The smartphone today is definitely not just a phone. It has really become a handheld desktop computer with added features. And when it comes to photographers, it’s a device that they certainly can’t do without. Whether you are an Android user or you have that chick iPhone – the story is same everywhere. No I am not just referring to the smartphone as a device for clicking photos, but utilizing it to achieve a lot more as a photographer.
As a photographer, you can use your phone like your personal photography guide in every segment. There are apps today which would help you from planning a shoot to editing it and sharing across social media platforms.
In this article, we are going to explore just that. We are going to tell you about the must-have apps for photographers.
So what are what the best apps are for photographers in 2018? Let’s find out;
Unless you are a studio photographer, 1weather plays a big part in photography. What if you go out somewhere to shoot seeing a sun blazing above and then it starts raining. It’s kind of a professional hazard that’s best avoided.
And how you can do that? It’s by having a 1weather app in your phone which would provide you with all the weather forecast for the day.
1Weather reports weather forecasts from 3 million locations worldwide at a three hourly interval basis. 1Weather is a free app available on both Android and iOS. Give this a try, you won’t be disappointed.
Another extremely useful weather forecasting app is AccuWeather. It is probably the most popular app in this segment. This app, especially the iOS version, comes with several important features like severe weather warnings.
Both the iOS and an Android version comes with a huge 15-day weather forecast chart which can be a blessing for any outdoor photographer and help them to make and adjust plans well in advance.
3. My Aurora Forecast
Photographing the northern list is a bucket list item for any photographer. Unless you live in areas closer to that, it is definitely going to take a lot of planning to click those magnificent celestial events. What My Aurora Forecast does is it takes out a bit of guesswork out of the way.
It tells you exactly when and where you are likely to see those lights by sending push notifications to your phone. So in a way, it’s not really a weather forecasting app, but a celestial event app.
Editing and Retouching apps:
Editing and retouching is an essential part of photography. Of course, we all know that. But what editing app to use after all? There are several editing and retouching apps out there on both play store and App Store. Now if you are a professional photographer then you are certainly not going to have editing apps meant for selfie-takers in your phone (well you might have them as well).
Here we are going to tell you about some editing apps which all professional photographers use.
I personally don’t know any photographer who doesn’t have Snapseed in his mobile. It is by far the best and most popular photo editing and retouching app out there. The recent update to Snapseed also includes RAW support which has come as a blessing for photographers who like to shoot RAW. It is, undoubtedly, one of the best free apps for photographers today.
Another extremely powerful mobile photo editing app is Facetune. With this app, you can remove blemishes, whiten teeth, reshape faces and even correct red eyes. Yes, you can do these without even opening your Photoshop.
But there’s a catch. Since this app has been designed keeping professionals in mind, it can be a bit daunting to use at first. But once you get the hang of it, it becomes a piece of cake.
3. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC
If you are a photographer, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is most probably the software you use to retouch your photos. But did you know Lightroom has a mobile version too and yes it’s meant for photographers as well. it is another mobile editing app which supports RAW and if you ever need to edit RAW on the go then you can use Lightroom Mobile.
But do keep in mind that RAW files are significantly larger in size compared to JPEGs. So transferring too many RAW files to mobile can shrink the phone’s storage space and also slow it down. So use it carefully.
Location Finding apps:
1. Scene Scout
As I have said earlier, going outdoors is part and parcel of photography and going outdoor means going to a particular location. But how to find the best location for your shoot? How to find locations which haven’t been stepped on before? How to find that hidden gem which can wow your audience? That’s where these location finding apps come in handy.
Scene Scout is an app that lets you not find a location but store it on your mobile and if needed, share it on social media. Many times it happens, that when finding location, you can’t remember a particular place you saw on some website. With Scene Scout you can now store that location for eternity. So you can forget without any worry.
2. The Photographer’s Ephemeris
The Photographer’s Ephemeris (TPE) has been, for a long time, a popular photography planning app. The specialty of this app is that you can pick any location on the planet, put a pin on it on an actual map and see how the sun and the moon will move on that location on any given date.
