Tags archives: smartphone

Claudius Weson JourneyBalkizz’s Smartphone SymphonyProduct Photography Workshop with Smartphone

Greetings everyone. In this day and age, almost everyone from various walks of life owns a smartphone, owing largely to the benefits it has to offer, including but not limited to; cross-platform messaging apps such as WhatsApp Messenger,; social media such as Facebook, Instagram; video streaming apps such as Youtube, mobile internet browser and many more. There is so much computing power in a single device compared to the first computer introduced by IBM back in 1981, with computing power of 16kb. Even so, with that technology, NASA launched the very first Space Shuttle mission and launched 2 men to space. Therefore, just imagine, with so much power at your hand in a form of smartphone, what are you going to do about it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some might stick to use for basic usages, i.e. texting, calling, social media etc. I always believe that in each and everyone of us, there is an unlimited potentials, like diamond in the rough. Only those who brave it out and put considerable effort onto it will be able to reap the fruit. One of a good example is Balkizz Sulaiman. She is an entrepreneur, a fellow photographer specialised in product photography using smartphone as her main tool of trade and also an advertising coach. (Note: I also have wrote about smartphone photography here. Some of my photos captured using only iPhone 6 is also demonstrated here, though I love to use my Leica camera for all photography purposes, e.g. events, weddings, portraiture and outdoors).

I was honoured to be able to join her final workshop for 2018 at Miri Malay Association building, Sarawak today and started my whole new learnings on product photography that I never ventured before. Since I started this journey last year, I was not doing any product photography at all as I am doing street, events and wedding photography. In general, people’s photography. As I enter building, I empty my cup and open up for new learnings that Balkizz passionately taught us.

 

She started off with the story about herself, where she mentioned that before this she was working with an oil gas company until she realisation hits her. Specifically, at her cubicles, she was surrounded by senior peoples who work day in, and day out; doing the same thing over and over again until retirement. That actually woke her up, and she refused to do the things she has no passion at all about. On 2015, the worst year for oil and gas industry, where oil price hits the lower than $40/bbl by the end of the year. During that time also, many personnel were released from their jobs due. She saw this opportunity to leave, crossed the Rubicon and never looked back ever since.

She started with selling Jamu Tun Teja, but it was not flying high like she expected. Then, she realised something is not right. That is when she understands the power of photography to boost her sales. But, due to physical limitation, she cannot use a big camera like those of DSLRs and others, although she was using it when she starts photography. Therefore, she opts to use smartphone to create an appealing images. Smartphone photography is the best tool for these small business owners as it is the most versatile. She is determined to empower small business owners, particularly women who runs online business, because she understands their challenges to manage work, family as well as online business. Using smartphone is also for practicality as well since not all of these women owns a DSLR. In terms of learning curve, using smartphone camera is much easier to use compared to any other professional camera. She even went on to learn with professional Instagrammers and social media sifus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During this workshop, which is also participated by a participant from Brunei, she also gave an awareness to the participants the basic stuff, including cleanliness of the smartphone camera lens, basics in smartphone camera operations, software/apps to use (in this course, we use Snapseed) and image composition rules. Finally, it is time for practical session, where the rules mentioned before are made to be broken.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I find it interesting as many of the participants has their own creative sides, that was demonstrated during the practical session. The practical session lasted for an hour, to which we end with Q&A and finally group photo. As a wrap, this workshop it highly recommended to everyone who wish to learn more about product photography at an affordable price, especially if you are a woman doing online business. Even though I am doing freelance photography, there is a lot of learnings that I made from the workshop with Balkizz today, where the most important one is, follow your passion. Do the things that you are passionate about. For married couples, please do support your spouse, especially if he or she has a dream that she wants to achieve. In a way, that will make your bond stronger, and in return, you will have a better relationship. We rise not by putting others down, but by raising others up. That’s how we achieve excellence.

That’s all for now. Have a good weekend with your family and friends. Remember, immortalise your memories.

     

Another Story of The DayBut I Don’t Have A Camera. So How? Part 1How To Start Your Photography Journey Without Camera

Luconia Sunset. Sunsets tend to be more beautiful when you go offshore. (iPhone only)

 

Sounds familiar, right? This is a common question that I believe many of photographers out there hear every now and then.

Sabahan Mother missing her family and her son. (iPhone)

Not to mention that there is a lot also did not pursue their passion for photography because they believe that they do not have the gear. To answer this once and for all, the best camera is the camera that is with you, a quote by Chase Jarvis. He actually wrote a book about this, and you may refer to the link.

In this post, it would be about me, doing photography using my iPhone alone. I am only using iPhone because that is the phone that I have been using for the past 4 years. I don’t plan to upgrade because it is still good and it is stil can be used until this day. For some serious photography, I only need to use my Leica cameras.

Why Mobile Phone Photography?

 

It is convenient. You cannot deny that fact. Just find the camera apps and off you go.

Perdana Protector (iPhone 6 Plus)

You have it with you all the time. Even though the quality differs from one model to another, but most of the model is getting better and better. Samsung recently released a new phone, A9 with 4 cameras. The competition is getting stiffer, and I am interested to see where the race is heading.

Regardless, despite the fancy accessories that these modern smartphone cameras have, the good news, it would be sooner than you expected that we are going to get an affordable technology for a smartphone. So that is a good place for you to start.

For me, since I am still using the old smartphone, the quality is good in good light. However, problem comes when there not enough light. I will be haunted by noises. Noise, noise and more noise. Sensor noise is the thing that you don’t want to have at your camera. It is the grainy items at you get to see at your camera.

Mister USA (iPhone 6 Plus)

Also, the quality that you will get when you zoom into your camera is not the best. It is not the one that you will have when you use a dedicated zoom lenses. It is kind of frustrating, but when that is the only one that you have, you have to live with it.

Anyway, my advise on smart phone photography is to find a good light and find a good composition.

For basic phones, you have no choice but to rely on COMPOSITION. In simple word, composition is the arrangement of the stuff that is inside your final image. In drawing, you can draw it. But in photography, you can move it around before you snap it. In street photography, it is much more complicated, you have to find the right moment, and be at the right place at the right time.

In a nutshell, a composition is the story that you want to tell using your image. If you want to make a portrait of someone using an older generation smartphone, try to distance up a bit. Otherwise, close-up using a smartphone’s wide angle will make someone’s face look distorted and it is not flattering.

FCB JJ – Once Upon a Time in the 60s. I can time travel. Trust me, I am an engineer. lol (iPhone)

Otherwise, you can always try to experiment around your smartphone. Once you have taken the photos, try to do a bit of touch-up using it. For my phone, I use Lightroom Mobile, although when I want a quick result, I just use iPhone’s image editing apps. I cannot comment for other smartphone because I have no experience handling it. However, you are most welcomed to try.

As a summary, for general consumption, smartphone photography is good enough, especially if you are a mobile person, or love Instagram to run your business. Even Baldkizz Sulaiman uses smartphone to run her 5-figure business. Just get a photo with good composition, and you are good to go.

Happy experimenting!

One of the old shots I took. I love the mood here. So serene. Things tend to be more beautiful after 12 hours working. (iPhone)

Another Sunset. I love this shot! (iPhone)

F28 from FCB (iPhone)

Another day at workplace, not for the seasick peoples. (iPhone)