Mastin Labs

5 best mobile photo-editing apps

1. VSCO

If you haven't heard of Visual Supply Co. (VSCO), you might be living under a rock. In case, you don't know, VSCO is basically apply filter, adjust, and your done. You can post your image to your wall or profile for the world to see. However, it is not as big of a social media platform as Facebook or Instagram. I use this app whenever I want to get a certain look as they have some good filters and some are even free to download.

VSCO features many filters as well as normal editing tools

VSCO features many filters as well as normal editing tools

2. Filmborn

Filmborn is a fairly new app compared to the ones listed in this article. Filmborn was created by the talented people at Mastin Labs. Mastin Labs is a company that makes presets that are very close to replicating film stocks. The film stocks in the app currently are Fuji, Ilford, and Kodak featuring the most popular stocks by each company. I mostly use this app for black and white as I love the look of HP5.

Filmborn includes many popular film stocks such as Kodak Portra and Ilford Delta 3200.

Filmborn includes many popular film stocks such as Kodak Portra and Ilford Delta 3200.

3. Squaready

I feel like not a lot of people have heard of Squaready. If you have been on Instagram for a couple years now, you will know Instagram used to crop every photo that you post. Now, horizontal photos are able to shown at full size whereas vertical photos are still cropped. If you haven't guessed it by now Squaready enables you to add a color border to your vertical photos or any orientation photo. Thus, allowing you to fit the entire photo without crop. You can also create a border on any of the edges. “How do those photographers get that nice white border around their photos?” Now, you know!

Squaready allows you to not crop vertical photos in Instagram.

Squaready allows you to not crop vertical photos in Instagram.

4. Snapseed

Created by Nik Software, a subsidiary of Google, is a photo editing app that has some tools that are not usually found in mobile photo editing apps. Those tools include brush, healing, curves, and text. Most of these features are only offered in paid computer photo editing software such as Photoshop. The one tool I use the most is selective adjustment. On the go, I am able to selective adjust photos that may need darkened or lightened in certain parts of the photo.

Snapseed's selective adjustment tools allows you to switch between brightness, contrast, saturation, or structure by swiping up or down. 

Snapseed's selective adjustment tools allows you to switch between brightness, contrast, saturation, or structure by swiping up or down. 

5. Lightroom Mobile

Some people may not be able to use this app as you need a Adobe Creative Cloud account to use this app. However, if you do already have Lightroom and/or Photoshop, download Lightroom mobile for on the go editing. Apple within the past year have allowed iPhones to shoot in RAW. The standard camera app does not allow you to shoot in RAW though. Lightroom mobile allows you to shoot in RAW (DNG) and control most of your exposure setting such as ISO, shutter speed, and exposure compensation. Allowing you to get the most out of your photos. 

Lightroom mobile allows you to shoot in DNG and adjust exposure comp, shutter speed, ISO, and white balance all before you take the photo.

Lightroom mobile allows you to shoot in DNG and adjust exposure comp, shutter speed, ISO, and white balance all before you take the photo.

If you enjoyed this article like, comment, and share!

(Update) Switching from Photoshop to Lightroom

Image courtesy of Digital Photography School.

Image courtesy of Digital Photography School.

A couple weeks ago, I wrote an article on how I would be switching from Photoshop to Lightroom. I stated in this article that I hoped to achieved three things with switching from Photoshop to Lightroom. After using Lightroom for a couple of weeks, I can say my hopes have come true.

  1. A faster workflow, indeed.

    When I was using Photoshop, I would have to open each image, adjust the raw file, make other adjustments, save the PSD, and then save a JPEG. Obviously, this involved a lot of steps as well as time. I dreaded editing photos because I knew it would be long and tedious. 

    Since using Lightroom, the steps and time have been drastically cut down. When you import photos into Lightroom, you have quite a few options. Copying the files off the SD card while retaining the files on the card or moving files from one hard drive to another. What Lightroom has does best is that it enables the imported Lightroom files to save all adjustments even if you move the files to a new hard drive. However, the files transferred must be transferred through Lightroom (to save the adjustments).

    Once the files have been imported, I am able to browse through the photos and flag/rate the photos I like. From there, I am able to adjust a photo and move right on to the next. But the best part comes at exporting. Since Lightroom saves all the adjustments in the program itself, I don't have to save the “raw” file, instead I can just export to the file type and size I need. This has been a God send. 

2. Presets, Presets, Presets. 

    When dealing with presets, Lightroom is and has been quite a bit easier than Photoshop.  I knew when I first got Lightroom I wanted to use presets. Not because I am lazy, but because it provides a starting ground. Presets are actually used as a starting ground rather than slap it on and that’s it. In Lightroom, using presets are super easy. Even installing them is super easy.

    Before purchasing any presets, I researched quite a bit. I look at numerous companies such as Mastin Labs, Totally Rad, and VSCO. I decided on VSCO. I wanted presets that simulated legendary film stocks like Portra. VSCO was at a good price point and was widely used among other photographers. 

    After using the presets, I have noticed a bump in my photos. This is not due to the preset look but it provides me with a look that I want and I can build off it. Not only has this improved my workflow but also my editing skills.

3. Better editing skills?

    While writing this, my mind might have changed. How is a editing program going to improve my editing skills? After some thought I realized that it does not necessarily work like that. A photo editing program will not make someone a photographer overnight. But it allows you to become a better photographer/editor. 

    Photoshop and Lightroom are just tools to a photographer/editor just like a camera is a tool. Everyone has access to these tools but it does not make a everyone a photographer. It all depends on how one uses these tools. These tools allow me to adjust and improve my photos. I am able to cut down time, apply a look, and adjust the look to fit my style. 

If you enjoyed this article, like, comment, and share!