Phone and Shoot

Online photo community flickr is a good barometer for current trends in photography. With 4.5 billion images hosted on the photo sharing site, there are some interesting statistics available there. Mind you, the majority of flickr users are of course photo amateurs. Nonetheless, the current stats published on flickr.com/cameras are actually mind-blowing. Or would you have guessed that the iPhone 4 is about to overtake the Nikon D90 as the most popular camera in the flickr community?

According to their graphs, the iPhone 4 has been an overwhelming success story in terms of photo uploads. Remember – the iPhone was only launched at the end of June 2010. Nikon’s D90 has been around for about three years, and is a proper SLR to boot (yehyeh, don’t shoot me, Canon users…). And yet the iPhone 4 accounts for almost as many uploads as the D90. So close are the two “cameras”, in fact, that we can assume the iPhone 4 is going to overtake the D90 in popularity within weeks.

No power for no one – shot on iPhone 4

What is the implication of this meteoric rise of the camera phone? Well, nothing really. If you are a serious photography head, you will laugh at any box that does not have a single lens and a collapsing mirror. But you may find, like I do, that the camera phone has already crept into photographic pratice. Proud owner of an iPhone 4 myself, I appreciate the fact that I carry a camera with me now, whenever I leave the house. I try to bring marky Mark with me almost all the time. But let’s face it: It is a heavy piece of equipment that bears down on your shoulders. Bouncers give you trouble if your equipment looks too professional when you are trying to go to a gig. And taking an expensive camera to a weekend festival where you also might want to leave the camera behind to go wild enjoy yourself without lugging the equipment around, you are simply asking for it to be stolen. The iPhone 4 allows you to phone point and shoot while still taking half-way decent pics.

I don’t think I will ever become as attached – photographically – to my iPhone as to lovely, reliable, gorgeous marky Mark, but it has helped me out on occasion (as mentioned in this recent post). I love the easiness of it, not much fumbling with settings just quickly recording a gig, “grabbing a slice of reality” to annoy impress my FB friends with what I am seeing, documenting family life in a handy and always-accessible photo album. The image quality is crap way below anything shot on a proper camera. But as a quick capture of memories it is unsurpassed.

Snap on!

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