Those darn camera phones!


In the spirit of technology topics, being that this week is the annual CES gathering (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas, I wanted to touch on cameras on phones. As most of you are aware, this is fast becoming one of the most competitive areas in the mobile arena, let alone the photography arena!

Top tier phones today have cameras that rival DSLRs from just a few years ago. Just do a Google search for ‘Smartphone vs. DSLR’, you will find a ton of review and opinions. You will undoubtedly read about the Nokia 1020 which is the current Smartphone king with a 41MP (no, that is not a typo – Fourty One.) camera and the ability to shoot RAW! Wow! Don’t get me wrong, this is not a DSLR/camera phone comparison or debate, rather I am just pointing out how good cameras are on phones now-a-days. Smartphones are still a ways off from realistically replacing the need for a full-time, purpose-built camera – which may never actually happen for the serious shooter. I for one, am happy all of this technology is moving forward because it will drive the DSLR market to innovate in hopes to keep their market share….and it helps make Instagram feeds a bit more interesting ;).

I took this photo below with a now 2-3 generation old phone in early 2011, the Motorola Atrix 4G. I got to be honest, I really like this photo! If I had taken this with my Nikon D7000, I would have been happy! At the time this was taken, I did not own a DSLR and this phone was my window into photography. It peaked my interest so much that I ended up doing my research and buying the DSLR I own today. I am happy this camera drove me to take better pictures and rewarded me when I was able to achieve that goal! It moved me along on my Photography journey.

With this week’s CES phone processor announcements and the Mobile World Congress around the corner, things are only going to get WAY more interesting! Don’t forget, which I do often, that cameras don’t make engaging images, people do.

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Color in a Decaying World


While visiting my family for Thanksgiving, I told my dad I wanted to go shoot some pictures and then asked if he had any recommendations on locations. I told him I was looking for some sort of abandoned, old “something”. He said he knew just the place and so we set out into the country. We arrived at an abandoned feed mill. This place used to provide food for the many different cow farms in the valley where they live (and I grew up). Perfect!

Much to my surprise, this abandoned mill had been turned into a graffiti artist’s canvas. Graffiti was everywhere! What immediately jumped out at me was the amount of detailed/grand pieces amongst the random yammerings of the local gangs. They were so colorful and well done in this old and decaying environment that I had to take these photos. An interesting thing to point out is that this is not a place that people go to. This is out in the sticks of a small town. These were done purely for limited viewing and appreciation. By the way, I have a few more photos coming that play on the mill environment, seperate from the graffiti; I will put those up in another post.

 

I am not sure what this stands for, but the creator put a lot of time and color into this one. It stood out like….a color painting on an old oat mill wall…

 

Spatula? In any case, this had a great presence.

I intentionally ‘colored’ in this photo below sloppily to somewhat mimic the graffiti style. The color is what was there, I did not add any color. The surroundings in this room were so decayed up against this color that I had to dramatize this fact by greying out everything but the color.

Graffiti Rainbow!

This wall had also been attacked by local paintballers. This just added to the color in the grim environment.