Inspiration

Get Glitchy with Your Phone’s Panorama Function


Glitching is the digital equivalent of throwing a roll of film into water and seeing what happens.

While you might not want to dip your phone in H2O, you can get experimental with your phone photos other ways.

And by other ways, we mean panorama glitching.

All you need is a sweep of the arm to get your panorama to stitch a scene in really strange and awesome ways.

(We used iOS 6’s built-in panorama, but you can try this with pretty much any auto-stitching pano app.)

1) Stitch totally different parts of a scene

  • Sweep your phone to capture one part
  • Stop, then quickly move your phone to another part of the scene
  • And sweep again

The result ends up looking like a diptic with sweet transitions that vary from wavy edges to smooth stitching or black edges.

2) Make a jagged composition of a single subject by jerking your hand as you shoot the pano. This makes for a choppy, mosaic-like image.

Try other experiments like twisting your phone as you shoot. More examples at the link below!

BONUS: Another trick to try is getting your model to show up multiple times.

Make Panorama Phoneography Experiments

p.s. Show us your panoramas! Post it to our Facebook wall, and tomorrow (4/9) we’ll pick 4 favorites to feature on our Facebook page.

Seeing Double: Learn How to Clone Yourself


Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

Have you ever had a dream where you looked around the room and everyone looked exactly like you?

Wait, was that a dream?

Either way, you can turn your camera into the ultimate cloning device and make like a million clones of yourself!

With our guide, you can learn how to make carbon copies of yourself (the best photo subject around).

Lay on the couch while vacuuming, or build a human pyramid out of 10 versions of yourself.

You can make images where you (appear to) do it all. You’ve always wanted a stunt double, right?

Go Ahead, Duplicate Yourself

p.s. Learn the elements of lighting and sweet power-moves you didn’t know your phone had in our Phoneography 101 course. All the cool kids are doin’ it. Sign up!

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Litely’s Subtle & Sophisticated Photo Presets are What You’ve Been Waiting For


You tried running your DSLR photos through phone apps.

But the details got lost, and you were left with a tiny photo!

Cole Rise’s Litely might just have made the perfect preset actions for your digital photos. And it’s no wonder, have you seen Cole’s photos?

Each set comes with twelve presets that gracefully adjust the color and tone of your photos with a look reminiscent of film.

But what makes these so different from all the other presets out there?

They’re impressively subtle and keep the skin tones of your subjects looking natural, all without washing out the detail. Plus, they’re pretty as heck!

The best part is they were each made to work with nearly any kind of lighting. So you can use use them whether you shoot outside, in low light, or in a studio.

We might just call Cole Goldilocks ’cause these presets are just right.

You can check the presets out in action at Lite.ly’s blog. They’re available Photoshop, Lightroom, Aperture, or Adobe Camera Raw.

Litely, Simply Beautiful Photo Presets

The Ultimate Guide to Vine: Pro-Tips, Awesome Ideas, and Who to Follow!


It’s easy to forget about the video function built into your camera phone.

It’s just that videos end being too big to send to friends, and who wants to wait for a video to download anyway?

Man, are we spoiled. Back in our parents’ day, they had to carry 20lb VHS recorders just to shoot a few minutes of film! Us? We have a video recorder that fits in our pocket.

Vine fixes all of this and then some.

It’s an app that lets you share snippets of video –six seconds to be exact– in a super-digestible format. As you scroll through a stream of friends’ videos, the video on your screen instantly plays.

This isn’t just another Instagram. It’s a whole new platform for showing off your creativity. There’s so much you can do in six seconds!

Plus, you get to share life-experiences with friends as they happen. And that right there is pretty much the coolest thing your phone has to offer.

So get it, and then read on for all the best tips, ideas, and inspiration on Vine.

The Ultimate Guide to Vine

p.s. Hey DSLR lovers! Have you seen the Lensbaby Spark? It’s a way fun, bendable tilt-shift lens that’s totally affordable.

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DIY: Steel Wool Lightpainting for Under $10


Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

Johnny Cash famously once sung, “Love is a burning thing.”

Whether you’re in a committed relationship, a fledgling romance or recently unattached this Valentine’s Day, one thing is certain: love is like a flame.

To honor the fires of love, Mike Benson of Wed Over Heels is showing us how to light paint with steel wool to visually ignite the frame!

This stunning effect costs less than $10 in supplies and requires no Photoshop or post-processing.

With the right precautions, you and few friends can certainly pull it off and keep your eyebrows. (Be sure to read the Safety Notice in the tutorial!)

How to Lightpaint with Steel Wool

p.s. Heads up! creativeLIVE has a free live online course to brush up on your digital photog skillz. Everything from the nitty-gritty to pro tips!
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Not to Miss: An Astronaut Who Tweets Dazzling Photos from Space


Chris Hadfield might be the hippest astronaut yet.

He shares recordings from space on Soundcloud, chats with William Shatner on Twitter, and plays guitar shows from the International Space Station.

Best of all, he shoots and tweets jaw-dropping photos of Earth from space every. single. day.

Sure you’ve seen a photo from space before, but not like this. Chris’ poignant tweets show us what it’s really like to have a daily view of Earth from far, far above.

