The World Photo Day organization was created in 2009 to celebrate the yearly birthday of this wonderful medium. And since 2010, the company has hosted a yearly gallery to commemorate this special day: this year, between August 19 – 26, you can submit any photo to be a part of WPD gallery.
There’s something special about this year’s celebration though? According to World Photo Day, today is the 175th anniversary of the birth of photography—well, sort of. A large part of the community accepts 1839, in which the daguerreotype process’ patent was purchased by the French government and declared “Free to the World,” as the year the medium was born.
But if one were to truly study the history of photography, he or she would realize that Thomas Wedgwood made the first accounted attempt, albeit unsuccessful. Soon after, Joseph Nicéphore Niépce developed the first known successful photograph: it actually took several days of exposure in order to produce an image and the result, which the below photo shows, is a blurry and eerily creepy mess.
But again, it was not until Niépce’s associate Louis Daguerre developed the aforementioned daguerreotype process that the medium became a part of society. This process cut the exposure time down to mere minutes and, as previously stated, led to the official birth date.
However, lets now fast forward several years, where famous British inventor Henry Fox Talbot created the calotype process, which unlike the daguerrotype process, allowed a photograph to be copied into multiple prints. And according to Princeton, Talbot was widely regarded as “a noted photographer who made major contributions to the development of photography as an artistic medium.”
Photography has been severely divided in this day and age: social media and easy to use devices have placed photography in everyone’s hands—even the less capable. And many would say that Niépce and Talbot would roll in their graves, if they could see the state of the art form now.
Contrary to popular belief, I think they would be quite happy with how far photography has come, as well as, the powerhouse that the medium has become. Perhaps, there is a time and place for art and there is a place for simple photography. But with technology ever-advancing, both can be achieved with an expensive three thousand dollar camera or—as Instagram has shown—with an iPhone. Now, this is not saying that, at the moment, iPhones can replace the top end DSLR cameras, because they cannot. But instead of fighting against what some call “the dilution of the medium,” perhaps it is time to embrace these changes: because what these devices are capable of doing is truly impressive.
In an attempt to step away from the boring history lesson or the soapbox rant, we at Resource found it important to talk about the newest branches of the photography field: particularly iPhone technology. Here are five iPhone photography apps that can help even the most inexperienced iPhone photographer create beautiful images to share with their friends and family.
5 iPhone Photography Apps To Help You Get Better Shots On World Photo Day
1) Slow Shutter Cam ($.99)
The Slow Shutter Cam, which is available at the iTunes Store, puts the ability to capture images with slow shutter speeds in everyone’s pocket: something that was only believed to be achieved on DSLR cameras.
2) Mextures ($1.99)
According to the iTunes Store, Mextures is famous for its ability to apply “film grain, textures, light leaks and beautiful gradients to your images in seconds.” However, this application also gives any photographer the ability to fully edit their photos, which makes it a one stop location for highly-detailed photo editing and processing.
3) VSCO Cam (Free)
A favorite among some of the Instagram photographers that we have talked to, VSCO Cam is another editing service that also happens to be free in the iTunes Store.
4) Litely (Free)
Litely is another free application that allows subtle “film-like tones” to be added to each photograph. In its most basic function, Litely is another photo editor, but its multiple options—including 36 additional presets in the shop—make this a must own for curious cell phone photographers.
5) Hipstamatic (Free)
This is certainly not the first time that Hipstamatic has been featured on our site and it will not be the last. The great application allows any user to capture fantastic pictures by “swapping various lenses, flashes, and films for hundreds of different effects.”
4 iPhone Photographers To Inspire You On World Photo Day
These five apps should be downloaded by anyone looking to add a little flair to their iPhone photography. That being said, there are plenty of naysayers who do not believe good photos can be taken with an iPhone. So as a second part of this celebration, Resource wanted to highlight four iPhone photographers we’re sure are taking some kick ass photos on World Photo Day.
Ben Lowy – @benlowy (117k followers)
Ben instantly became one of the most important cell phone photographers, when his iPhone photograph of Hurricane Sandy was featured on the November 2012 cover of Time: becoming the first ever cell phone image to be on the cover of that illustrious magazine.
Kevin Lu – @sweatengine (150k followers)
An extremely famous commercial travel photographer, Kevin Lu has shot some incredible images on his simple cellular device. Most importantly, he has used his iPhone skills to beautifully capture the city he is based out of, New York City.
Jonathan Griffith – @jonathangriffith (19k followers)
Jonathan is an extremely talented artist, which is clearly shown in his Instagram and blog photos. Like Lu with New York City, Griffith has used his natural talents to show the beautiful landscape of San Diego.
Austin Mann – @austinmann (3k followers)
Finally, photographer Austin Mann has been traveling all over the world and documenting events, such as the 2014 World Cup, with his gorgeous iPhone images. However, he has also “worked with numerous different non-pro?t organizations, to help them better cast their vision worldwide.”
No matter what type of photography you believe in, this day boils down to all of us collectively saying ‘Happy Birthday’ to the medium that we all fell in love with. Be sure to click through all the Instagram profiles and try out all these helpful applications, which can be downloaded on iTunes. Finally, to submit your photos to the yearly gallery, please visit the World Photo Day submission page.