Roger is a keen photographer, knowing all about lovely cameras and lenses. But, he decided it just didn’t make sense to take a cumbersome SLR camera around the world, to some fairly high-crime areas.
“Of course it would be brilliant to have a Canon or Nikon with me, but using an iPad still allows me to get some great pictures whilst being much more convenient to pack” says Roger. “The iPad camera is excellent (but it would be better to have the iPhone X announced yesterday!), the screen big enough to really examine the image, the picture enhancing software works well, and of course the files are all ready for uploading onto the blog. But I recognise the iPhone or iPad is not for everyone, especially if you need lenses to get close to nature”.
Here are Roger’s technical tips for using the iPhone or iPad as your gap year camera:
- Make getting to the camera quick. Adjust the settings so that, even when locked, a quick left swipe, will bring up the camera.
- Get in the habit of manually focusing. Simply touch the screen at the place you want to be sharp. Also, hold down for a second or two to create depth of field effects on close ups.
- Always adjust the exposure before you take a shot. After setting the focus, drag the sun icon up or down to achieve the right overall exposure.
- On the iPad, accept that you can’t use the zoom too much. If you do, the quality of the final image just isn’t good enough. So see this as a challenge to get closer to subjects. On the latest iPhones you have the advantage of the dual lens.
- Use the panoramic feature to give yourself a wider angle shot. If you hold the iPhone or iPad vertical, and just perform a smallish panorama, you effectively have a lovely wide-angle lens.
- Always consider reframing your images. Invariably, cropping a bit to the 16:9 format that comes with the software makes for a cleaner shot.
And a couple of thoughts about file management:
- Edit as you go along. If you are not ruthless, over the course of the gap year, you will end up with far too many photographs to handle. So, at the end of every day, I tend to have a session deleting duplicate or poor shots.
- Think about back-ups. The great thing about the iPad/iPhone is that if you have an iCloud account, all images are automatically (when on wifi and charging) uploaded as a back-up. But also use a Sandisc connect drive, available from any Apple shop, to get an additional USB back-up which you can post home.
This is one of our occasional tips for middle aged gap year travellers. To see the others, click below on the link – Travel Tips