Us aspiring photographers no longer need to spend thousands of dollars on expensive equipment to take a great landscape or portrait shot. Nowadays, most new smartphones come with cameras that are more than up for the job. Of course, there are some ways in which a phone just can’t compare to a DSLR. But for the most part, they’re a great alternative, especially if you’re just starting out. Here are a few of our favorite apps that will take your phone shots to the next level.
Lightroom for Mobile
Lightroom’s mobile app is one of my favorite apps for editing landscape shots whether they’re city pics or action shots captured halfway up a mountain. If I’m in a hurry too, I’ve even synced my DSLR to my phone and used this app to edit shots quickly on the go. It has a lot of features and the only thing that isn’t quite up to par with the desktop app is the ability to isolate and edit particular colors. Other than that, though, it’s a great tool and if you already have lightroom you can access it as part of your plan. If not, you can purchase the mobile-only subscription for Lightroom through the Play Store.
Photoshop Express is a great, free version of the popular Adobe software that’s normally available for your PC or laptop. It offers an array of features, though only lets you edit JPEG files up to 16MP according to Tech Radar, which may be an issue if you have some of the newer phones like the S20 or OnePlus 7 or 8. You can choose preset templates or edit things manually, though I feel light the Lightroom App can be more user friendly for those manual touch-ups
Snapseed has been around for quite some time now and has a lot of features that would normally be difficult to use if you were on the desktop version of photoshop or lightroom, for example. You can use presets, adjust all the usual color, brightness, and sharpness settings and there’s also a really effective curve editing option, too. It’s also completely free making it a strong Lightroom competitor, especially if you want to save a few bucks a month. You can edit RAW files with Snapseed – an upgrade from what Photoshop Express offers.
VSCO is a great app if you’re looking for some go-to filters for your photography and is the app of choice for the creators of thegoodestate.com. A spokesperson for their company, Mary Wilson is an advocate of the features of VSCO. “The app allows users to stay consistent with their editing endeavors, making it perfect for bloggers and those who use Instagram as a marketing platform,” she said in a statement. “The filters can really allow the colors of photos to pop ad features like X Skew allow users to distort the X angle of images giving viewers a unique perspective on your shots”, she continued.