My favourite iPhone photography apps

Hot on the heels of my chapter about iphone photography in lomokev’s new photo project book, and inspired by Heather’s list of apps (and my [not so] recent upgrade to an iPhone 4) here is my list of favourite iPhone photography apps, with some examples of each in action…

I’ve tried a number of photography apps over the past three years of iPhone usage, but these three have come to be my stalwart accomplices. Crucially, they all allow me to be creative, and enhance my existing creativity, without getting in the way and making something which I don’t recognise as “my” work. I formula for a good photography app is: my skills + app = better result. So in an app I tend to be looking for something which doesn’t take over.

1. Autostitch

Unlike other panorama apps (like PhotoStitch for desktop, and the original version of Pano) which only allow you to construct a panorama from horizontally-connected image (perfect for panning around a horizon), Autostitch lets – no, encourages you to get creative with multiple overlapping images, in any direction at all. This can lead to some interesting – and sometimes quite unintended – effects.

Summer house garden


I still boggle that this amount of intricate and elaborate processing power is packed into a tiny app on my phone. And available to anyone for less than $3. We truly live in the future.

2. Camerabag

I’m not crazy about apps that only exist to add retro effects to images, but there’s something about Camerabag’s filter settings that seem to be able to turn a lacklustre image into a much more rich and interesting one.

It’s telling that of the twelve filters available, I only use two with any regularity: Helga (which mimics Holga contrast & vignetting) and Magazine (which seems to flatten and punch things)


Proper Breton-like cider

FWIW, I’ve also played with Hipstamatic and can see the appeal, but I’m not wild about it. For me, the fun is somewhat limited by the fact you have to take images through it, rather than being able to use it for post-processing, as well (as you can with Camerabag)

3. Diptych

Relatively new, this one allows you to quite simply combine multiple images according to a number of templates. Bosh.


I don’t use this one a lot, but it’s handy to have on the phone when I do (and a damned sight easier than downloading, opening and editing in photoshop).

Playing with Diptych

I’d love to know which photography apps you use, and rate….

5 thoughts on “My favourite iPhone photography apps

  1. I’m a Hipstamatic addict, which I do admit is goofy and a bit, fake, for lack of a better word. I just love the Holga lense and I love that you can change film and flash, as well.

  2. With a bit less choice on our side of the app fence, Vignette is the only worthwhile one I’ve seen for Android. Halfway between Camerabag and Hipstamatic.

  3. Well presented, thanks.

    Yes, the future is here and now, right in our pockets. I use two of the three apps you mention here. I’ll be looking at Diptych after I post this comment.

    I use Perfectly Clear all the time to make the “raw” iPhone 3GS pictures “pop”. It saves all that clumsy fiddling with touch screen sliders for levels and saturation at a stroke.

    Photogene is my pocket “mini-Photoshop”. It gives me everything I need for my iPhone photo blog. The straightening (rotating) is exceptional.

    Here’s an example of what PhotoStudio can do:

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