Can I Have a Map with That Photo?

Every now and then it would be interesting to have a map added to a photo. I have a feeling there are a number of apps that can do this but I’d never really tried one. I saw a new one mentioned on Cult of Mac the other day so I tried it out.

Sample output from Map Camera app

Sample output from Map Camera: Append a Map to your Photo app.

The idea of this app is pretty nice. If I was at a new restaurant I could snap a photo, attach the map, and send it to some friends. Or I could just post something of interest to Twitter. So many options! In theory that would be nice. In reality, the app still needs some improvements related to usability and options.

The first issue was trying to get the map attached to the photo. This was not apparent at all, and even after I have gotten it to work a few times I am still getting confused here and there. You basically end up getting images into the album of the app itself, and then when you select the ‘share’ icon in the upper right corner there is an option to ‘Append map’ buried in there. Not quite as obvious as I had hoped.

Trying to determine how to apply the filter is also tricky, particularly when importing images from your camera album.

Once you append the map you then select the ‘share’ icon once again. You’ll have the option to remove the map, email, tweet, save to camera roll, delete the image etc. I think images can only be deleted one at a time (as far as I could tell).

I’d also like to see additional options for the app. Right now you can enter your name and it will show up on the image. But other than that, you don’t get options on what information to display. Having the date/time optional would be nice. I’m also not sure why the city didn’t show up – only the state was there (update: the city is now there in the first update of the app). I was not allowed to adjust the map in any way. It would have been nice to let me zoom in/out at least a bit.

If your image is in landscape mode you get additional information place on the photo shown here.

Landscape oriented image from Map Camera app

Landscape oriented image from Map Camera app. I did not enter my name in the app so the photographer is not identified.

Overall I really like the idea of the app, but it needs a bit of work to improve the usability and add options. It isn’t the highest priority for this type of app, but the output resolution of the image seems to have a maximum value of 1896 pixels on my iPhone 5. I’ll keep this app on my iPhone, just in case I ever need this type of image. Probably not often, but it’s always good to be prepared. 🙂

If you are interested, and might want to create nifty map/images like this, the Universal app is just $1 on iTunes. [download]


Description

Map Camera is about telling the world (and reminding yourself) where your photos are taken.
Map Camera lets you append a location map to each of your photos with a single tap.
It prints location and time stamp automatically on your photos as you take them.
Filters are selected and applied on the fly as you take photos rather than after photos are taken. You see the world through the selected filter while composing your shots!
In-app sharing of your creations via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, email…
No cropping is required when shared to Instagram.
List technical things about your photos (ISO, shutter speed, flash…)
Import photos from your photo library to append maps to them.
See example photos created or edited by Map Camera on twitter/ Instagram: #mapmypic #mappic

We have built in a simple one-tap feedback system to hear your inputs. Please use it before hating us on the Review page 😀 Thanks a lot!

Awesome Features:
– Minimalist and intuitive interface design with swipe and tap gestures;
– Append location map to each of your photos with a single tap;
– Print location and time stamp automatically on your photos as you take them
– Select and switch photo formats (Portrait, landscape, square) on the fly;
– Select and switch photo filters on the fly while composing your shots;
– Complete metadata (exif, GPS, …) is retained in final saved photos;
– List and view all raw metadata on an overlay;
– Built-in single-tap sharing with Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, email;
– Import photos from photo library for location and time stamping, and map appending
– In-app feedback system for easy direct communication with the developers. Please use it :p

App Sales, Last Weekend of May

There are a number of nice apps on sale during the three-day weekend. Here are some that you may want to check out.

JixiPix iPhone apps. Pretty much all of them are on sale for just $1. A great price. Here is a full listing of all their apps on iTunes. My favorite one right now is Aquarella.

Flare lets you do HDR video with a live preview. Usually $3, free right now.

Blux Camera Pro for iPhone and Blux Camera for the iPad are currently $1.

Big Photo is a Universal app. Just $1.

PicsPlay Pro, a Universal app, is just $1.

Flower and Farm
Created with Aquarella.

A Chat with an Artist

The web is one of those things that is amazing if you sit down to think about it. Connections cross the globe via a flow of electrons, light, and waves on the world wide web. One WWW connection I made last year was an artist/designer/illustrator who lives in Sweden (a place I’ve always wanted to visit!). She dropped by this site with a few questions and I got a chance to find out what Kate England thinks about iPhoneography.

The images below were taken by Kate, and you can see more great work over at her Marmalade Moon blog.

Kate, how did you discover iPhoneography?

When I got my first iPhone, I immediately started to explore how I could use it as a creative tool and discovered how easy the iPhone made it to slip a creative layer onto your life. This was in 2008, and it was when I was using apps like CameraBag and Hipstamatic that realised the potential of this new art form.

woman with hat by Kate England

What is the best thing about iPhoneography?

It’s easy, fun and accessible. The iPhone as a creative medium, make it easy to harness your creativity on the go. This is the art form that can stretch to fit any time slot you have available and it doesn’t create a mess to be cleaned up when you’re finished.

The larger screen of the iPad helps you edit or paint your images, and the iPhone is unbeatable as a tool to capture images with. Once you’ve got the device, the apps are inexpensive. With digital art and photography, you have an endless supply of paint and film, no restocking required, and no harmful chemicals to handle.

All you really need to get started is an iPhone. No studio, no long uninterrupted blocks of time, no expensive supplies. You can get started in no time, edit your photos on your commute to and from work, or while you wait for your kids to come out of school. Through photo sharing sites like Flickr, you can easily join a global, creative conversation and show off your work for free!

snowy crossing by Kate England

Would you call this a Mobile Art Revolution?