Here’s a sampling of some of the best! (Word is he shoots with a Nikon and a 400mm lens.)

If you’re lucky, you could even get featured in one of his photo challenges! Chris will be in space through May 2013, so keep an eye out for more daily photos (see past ones on his Tumblr & Facebook).

Wanna shoot your own space photos? DIY it with a weather balloon or reverse it with this NASA tutorial on how to shoot the ISS from home. Also, the official Chris Hadfield photo contest.

Daily Photos Tweeted from Outer Space

How Does a Blind Person Use Instagram? This Blind Instagrammer Demos


What if your camera could talk to you? That’s exactly what Tommy Edison’s can do.

Tommy has been blind since birth, but he uses Instagram on the regular. In fact, he has over a thousand followers!

It’s all thanks to the Accessibility setting on his iPhone, a setting that dictates to him what’s on his screen. With it, he can shoot, pick filters, add a caption, and read comments.

You might be wondering why a blind person would use Instagram if they’re not able to see their photos. It’s pretty much the same reason those of us with vision do!

Through it, Tommy’s able to document and share his daily life with friends and fans. In a way, he even gets to “see” his photos through the feedback he gets.

Pretty amazing, right?

MORE: Check out our feature on Pete Eckert a blind art photographer and Amy Hildebrand a photographer born legally blind from albinism.

How Blind Photographers Use Instagram [Thanks, Darby!]

p.s. Our friends at New York Institute of Photography wanna help you become better photographers this year. You can take their classes on your time from just about anywhere!

DIY: Make Photo Gift Tags That’ll Make Even Santa Jealous


Extra photos for bloggers: 1, 2, 3

Makin’ a list, checkin’ it twice. Adding photo gift tags makes everything nice!

What, you don’t remember that line?

Personalized photo gift tags makes exchanging gifts even more fun than it already is.

Trust us, this tutorial will have you singing along to your favorite Holiday tunes while adding style and personality to your gifts.

Forget the wrapping paper, this year we’re saving the tags!

How to Make Personalized Photo Gift Tags

p.s. Follow us on Facebook at 1PM EST today. We’ll be knocking dollars off our Phone Lens Series for every share. Lowest possible price is zero! READ MORE

DIY: How to Make a Photogram Wreath!


We spotted this fantastic Inkodye wreath project over at Design*Sponge, and we just had to share it with you guys!

If you haven’t heard of Inkodye, it’s fabric dye that’s light sensitive.

That means you can print photos onto fabric in all kinds of colors – blue, orange, red or mix them to make new colors! You can print photos onto scarves, dresses, bags, furniture, canvas, satin, even leather.

Here’s what you need:

  • Inkodye (light sensitive fabric dye)
  • A paintbrush
  • A plastic cup
  • Solid colored cotton fabric
  • Pine branches or a small wreath
  • Cardboard (the size of your fabric)
  • Thumbtacks
  • Laundry detergent

And here’s what you do!

1. Get your fabric ready

Cut your fabric to a size that will fit your wreath and pin it to your piece of cardboard in each corner. If you don’t have a wreath, you can use a few sprigs from a holiday tree to form a small wreath. You can also get creative with objects or make photo transparencies on your printer to create an image on the dye.

2. Prep your Inkodye

Shake your Inkodye bottle for 10 seconds, and then pour it into a plastic cup.

3. Paint the dye onto your fabric

In a dim place, use the brush to paint the Inkodye onto the fabric. It’s up to you what shape you want the dye to make. Just make sure it’s big enough to fit your wreath.

4. Lay down the wreath

Place the wreath onto the painted fabric while it’s still wet. Use your thumbtacks to pin down the parts of the pine branches that are sticking up. This will help you get a sharper, more detailed outline.

5. Expose it!

Take your fabric as is outside, and expose it to direct sunlight for 5 to 10 minutes. Your exposure time will depend on how strong the sunlight is, so gauge on how dark the dye is getting over time until it’s how you want it.

6. Wash it

To stop the dye from darkening more, wash it. Remove the wreath and wash the fabric with hot water and detergent two times (15 minutes by hand or in a washing machine). You can then dry it in a dryer or on a line. Fin! You have a lovely wreath photogram.

Thanks to Maxwell Tielman & Design*Sponge for this great project! See their full write-up.

Our Most-Fun-Ever Holiday Photo Ideas 2012!


Last year, we showed you how to one-up those mall elves in the holiday photo game.

This year, we’ll show you how to spin circles around them. Pretty soon those guys are going to be asking *you* for photo tips (and who knows, maybe Santa will hire you as his new photog).

We’re sharing a slew of photo ideas that your family will actually have fun doing! Even the most stoic of teens will crack a smile.

From creative backgrounds to great group photos that take less than 5 minutes to all the holiday lights fun you can imagine, you’re bound to find an idea that’s both creative and a blast.

Those mall elves might have speedy printers, but you have JoJo on your side.

10 Fun & Original Holiday Photo Ideas

p.s. The Super Fantastic Photojojo Lookbook is here. Share with your pals for $5 off any order, TODAY ONLY! READ MORE