Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Get Fat on Yummy Nougat Updated Camera Apps. But such goodness comes with a price.

"The Falls" - Nexus 6p, captured using Long Exposure Camera 2

There's some good news and bad news taking photos using Android Nougat. The good news is the stock camera app with the Nexus 6p can take some really good photos without trying too hard. If you put in a bit of effort and know at least some basics of photography, you can take excellent shots using the same setup. Then there's the bad news, which may or may not affect you depending on how you use your phone.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Android Nougat Camera Official Release (For Nexus users) - Stock Android 7.0 Camera on a Nexus 6p - Photo Director 7 Ultra - SurfaceBook

"City Flowers" - Custom filter, HDR Non Ugly. This is the last batch of images captured to test the custom filters generated using Photo Director as well as the camera in the Android Nougat official release. The camera performed well overall. One minor problem is the shutter still isn't as fast as I'd like it to be. A few moments I missed because the shutter was too slow to fire off. Fractions of a second matter. The other two issues are major and I'd love to know what happened at Google offices to make this happen. 1) Time lapse recording is gone. I couldn't find it anywhere in the app or app settings. That's disappointing because it worked really well with the Nexus 6p on Marshmallow. 2) Exposure Compensation is gone. Again, it's nowhere to be found. Exposure Compensation works in 3rd party camera apps, but it's MIA in the stock camera app which makes no sense considering it was in the beta. I have no idea why Google just can't seem to get it together when it comes to the camera app for stock Android. It's getting almost as bad as Google's messaging app strategy. But the stock camera app is good for taking relatively quick shots when too much thought isn't needed. For anything more ambitious, use a third party app. In the case of the 7.0 stock camera app, less is definitely not more. 


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Custom Filters Day 2 - Nexus 6p/Android Nougat Camera - Photo Director 7 Ultra/SurfaceBook

"Everything's Gonna B Alright"- Custom Filter, Black and White 01. Android Nougat officially released yesterday for Nexus users with current devices. So the images you see here we taken using the stock Android 7.0 camera on a Nexus 6p with a couple captured using Manual Camera. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the filters are all custom made in Photo Director 7 Ultra. It's not that that Nexus 6p camera images need filters. Quite the contrary, but making custom filters are fun and does add a lot to some photos especially when going for a specific feel that's not possible in-camera.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Photography - More Custom Filters - Photo Director 7 Ultra - SurfaceBook

Sepia Tone 02 - "Avenue of the (Dark) Arts" I was inspired by the Exorcist with this filter. *Note - all images were captured with a Nexus 6p running Android Nougat Beta. 

Building Custom Photo Filters - Photo Director 7 Ultra - Surfacebook


I've been further testing Android Nougat's camera on the 6P with the latest APIs as well as a number of 3rd party camera apps. The camera on the Nexus 6p is excellent but I'm falling out of love with Android photo editing apps. I started a new project in Photo Director 7 as a result and decided to create my own filters. It's a fun and straight forward process that has a lot of depth. Of course, one needs to know about exposure, tint, saturation, split-toning and other photography concepts to truly take advantage of the tools. But the basics of brightness/contrast/curves should be easy enough for most to get started and the advanced features can be learned as you go.

The filter I created and used for this image is Clarity and Brightness 2. A "Before and After" image can be viewed after the jump. Another cool aspect to creating your own filters are those same filters can be used in Power Director 14 or Color Director 4 if you have a video project that could use some tweaking. Yes, I'm all about life without Adobe.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Character Designs - The Sisters - Clip Studio Pro 5 - Surfacebook

08/24/2016 - I added some shadows to this as it felt like they weren't strong enough in the previous piece. Maybe I'm nitpicking...

Android 7.0/Pro Shot Camera tests

These are two of the best shots captured using Pro Shot Camera after an update to better support Android 7.0 Nougat. Android 7.0 is still in beta but it's very close to being final. There are some last minute tweaks to the default camera app because the current version of the beta removes exposure compensation from the stock camera app. But the function actually works in some 3rd party camera apps. As a result, testing continues.