This new genre of art, includes photography, digital art, collage and natural media. It’s full of possibilities and variations. You can work in a documentary style, fingerprint on your iPhone with natural media, or create artwork using a fusion of different techniques. This contemporary, exciting art form is still evolving, blending the boundaries between art and photography.

How does one start taking better photos with an iPhone?

It’s easy to get started, but how do you learn to become a better photographer or artist? I think one of the main things is to start weaving creativity into your days, by finding pockets of time, and converting them into creative time. Art is a practice, and when we form a creative routine for ourselves, we can’t help but build momentum. Exploration is another important aspect of creativity, playing with colour and composition, testing things out, keeping it spontaneous and fun to learn new things. No matter which apps you use, your original and unedited photo will always shine through your post-processing, so it will pay off to learn some of the basic techniques for image elements such as light and composition.

The Rhythm of Transcendence by Kate England

Do iPhoneographers end up finding their own style?

I think your style finds you, if you only keep up the momentum! iPhoneography is very novelty driven, and as a result, extremely focused on the latest apps for special effects. Your art will be more unique, if you avoid the filters and effects that are in vogue just now. Try focusing more on what kind of images you love to create, and then think about which apps will support you best in creating those images.

Thanks Kate! You do some amazing work. I’m a loyal reader of Marmalade Moon and always enjoy your photos. If I’m ever in Sweden I’ll try to get to Stockholm.


Kate EnglandKate England is an artist, illustrator and designer who loves to create bold and colourful work, mixing together digital and analogue processes. She is based in Stockholm, Sweden.
Portfolio | Journal | Marmalade Moon

Transferring with transfr

Transferring photos is one of those things that is always needed. I was hoping Apple would let us easily get our shots from place to place via the iCloud, but they won’t let you get full resolution images between iOS devices. Thus, I always end up needing to use an app to transfer images.

A new app called transfr was released last month. It is a Universal app so you can run it on your iOS devices, and it also has a free program for your computer. You can send or receive from all these devices by running the app on each device, and you can transfer via bluetooth or wifi.

This video shows me using the app on my iPad and desktop to transfer photos back and forth.

This is a really great version 1.0. The interface is minimalistic on the desktop app, and is primarily just an icon in your menu bar. It’s designed for just sending and receiving, nothing more complex than that. The iOS apps have a very clean interface. Transferring was smooth, and I didn’t encounter any errors.

The closest competitor to this is Photo Transfer App (PTA), which is the one I’ve always used in the past. The GUI of PTA on iOS is a bit ‘noisy’, and the desktop portion of PTA has many more features – and is more of a full organizational program. As features increase it is often difficult to keep a streamlined interface. Fact of life.

Both of these transfer apps do a great job getting your photos from point A to point B, so choosing between them might come down to your preference for interface.

In the future I’m hoping the tranfr program for your Mac will make it to the Mac App Store (currently you download from the transfr home page). I’m also torn between wanting more in the desktop app. Having a simple ‘drop zone’ window to send photos would be nice. Right now you can only select photos, there is no drag/drop way to send photos to your iOS device from your desktop.

You can learn more about transfr on the website, and the iOS transfr app can be downloaded from iTunes (currently $2).

Update: I talked with the developer and he said that the desktop app will be arriving in the Mac App Store in the next few weeks.


Description

The easiest, fastest way to transfer your photos & videos between your iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and your Mac.
For the Mac version, please visit http://transfrapp.com (requires OS X 10.7.3 or later)

★ Anywhere, anytime

In the train, at the bar or in the middle of the ocean, send your photos and videos over bluetooth (iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad only). Back home, transfer your photos to and from your Mac over WiFi.

★ Limitless

Send a quick pic, a photo album or your latest holiday’s videos without limits. transfr has no limits on the number of photos you can send at once, and no limits on file size or video durations.

★ Slick and simple

Connect to other devices with just one tap or click. The devices automagically discover each other, and connection is established with just one tap or click.

★ Powerful

Send your photos in full resolution with all metadata preserved. transfr is the ideal tool for photo enthusiasts that don’t want their photos to be recompressed or modified during the transfer.

★ Safe and secure

Your photos and videos are transferred directly between two devices, without transiting on the cloud. No subscription cost, no storage limit and no privacy concerns!

★ Buy once for all

Buy once on your iPhone/iPad and install transfr on all your other devices. transfr is free on the Mac.

Pop & Mob, A Good Mid-Week Sale

Two apps that I enjoy are both on sale for just $0.99 in the middle of the week (or almost the middle). Popsicolor and lo-mob.

Popsicolor is a Universal app that I use whenever I want to make a nifty illustration with the watercolor look.

• Turn Your Photos Into Stylish Illustrations
• Amazing Watercolor & Ink Effects
• Yes! High Resolution Output*
• Universal App for iPhone & iPad
• Share on Instagram, Twitter, etc.
• From the creator of Percolator for iOS

NYPD, Ink.

An app that I use almost daily for my ‘shot of the day’ on my iPhone is lo-mob.

Have you ever experiment with your old analog cameras? Have you put a 35mm film in a medium format body? Have you ever tried to achieve Through The Viewfinder (TTV) photography by shooting a picture with a camera through the viewfinder of another?

Take a picture or choose one from your library, Lo-Mob will process it, and give you a preview of all its 39 filters, at once.

You’ll be able to tweak the filter you chose, altering the frame, the vignetting, the color filter or the blurring.

Clouds!