It is especially useful for travel photographers who are out on a long trip and want to maximize their photographic experience in the places they are going.
Meant to be a one stop shop for photography planning and location scouting, PhotoPills have become extremely popular with photographers across the world. Earlier it was available only for iOS users, but these days it’s available for android users as well.
This app doesn’t just tell you the location of the sun and the moon on any given date over a location, but can also tell you where you can best spot the Milky Way. It uses something called augmented reality to make those predictions. Initially using this app can prove to be a bit difficult, but over time you would get the hang of it.
Geotag Photos Pro
These days many modern DSLRs and mirrorless cameras come with geotagging features. If you use Lightroom for post-processing then the location of the photo is shown on the map and it adds that to the metadata. But if you don’t have a camera with Geotagging option, then the next best thing is to use a Geotagging app.
Geotags Photos Pro is the best in this field and it world real time recording your GPS coordinates as you shoot. It creates a GPX file which you can import to Lightroom and add it to your photo’s metadata.
Photography assistance apps:
1. Pocket Light meter
Light meters used to be an extremely important tool for film photographers, but since the advent of the digital age, its importance has gone down drastically. But it, by no means, is out of fashion. So if you ever feel the need of a light meter then there is no need to go buy one. Just install the Pocket Light Meter app and it does the job exactly like an actual light meter would do.
This app uses your phones camera to judge the lighting condition in your studio and gives you various settings like aperture, ISO and shutter speed.
2. Hyperfocal DOF
Hyperfocal distance is an extremely crucial parameter to keep in mind for landscape photographers. Hyperfocal distance refers to the technique through which you can keep the closest object to the lens in focus while keeping objects till infinity sharp. Hyperfocal distance rule of thumb is that one should focus one-third of their way into the scene, but it doesn’t work all the time. Many times it needs a bit of number crunching.
The easiest way of getting around this number crunching is to have an app installed in your mobile and what better app is there than the Hyperfocal DOF. The app supports more than 1800 camera models. All you have to do is tell it your camera model, aperture and focal length and it will give you the hyperfocal distance.
3. Exposure Calculator and Long Exposure calculator
If you are into taking long exposure shots (where you slow down the shutter speed of the camera and keep the sensor exposed to your object for a longer period) then calculating shutter speed, aperture and ISO can at times becoming hassling.
Worry not. There’s an app there for it too. If you are on android use Exposure Calculator and iOS users may go for Long Exposure Calculator.
4. Posing app
One of the most embarrassing thing you can face as a photographer is to be in the middle of a shoot and then running out of pose to give your subject. The Posing App strives to address this situation.
This app has poses meant for kids as well as adults of every age group – for both males and females. The app is very easy to use and can be quite helpful in those tricky situations.
Photo Sharing apps:
When it comes to photo sharing, the best platform is Instagram. I am not listing Instagram here since I am assuming that everyone knows about it already.
You may not know it, but 500pxcom is the largest community of professional photographers. Here you can not just share your photo, but can also put it up for sale. In the last one year I sold three photos on this platform.
They also have an app which you can have in your mobile and share photos on the go.
Another very well known and much respected platform is Flickr. If you are a professional photographer then having a Flickr account is a MUST.
The Flickr app makes it easy to upload and share photos with other community members and makes your presence visible among other community members.
Other helpful Apps:
Photography equipment – be it camera or lenses – are extremely expensive items and the worst scenario you can face as a photographer is to have your gear stolen. With Lenstag you can keep track of your equipment in case they get stolen.
All you have to do is register you lenses, cameras and other stuffs with Lenstagusing their serial numbers. Serial numbers are needed for proof of ownership. And when they get stolen, a third party can check Lenstag and find out if he is purchasing a stolen item or a genuinely owned product.
So these are all the top apps for professional photographers according to me. Have I missed anything? Do you want me to add something? Do let me know. Also, let me know if there’s any specific topic you want me to write on.