I have been a photographer for 25 years now and I have been using the iPhone since late 2007. but it wasn't until the iPhone 4s came out that I realised the potential this smartphone had for first making images and now with the iPhone 7+ video as well.
It's not as if I don't have good camera gear? Currently, I have access to the A6000, A6300, and A6500 with in body image stabilisation. Along with lenses like the 18-105 and the 28-135 cinema lens I use some really nice glass, so why do I keep coming back to my smartphone with its small sensor and fixed aperture? Well, one word "Apps" It's the apps that make the iPhone the power house camera system that it's been evolving into over the past couple of years.
I have 2 apps that I turn to when making images with the iPhone. If I want a shallow depth of field look I use the default camera app with its wonderful "Portrait" option. However, you have to been working in good light to take advantage of this feature and I will be keen to see what third party software creators do with this feature within their apps. Hint Hint "Moment"! My other go to (app) and the one I use the most for stills is a very recent discovery, plus I just mentioned it and its the "Moment" from Moment the iPhone lens manufacturer.
I use the "Moment" app from Moment lenses and it is perfect. The iPhone has a fixed aperture so it is purely a mix of ISO and shutter that you have to work with as well as focus. The "Moment" app allows you to choose the part of the image and set the exposure. It's the same with the focus. Select the circle and lock the focus. They also allow you to shoot RAW which means I can then make the most of each image file using Lightroom Mobile or Snapseed.
When it comes to video then there is only one app worth using and that is Filmic Pro. Although the default camera is good for a quick video or time-lapse. If you take your iPhone filmmaking seriously then you have to use Filmic Pro and the Filmic Remote App which I have loaded onto my iPad as well as our business iPhone. The Filmic Pro app alone opens up the iPhone to being used a serious filmmaking tool. No, it's not a RED Weapon or an Alexa but it is also not $80,000.00
It maximises the iPhone's ability to capture video up to 4K although I prefer to capture video at 1080p and have the option of working with higher frame rates for slow motion etc. I will go into depth in another post about all the features of the app but needless to say its brilliant as it allows you get the most bit-rate and thus the best quality.
So that I can up my iPhone filmmaking game I have purchased a Moment Wide v2 and also the new Macro v2 as well as the case for photography. They will all arrive pretty soon. I used to use Olloclip's 4 in 1 lens as they were king of the castle when it came to high quality third party lenses. However when Apple added the telephoto lens along side their wide standard wide lens Olloclip had to go back to the drawing board. During this time "Moment" came along and stolen the crown as the best third party lens maker. They are not cheap, but they use really good quality glass as well an all metal construction on their lenses, which also attach in similar fashion to the DSLR lenses that we are all used to using.
I could have bought their tele lens which gives a X2 magnification but I really like Apples new tele lens thats built in. However, I may purchase the tele lens pretty soon which will then give me a X4 magnification although I feel that may require some tripod usage.
Yes, there a huge amount of short comings to shooting on an iPhone as the sensor is pretty small to say the least. But considering the iPhone is just 10 years old it has come along long way since they first brought it out. There are many of my clients that will demand my Sony cameras purely on a quality front. But I also shoot a lot of work for clients social media platforms and this is where quality is much less of an issue. Although I would always strive to produce the best I possibly can for all my clients.
I am lining up a number of test shoots to see exactly what the iPhone can do in a professional setting and I will be documenting my journey on here.