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Taking and Editing Photos On Your iPhone 4 or iPad 2

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Your Apple iPhone 4 or iPad 2 device has both a front- and rear-facing camera that can be used to shoot photos or videos in a wide range of situations. Jason R. Rich explains how to fully utilize the cameras built into your iPhone or iPad to capture stunning digital images wherever you happen to be, and then edit those images using powerful yet inexpensive apps.
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With the front- and back-facing cameras built into your Apple iPhone 4 or iPad 2, you have the ability to take full-color and rather high-resolution photos while on the go that are pretty comparable to what you'd be able to shoot with a basic point-and-shoot digital camera.

The Camera app that's built into your iPhone 4 or iPad 2 is used to snap the photos. However, you can edit the images using a wide range of different third-party apps, and then view and share your images using the Photos app that comes preinstalled on your phone or tablet.

There are lots of kinds of personal photos you can take, such as your kids, what happens on your vacation, time spent with your closest friends, or what transpires at a special event or party you're planning to attend. However, the ability to snap clear photos using your iPhone or iPad may also be useful in your professional life.

A photo that's stored on your iPhone or iPad can be linked to an entry in your contacts database when using the Contacts app on your device, as shown in Figure 1. This photo will then automatically appear on your iPhone when making an outgoing call or receiving and incoming call from that person.

Figure 1 You can associate a photo with each contact entry within the Contacts app on your iPhone or iPad. (Shown here is the Contacts app on the iPad 2.)

Or if you use a database management program on your iPhone or iPad, such as Things, Bento, or FileMaker Go, you can snap photos of products, items, real estate, or anything else for that matter, and then link those images to entries within your database.

Your choice of photos can also be displayed as the wallpaper image on your device's Lock Screen and Home Screen, or you can utilize the Slide Show option offered from your iPad's Lock Screen and transform your tablet into a digital photo frame while it's sitting on your desk and otherwise not in use.

Using the Camera App

The Camera app that comes preinstalled on your iPhone 4 or iPad 2 is pretty straightforward in terms of its use. Once launched, the main area of your device's screen serves as the camera's viewfinder. What you see on the screen is what will be captured within your image when you tap the Shutter Button icon, which is located at the bottom-center of the screen.

In the upper-right corner of the screen is the camera selection icon. Tap on it to switch between the front and back-facing cameras on your iPhone 4 or iPad 2. Located in the lower-right corner of the screen is the still camera/video camera switch. Tap on it to switch between shooting still digital images and video footage. You will notice that the look of the shutter button changes when you switch between these two shooting modes.

On the iPhone 4, two additional command icons are displayed on the viewfinder screen when using the Camera app in still photo mode. In the upper-left corner is the Auto icon. This can be turned on or off. When turned on, the app determines whether or not the iPhone 4's built-in flash will be used when snapping a photo if additional light is needed.

To the right of the Auto icon is the HDR On/Off icon. This allows you to switch the camera's High Dynamic Range feature on or off when using the back-facing camera on the device. In some situations, using this feature allows the iPhone 4's camera to shoot clearer and more detailed photos. When the HDR feature is switched on, it forces the camera to simultaneously snap three images at different exposures, and then combine those images to create a single image with an increased dynamic range.

Whenever you use the HDR feature, your iPhone 4 will store two versions of each image shot: one normal version of the photo and one that utilized the HDR feature. This allows you to choose the best one when you look at your photos using the Photos app.

While looking at your subject through your viewfinder (the iPhone or iPad's screen), tap anywhere on the screen to focus in on a specific item, object, or area within the photo. Upon doing this, a zoom slider will also appear along the bottom of the screen, whether you're holding your device vertically or horizontally.

As you're taking still images, using your finger, move the slider to the right to zoom in on your subject or to the left to zoom out. When you're ready, tap the shutter button icon to take a photo.

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