Gerry Coe

Creating images using cameras built into Smartphones.


The problem for a lot of Photographers both professional and amateur is accepting that the quality of a camera phone is just not up to the standard of a DSLR or Mirrorless camera and as we all know we do a lot of Pixel Peeping.... Everyone is striving for more and better pixels.. “I got 25mps” says one photographer to the other “I got 40mps in my camera but I'm going to get the new 50mps one”

And that is how we go, striving for ultimate quality and sharpness, nothing wrong with that but do we really need all those pixels when all you print is an A3 size.

Now we come to camera phones, yes they are 5 or 8 or 12 or 20mps, are they not just the same as a “real” camera?

Not really. The chip in a camera phone is so much smaller therefore more enlarging or interpolation is needed to achieve your A3 size print and in doing so you can lose quality. Also the lenses may not be as great as a camera lens, cheaper plastic materials etc. but once again that is changing, new high quality glass from top lens manufactures is starting to be used. The phone manufacturers are now realising how important a decent camera is in their phones and the quality is improving with each new generation of phone. Already we are seeing the demise of the consumer point and shoot camera as everyone starts to use the phone/camera in their pocket.

But what can you do with a mobile phone/camera?

Well quite a lot really. There are now so many “apps” that can be used to turn your picture into almost anything, from a painterly style image to one using multiple layers creating abstract images. There are apps for giving old fashioned looks as if the image had been taken in the early days of photography 1860's Tintype, Wet Plate Collodion style, Pinhole, you can get early Polaroid looks or Diana/Lomo style images. Add Light leaks or differential focus, grain, grunge type filters, and textures.

Use retouching tools to remove or clone parts of images, enhance pictures through similar methods we use in programs like Photoshop or Lightroom. The possibilities are endless and are only limited by your imagination. From a personal point of view I have met online so many inspirational photographers/artists that I find I am almost overwhelmed by what I see. So I say don't write off someone because they don't have the latest and greatest piece of gear, look at what they produce, no one asked Turner, Van Gogh or any of the other great artists what particular canvas, paint or brushes they used.

Just consider “Is it a good picture?”

Gerry Coe.

Gerry Coe is an Internationally acclaimed Portrait Photographer, working in Northern Ireland known for both his Award winning Portraiture and his Fine Art images.

He is a Fellow of each of the four main photographic organisations (the highest award your peers can bestow on you) the British Inst of Professional Photographers, Master Photographers Association, Royal Photographic Society and the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers, and he has just recently received his Second Fellowship from the BIPP for his much acclaimed iPhone Photography images. This is the first time anyone, anywhere has achieved a Fellowship in iPhone or Mobile Photography. He is the first Double Fellow of the BIPP in Ireland and one of a very small group of double Fellows worldwide.