Sunset near Eagle Point, Oregon

Sunset near Eagle Point, Oregon

I shot, edited and posted the above image the other day entirely while mobile and thought it would be a fun process to share. I really can't explain my obsession with doing as much editing as possible on the iPad, but I do love it! In brief, the above image was created like this…

1. I shot a handled 7-shot, 1-stop bracket sequence on the Panasonic GX7 (Micro Four Thirds) with the Panasonic/Leica 25mm f/1.4 lens. Within a few seconds of the last exposure, the sun was no longer hitting the grass. A few seconds later and I would have missed the shot!

2. Using the Panasonic Image App, I copied two exposures to the iPad mini; –2 and +1 EV

3. Using TrueHDR, I combined those two exposures, carefully adjusting to ensure the clouds and foreground were well represented. By the way I'd love to find an iOS HDR app that let's you use more than two images. If you know of one, please let me know in the comments. 

4. Using iPhoto, I retouched some sensor spots, then blended and softened the hard-edged halo on the hotspot of the sun introduced by the HDR merge. I also cropped and saved two versions; a square one for Instagram and the version you see above for everywhere else. 

5. Finally I posted to the socials. Typically I'd post just using Instagram and let that feed everywhere else, but in this case I wanted the wide image, so I posted individually using each social media app. I actually decided to post the wide version on Instagram too so I used Squaready to squarify it, but later posted the square crop anyway.

Here are the shots through the process. 

The –2 EV exposure, selected for the detail in the bright clouds

The –2 EV exposure, selected for the detail in the bright clouds

The +1 exposure, selected for the foreground details

The +1 exposure, selected for the foreground details

Here's the original merge in iPhoto. You can see that Crop and Brushes have been applied to the final version, and if you look closely in the sky, you'll see sensor spots, and the hard-line inside of the sun

Here's the original merge in iPhoto. You can see that Crop and Brushes have been applied to the final version, and if you look closely in the sky, you'll see sensor spots, and the hard-line inside of the sun

All the apps used maintained the entire original resolution, 15.9 MP. Many of the apps out there will scale your images down, which I obviously would rather not have happen. I guess there are always limits; even iPhoto for iOS maxes out at 19 MP, I believe. But many apps will scale down or simply refuse to open even these 15.9 MP photos. Just be aware when using them; not all apps even have the courtesy of telling you they've scaled your photos. I use iPhoto to check once the image is saved; the info panel will tell you the exact pixel count and size in megapixels.

There are limitations to this workflow, for example I'm working from JPEG files and not the RAW, but in many cases that's just fine. The workflow isn't for every situation, but it works beautifully for many. In my next post I'll show an example of a client job, delivering samples during the shoot, and even providing a mock-up sky replacement—all from the iPad mini and GX7.

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