from my 5 megapixel Nikon D50 to 50 megapixels and its was still very clear. When you factor in the size of a billboard with the viewing distance, it's possible.
     
  11. teslo macrumors 6502a

    teslo

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    i'd imagine converting it to vector in a program like illustrator with a bit of retouching/adjustments wouldn't look too bad either - the aliasing causes the vector 'tracing' to be blobby/natural looking rather than right-angled pixels.. has anyone ever seen these giant billboards up close? may not even be as detailed as you'd think from 50 yards off.
     
  12. SeaFox macrumors 68030

    SeaFox

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    What's unimpressive is allowing filtering software in a photography competition. Are we supposed to be judging the photographer's picture-taking abilities, or their ability to make their pictures more interesting by enhancing contrast, boosting color saturation, or adding a color cast to enhance the landscape they took?
     
  13. peterh988 macrumors 6502a

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    The main thing is viewing distance. You're usually looking at it from a long way away, so it doesn't need to be that sharp, and isn't when you get close up. Billboards are printed at only something around 25dpi as well.

    There's a calculation you can do to find the optimum viewing distance, it's something to do with the diagonal of the image, never used it!

    (This is all the stuff they taught me at college 25+ years ago so it may have changed!)
     
  14. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

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    Many contests allow you to "post-process" your submissions. Outdoor Photography and Popular Photography to name two well known magazines that do.
     
  15. simonmet macrumors 68000

    simonmet

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    How close do you get to the billboard? I'm guessing not very because I've seen the billboards myself. At the distance you're viewing it the image has "apparent sharpness" because you're so far away you can't notice the lack of fine detail. Get anywhere near close to it and you'll see how little detail there is.

    It's a visual trick but it follows similar principles to Apple's "retina" marketing. That is at certain distances individual pixels disappear and so there's no point putting (much) more in when you can't perceive them. If your iPad had four times as many pixels I guarantee you won't be able to tell the difference when viewed from 2 metres away. That's the principle at play.

    Having said that I wouldn't be surprised if Apple used some additional tricks like super-sampling interpolators and/or vectorisation as mentioned by some of the earlier posts.
     
  16. simonmet macrumors 68000

    simonmet

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    This is the ongoing debate in photography...what is an acceptable level of post-processing. The same thing happens in more prestigious photography competitions too. There was a huge controversy about one of the World Press Photo competition winners a few years ago.

    Supporters of post-production argue that it's not much different to using analogue filters or customising the development procedure to enhance or minimise certain traits such as highlights and shadows or colour reproduction. There was always a great deal of flexibility in the days of film be it film types with different properties, cross processing or even double exposure just to name a few.

    I'm inclined to accept the fact that digital enhancement is just something that will always exist in modern photography, however I also strongly believe that capturing the best possible image in the first instance will always produce the best results and that you can't really fake a good picture in post.
     
  17. 2010mini macrumors 68040

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    Kodak 126...??? Your age is showing lol
     
  18. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    I actually had a Kodak Instamatic 101 and 104. I still have one of them plus a "flashcube" attached. This was my first camera as a young kid.
     
  19. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    You're looking at a billboard from ~ 30 feet away. So to your eye, it's about the same as looking at a 3"x5" photo from 3 feet away. If you looked at that giant billboard from 3 feet away, it wouldn't look very good.
     
  20. mpavilion macrumors 6502a

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  21. TheFlash80 macrumors newbie

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    I'd say it's fair to allow some enhancements as long as they are tasteful (but I don't agree with fake color casts). You can do some of the same things with film photography and this is just the digital equivalent of those chemicals and tools. Besides, all of these pictures have good composition and if you were to take the filtering out of them, they would still be good pictures in that aspect.
     
  22. dumastudetto macrumors 68030

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    iPhone is the best camera most people will ever own. When you see amazing results like those showcased here, it should hopefully inspire a whole new generation of photographers to create incredible works we can all enjoy.
     
  23. MonkeySee.... macrumors 68040

    MonkeySee....

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    The bird one is an excellent shot. Love the moody dark one too.

    Just appreciate the picture and stop thinking about it too much. :rolleyes:
     
  24. macduke macrumors G3

    macduke

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    I think it's judging the whole thing because photography isn't just about what gets spit out of the camera. I'm an actual photographer who went to school for it and had to learn the history. When translated from Greek roots, the word photography literally means "drawing with light." I prefer to call it painting with light. So it bugs me when people get upset about processing an image. Especially since this is clearly a fine art competition.

    Yes there are filter presets, but those are no different than choosing different types of film back in the day, or adjusting the filters on your enlarger. And many photographers shy away from the presets and adjust the values on their own. Are you aware that when printing a film-based photograph, you must project it through a series of cyan, magenta and yellow filters on the enlarger? It's up to the photographer what those filter settings are. The word filter in digital photography literally comes straight from film and these filters have been used for over a hundred years. Even in black and white you use the same filters to create contrast in your image. You also punch a hole in a piece of paper to make a burning tool and tape a round piece of paper to a wire to make a dodging tool to make local adjustments to your image. All of these techniques have been used forever. Heck, many photographers would even put filters on the lens while shooting. Even HDR could be somewhat faked using a graduated neutral density filter or by simply burning in the sky. Or you can use a polarizing filter which completely changes the way most water looks and could be considered extreme manipulation if you were to compare before and after. Even "photoshopping" has been around for over a hundred years. Check out this article on FourAndSix.com for an interesting gallery of faked images throughout history: http://www.fourandsix.com/photo-tampering-history/.

    Furthermore people don't realize that digital cameras always do some processing to an image before it gets written to the card. There is software in digital cameras that adjusts the saturation, contrast, noise reduction, color balance, etc and even compressing to JPG throws away certain bits of information and alters things—which is why it's best to shoot RAW which gives you the most flexibility later on.

    For me personally photography is usually about telling a story, and the story I typically try to tell is how the thing I am photographing made me feel. It's up to each photographer how they convey their work and it's up to each viewer to form an opinion. If you don't like processed photos that's fine (for instance I get annoyed by HDR images that go way too far), but it's not some new thing and even images that you think might not be processed probably are. One of the reasons the iPhone camera is so much better than many Android cameras is because Apple has better processing software for the RAW sensor data.

    Glad someone else gets it. Only thing I want to add is that your example was the incident with the press photo competition. Press photography is held to a different standard because of the ethics of the press needing to present the absolute truth as much as humanly possible. We straddle a fine line between fine art and press photos where I work because we do mixed story types and other content. Sometimes it's just about having a gorgeous photo to accompany a story and that doesn't really impact what the story is about, but other times we can't do much for scientific reasons or what have you. Other times we do ads and so we Photoshop the crap out of an image to remove distractions, make room for copy and make it as eye-catching and appealing as possible.
     
  25. Even Longer, Jun 16, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2015

    Even Longer macrumors 6502

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