Tuesday, May 11, 2010

How my Motorola Droid smart phone makes me a better photographer.

I love my Motorola Droid! AT&T has poor reception where I live in Tahoe so an iphone is out of the question, Verizon has the best as far as I've experienced. A few months ago, I stepped into the world of smart phones and I couldn't be happier with my decision. I feel that my Droid has been one of my greatest new additions to my camera bag, it has proven to be an incredible tool that has helped me get more great photos than I would have without it. My favorite Droid apps that I feel help make me a better photographer are (all free, just search the titles in the Droid app Market) :

Google Maps- I feel like I have a helicopter's view of what's around me when 4x4ing the Tahoe trails. "Oh, there's a small lake right over there I didn't know about and would have never seen from the trail!"  I don't always get reception out there but I am often surprised at how often I do. 

Maps (-) - This app lets you view and save maps when you do have reception, then you can bring up that map when you don't have reception.  Bye bye paper maps.

Google Sky Map- You can judge where the sun and moon will rise long before they do. Great for picking out a location when shooting the sunrise or moonrise. I feel like I can look into the future.

GPS Status- You can tag your gps location and email a link to yourself containing the google maps location. Great for sharing location info on blogposts later. (see previous blogpost about the Tufas of Mono Lake)

MoonPhase- A widget that shows what phase the moon will be on every day for the next month. Great for planning full moon shoots.

SunMoon- Computes the rise and set times for the sun and moon based on your gps location. Another great tool for shooting the sunrise, moonrise, and sunset.

The Weather Channel app - 10 day, 36 hour, and hourly local and far away forecasts in my pocket. Many benefits to this one.

Camera- I like taking a picture of my real camera or a self portrait next to my real camera with nice scenery in the background and posting on Facebook while out in the field. I like to think it gets my "fans" and friends curious about what the final images I upload to my website will look like. (see photo below)

DroidLight- LED flashlight app. I've gone out on hikes thinking I'll be back before sunset. Then I decided to shoot the sunset. This one has helped me get back to my truck when I didn't plan ahead properly.

ScannerRadio- Police and Fire scanner. I actually don't use this one as the closest city on the app to me is Reno. But I see how it could be a great tool for photo journalists looking to be first on a scene.

SmartPark- You can tag the location of your car. This is great when 4x4ing way out there and then hiking way away from your vehicle.

Google Translate and aCurrency- Great while traveling. Know what you're saying and spending while shooting in far away lands.

So, my only complaint about the Droid is I can't find a model release app. Anybody out there know of one? The iphone has one...

Also, if you have any apps to add to the list, I'd love to hear about them, iphone or Android. Please leave a comment. 

Self Portrait shot with a Motorola Droid. 


TalyO said...

How utterly awesome! I have been eyeing this little gadget myself. Thanks for the info, my friend!

Scott Thompson said...

Thanks Taly. It's a pretty fun little tool. Let me know if you have any other questions about it.

We'll be in LA in July, hope to see you guys then.


Anonymous said...

Good news! Easy Release (a popular iPhone model release app) by applicationGAP is coming soon to Droid. I received an e-mail from them today indicating that an android version is coming soon. ApplicationGAP recommends using Facebook or Twitter to find out when it will be available:

FYI... I also sent an e-mail to win-initiative.com today. They have the iD RELEASE iPhone app. Have not heard back from them yet.



Scott Thompson said...

Thanks for the info K-dog. Thats funny, I actually emailed Easy Release shortly after this blogpost and found the same info. Didn't know about iD Release, looks like another interesting one.

These app developers really need to start developing apps for both systems on a regular basis.

Thanks again and have a great weekend!


Anonymous said...

Good news Scott! Just received this from ApplicationGap (Easy Release):

-----Original Message-----
From: applicationGAP [mailto:info@applicationGAP.com]
Sent: Saturday, July 10, 2010 8:40 PM
To: info@applicationgap.com
Subject: Android Version of Easy Release

Since you have expressed interest in the past about an Android version of Easy Release, we are happy to inform you that it is now available on the Android Marketplace.


The ApplicationGap Team

Thought you'd want to know! :)

Scott Thompson said...

Thank you for the info K-dog. I should have updated my post. I have actually been beta testing the app for a couple weeks. It works great. Even used it professionally on a shoot. I think it's worth the price.

Have a great day.


Ron said...

Hi Scott,
I don't know if you saw the email I sent you, but another Android App you can check out is GoldenPic (or GoldenPicLite for the free version). If there's anything we can do to improve it, we'd love to hear from you.

Scott Thompson said...

Hi Ron, thank you. I finally had time to check it out and test GoldenPicLite. I LOVE it, great app for photographers. Does what it says so no need for improvement. I'll be using it on a regular basis, thanks again.

-Scott Thompson

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