3 January 2013
Experimenting with Retro Camera's Barbl Camera
Hello, blog friends, and Happy New Year to all of you! Here's hoping 2013 will be happy and healthy and full of pleasant surprises, photographic or otherwise.
I was hoping to finish the old year with a bit of a retrospective, but two things conspired to keep me from doing so: (1) I had an important 1 January deadline, and (2) I got sucked into the unholy vortex that is Instagram. Between the two, I didn't get round to doing a lot of the things I'd planned for the last few months of the year, including spending more time here, but that's OK. The main thing is that I submitted my assignment on time and that I'm fairly pleased with the work I did. Hopefully, my client will be satisfied enough to send more assignments my way...
The new year has got off to a somewhat frustrating start for me, photographically speaking, in that I missed out on both of the magnificent sunsets we've had so far, due to being completely in the wrong spot at the time. To add insult to injury, on the two occasions I made the long trek to a photogenic spot for some serious sunset photography, the sunsets were utterly dire. Here's hoping the weekend's photography excursions will be blessed with more colourful skies...
I've done a little experimenting over the last few days. I've bought several phone camera apps lately, and I'm slowly working my way through the functions they offer. Mainly, I've been trying new Hipstamatic lenses and films (more on that in a separate post), but I also bought an app called Retro Camera, which offers six different cameras, each with a distinctive style, colour scheme and border. Some of the cameras produce Polaroid-style photos, while others mimic the effects of pinhole and Holga cameras, replete with funky colours, scratches, vignettes, etc. There's even a camera that adds sprockets to your photos!
So far, the only Retro Camera camera I've tried is the Bärbl, which is meant to mimic the effects of a 1950s East German camera. It strongly desaturates shots. The stronger your silhouette, the less colour your photo will have.
All the pictures in this post were taken with the Bärbl camera. I'm quite pleased with the results. I'd say this is a decent camera to use when your subject has strong lines, but less so if you're photographing less distinct subjects.
The only thing I don't like about Retro Camera, so far, is the output resolution. All the pictures come out at 512 x 512px, at 72ppi. That's OK for snapshots, but you really don't want to be taking any important photos with this app. Stick to Hipstamatic or Camera Plus for that. Or your SLR, obviously.
I look forward to checking out the five other Retro Camera cameras. I suspect I'll be doing a lot of iPhone photography over the next few weeks... and a lot of regular photography, too, for that matter. I have a few sunset and sunrise long-exposure shoots on the coast lined up...
Wellington Point / Brisbane, Australia, 2013
iPhone + Retro Camera + Bärbl camera