How To Cheat


I am not a photographer, but I like making pictures. When I take a photograph I look through the lens as if I were making a painting. Some of my pictures I may well use in the future for reference when I’m making a piece of work. They are visual prompts; reminders of  places, objects or people that interest me or capture my imagination. 99% of the photographs on this blog have been taken with an iPhone , the remaining 1% with a Canon 5D in both Manual and Automatic mode. Before I reveal my trade secrets I’d like to introduce you to a few WordPress bloggers whose photography is second to none and who each display the skills of true photographers. Not only do they create beautiful pictures but they are truly knowledgable in their art. These guys have spent years mastering the art of photography both in analog and digital, and I am in awe of them. Please check out their blogs, you won’t be disappointed. Andrew is a fantastic photographer. He has a fabulous eye,  a wicked sense of humour and is far too self-depracating. His recent trip to Antarctica and the photographs that ensued are quite breathtakingly beautiful. He has a keen sense of fun, but in matters of photography he is a consummate professional and knows his stuff. Steve lives in America and takes stunning photographs of landscapes and nature. I’ve only recently started to follow him but I’m smitten by his pictures and envious of how he captures nature and his surroundings at their finest. PJ only uses analog and doesn’t mess about with digital cameras. I love the rawness of his pictures and his composition. I have great respect for him as a photographer. leanne lives in Australia. She has a marvellous website which showcases her photographs beautifully. She talks the reader through the various stages and workings of each photograph and gives technical advice where appropriate. She photographs urban scenes, as well as landscapes and I especially admire her way of capturing buildings.

There are many, many photography blogs which I follow and like, but these 4 have qualities that I especially admire and envy!

Let’s get back to my cheating.

I’ve learnt quite a bit from reading blogs here on WordPress and have picked up lots of helpful tips and advice from the generous folks that have been kind enough to share their information.  I felt it was time that I did something similar, there is no secret or skill to what I do.  Many of you reading this will already be aware of  the photo apps that are available to download to your phone. I’m often asked about my pictures and I’m happy to share the apps that I use with you –  if it helps in anyway then that’s a job well done! There is no science, it is simply a case of finding ones that work for you and then downloading them.

Aside from the normal camera on the phone, I have downloaded 4 other apps. Instagram which I never use, Pro HDR which is pretty special but you need a steady hand! Google Snapseed and my favourite Tadaa. The only one that I had to pay for was Pro HDR, all the rest were free. The reason that I love Tadaa is that it comes with a variety of filters and options all which are easy to use. I just point and shoot then save with my filter of choice.

I’d love to hear what apps you have for taking photographs on your phone. If  you have any that you’d like to share in the comments – Go for it!

13 thoughts on “How To Cheat

  1. Lottie, you are very generous in your comments. I am humbled. Uriah Heep couldn’t be more ‘umble. (Wikipedia describes UH as “notable for his cloying humility, obsequiousness, and insincerity,”. Well that sounds about right.) There is nothing wrong with using an iPhone, especially as it serves you as a basis for some of your paintings. You have an artistic streak far beyond mine. I still have my P plates on if not my L plates. I do use an iPhone occasionally and I have Snapseed, something called Camera (wow, that took some dreaming up!) and SloPro. I haven’t used any of them in ages I’m afraid. My best app is my virtual HP12C – cost me US$12. All my camera apps were free. I have even been known to use the iPhone to make telephone calls although its not very good at that.

