Aside from the phone itself, the camera is probably the most used feature on smartphones today. Whether it’s a child playing, a funny sign or simply capturing the scenes of our current location, taking photos with a smartphone has become a habit for people the world over. Over on our Facebook page, you’ve shared many photos of a wide variety of items such as pets, cityscapes, and stunning flowers.
While we all take a lot of pictures with our smartphones, often times we want to tweak them in interesting and artistic ways. Additionally, the massive growth of services like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram has made it easier than ever to share photos with friends and family. With our latest series of smartphones, the HTC One, smartphone photography is better and easier than ever, complete with pro level post production features right in your pocket!
Here is an unedited photo taken from an HTC One X — a little slice of Waikiki beach:
It is a powerful photo that makes it easy to dream of having a drink in hand and toes in the sand. Before we share this photo with family and friends, let’s use the built-in effects to enhance the photo. When you select the photo, simple click “Edit” and then select “Effects” to bring up the Effects menu. This time, we only want to sharpen the colors and contrast so lets select “Auto enhance.”
To use the “Auto enhance” effect as seen above, tap on a photo in the gallery. Then tap “Edit”, “Effects” and select “Auto enhance” from the list of effects.
“Auto enhance” is a quick and easy way to make your photos a bit more crisp and really bring out the colors in your images. But the HTC One gives you a plethora of preloaded effects to choose and apply to your portfolio of images. While we added the basics like “Sepia,” we also developed a host of other fun options to let you add character to your photos. Let’s try “Bleak” and “Glimmer” next.
To use the “Bleak” effect as seen above, tap on a photo in the gallery. Then tap “Edit”, “Effects” and select “Bleak” from the list of effects.
The “Bleak” filter adds a number of adjustments to a photograph. Among them are changes to contrast, saturation, and exposure. It also changes to the white balance to a more green hue and introduces some grain to add texture to the photo.
To use the “Glimmer” effect as seen above, tap on a photo in the Gallery. Then tap “Edit”, “Effects” and select “Glimmer” from the list of effects.
While the “Glimmer” setting is in some ways similar to the previous effect, there are slight differences. Yes, contrast, white balance, saturation and other elements are changed, but there is also an addition of sharpness versus changes to levels and addition of grain.
Creating Custom Filters
One of the greatest tools is the ability to make your own effects and save them for later! When you press the “Edit” button, you get a large library of things you can change on your photographs through filters and frames. Let’s take a look at changes to the levels, contrast, and perhaps a tiny bit of vignetting (a bit of darkness fading in from the edges of the photo).
In the “Effects” menu, select “Edit” from the upper right. Then, select “Add filter” from the upper right. Select your desired filter from the drop down menu that appears.
Use the sliders on the left to changed the strength of the chosen filter.
When you are done adjusting the filters, you can either click “Done” to finish, or click “Save Preset” to retain your new custom look for future photos you take! Your new custom effect will be saved in the list of presets.
Select “Save Preset”, then entered your desired name for the new custom effect. It will then be listed among the other preset effects for later use. If you do not wish to save your custom effect for future use, you can simply press “Done.”
You can see a few more “before and after” shots below.
Rocks on a foggy coastline. The effect used here was “High contrast”
A slice of zucchini tart. The filter used was custom, changing to a more yellow white balance and higher contrast.
A plate of cookies. The effect used was “Auto enhance”
A bicycle leaning on a tree. A custom effect using high exposure and low contrast
Do you use effects on your photos? Which is your favorite (or did you make your own)? Let us know in the comments. Thanks, and happy shooting!