    When I saw “How to cheat” I thought this was going to be another post about bow ties. Steve is a very accomplished photographer. I have an original “Steve” hanging in my home – I hear he is very collectible. Order now whilst stocks last. I recommend his Trilliums. Or should that be Trillia? I will never be an exhibitionist but Lulu likes my pictures so much she has been known to lick them all over. The dog has impeccable taste. I asked he what she thought of my work and she said “ruff”. And that is probably a fair assessment. 🙂


    1. I’m very heartened to hear that you don’t use your apps. I’d be faintly appalled if you said that you did!! In fact I’d have to take your name ‘orf the list pronto. One cheat on here is quite enough 🙂

      Glad Lulu likes your photos, she does have impeccable taste 🙂


  2. This is quite kind of you, Lottie, to give us some nice exposure and props as you have done above.
    And I think, based on the really cool image above, that you are a bit self-deprecating yourself. You are right…secrets and skills are no guarantee of a good image. But you have the vision as you expressed that you look through the viewfinder as if painting. Not everyone understands that nor do they practice that. You have an interesting way of seeing and you create art with the camera just as you do with other media.
    I am not sure using apps is cheating, That said, I am sorry not to be able to share any creative apps as I don’t use my phone for photography to my own detriment. I have a few apps to tell me where the sun will rise and when or how long an exposure should be when using a neutral density filter but nothing creative besides Snapseed which I don’t actually use. But the price was right so I downloaded it. 🙂


  3. Thanks Steve. I’m a bit Black & White (pun fully intended) about whether someone is a photographer or not. I’m very old school in that way. For me a photographer has to know how to use an analog camera, know about lighting, film, developing, printing and all the rest. I have an ancient Hasselblad that I use and adore it. It is so simple and easy and the pictures are wonderful. Years ago when I was at art school I did all my own developing but I’ve forgotten those skills now, it’s been so long! I’d love to work with someone really knowledgable who could tutor me.
    I do feel like I am cheating using the iPhone and the apps but it’s nice of you to say otherwise!


  4. Gorgeous photo of the parasol! And I can totally see this as a painting.

    I don’t see why using an iPhone is “cheating.” I’ve seen plenty of images taken from iPhones that were NOT worth the use of my eyes (mostly pics snapped of lunch. hello??). This is not the case with your photos, Lottie, which I always feel are lovely and interesting. It’s the eye, not the equipment. xoxo


    1. You are extraordinarily kind to say so darling but, I know that you know what I mean. Let’s discuss on a Skype call next week!

      I do know what you mean about the lunch shots….total agreement on that!! xoxo


  5. You did good girl when you named two of my most favorite guys in the universe, Andrew and Steve. Not only are they great photographeers but I REALLY BELIEVE these two guys are for real. By that I mean they seem to be nice, down-to-earth humans. I gather that just through their words in whatever they write.Steve does not write much but he has commented quite a few times on some of my posts so I got an idea of the kind of person that you would want as a neighbor. Same thing to be said of Andrew. The others I know not but plan to take a look their way.

    Now on to other important matters, meaning you and your camera. I had no idea that you are using an iphone most of the time. The photos are all so good. So yes, I think you can very well call yourself a photographer. We could make that a photo journalist because you write so well. You are one talented woman.

    Did I ever mention by chance that my favorite bloggers happen to all be Brits. How strange is that? The names: Lottie, Andrew, Ralph, Val, Rob( he is now Canadian), and rough seas ( I know not her actual name but she can write) and several photographers that are on Flickr that are British as well. Their photos leave me in awe. But I can not leave out the one favoroite American photographer and that is Steve.

    A nice post Lottie. Very good . Great info if one wants to carry something light, For me I must have that camera and view finder. My daughter uses her phone some but since that s— hit the fan for her there have been no photos sent my way.


  6. Good to hear from you Yvonne. Yes, I’m a fully paid up member of the Andrew/Steve fan club as well!

    I love my phone – I get more use out of it for taking photos than anything else!!


  7. *makes mental note never to share lunch photos* I love that photo Lottie, it’s like the parasol is on fire. I haven’t ever used iPhone apps for photos, but I might check some out. I’m usually just snapping embarrassing photos of my family. Or lunch. 😉


    1. Dearest Tricia, absolutely nothing wrong with sharing lunch photos…especially that great one you put up yesterday of you being the only person in the restaurant! I did have a larf’ when I saw it.

      Check out the apps, you’ll love them. They give a whole new dimension to taking photos with your phone – Get creative baby xx


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