Tag Archives: autostitch

Hockney, Kandinsky and Escher walk into an app… (or Adventures in Autostitch).

A few days ago (blimey, only that? feels ages ago…) I tweeted a couple of pictures from a dental surgery in a converted church saying that I loved the app when it broke because of the geometry of what you’re pointing the camera at…

… and team Autostitch tweeted me back saying that they prefer the app when it doesn’t break.

<blockquote lang=”en”><p><a href=”https://twitter.com/Kercal”>@Kercal</a> That’s strange, we don’t like it when it breaks. Maybe we need a special mode that does this on purpose?</p>&mdash; AutoStitch Panorama (@AutoStitch) <a href=”https://twitter.com/AutoStitch/statuses/444175921239425025″>March 13, 2014</a></blockquote>
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The thing is, it’s the accidents that make it for me. If I want an app that you slowly pan from left to right to get a picture that looks like a normal panorama every single time, that’s what I’ll go for. Autostitch occasionally snaps and that gives you all sorts of oddnesses which is just the way I like it πŸ™‚ Would it be better if the accidents were planned or there was an inbuilt abstract mode? Possibly… but it’s the joy of the discovery that makes it all the more special imo.

… and my personal favourite: the Cyber Giraffe (also known as the Eiffel Tower).

I also photographed the one below although wish I’d had the 5S at the time (the one above and below were on a 4S). Would love to have see how the image below could have come out in higher resolution…

(like the one below for example…)

So there you go: breaking an app to get something akin to a drunken mashup of artists portfolios πŸ™‚ Love it.

A bit of blather on mobile digital photography.

I’ve just swapped from a Samsung Galaxy S4 to an iPhone 5S and for one reason only. The camera.

(The Devils Giraffe, iPhone 4S + Autostitch. Blogged about here: http://kercal.wibsite.com/2013/10/13/paris/)

To be fair the GS4 is a great phone. The screen is very good, I appreciate the larger viewing size too, I loved the flip cover allowing me to see the time and certain information without accessing the main features of the device and so on. It rarely stuttered at the pictures I was drawing, even with Photoshop Touch which at times (hallo large size – semi transparent brush) is known to stop and think.

But the camera. No. Just no. Didn’t work for me. Slow, cumbersome, occasionally great shots but far more frequent missed or blurry ones. I was heartened at one point to find an app I love to bits – Autostitch – on Android and they saddened to see how clumsy it was in comparison to the Apple phones camera and ecosystem. Honestly – I’m not a fanboy for any company… My favourite tablet at the moment is a Surface Pro or a Tesco Hudl and my favourite phone would be a Samsung GS4 with an S Pen running something closer to iOS or Metro.

That said when Apple get it right – oh boy they do. The industrial design (can Sir Jony really only be knighted once?) is second to none (although again, the Surface is a very well designed tablet and arguably iOS 7 owes a good few nods to Metro) and the iOS app store ecosystem remains a league ahead.

Now I’m back on iOS devices I waddled through the mud to get to a place I’m fond of photographing: an electricity pylon slap bang in a field. That said anything geometrically repetitive makes me want to whip out the panorama apps (see the Eiffel Tower at the beginning of the blog post) but the pylon, so far, has been good to me*.

Last year I photographed it on iPhone 4S:and yesterday I photographed it on iPhone 5S:The clarity and definition on the 5S is obviously exactly what I was hoping to see. The lack of colour is down to Global Weirding rather than the lens. I look forward to popping back and snapping away when it’s sunny.

Like a complete nitwit (I left the house in a bit of a hurry to get photographing) I forgot my Ollocip but this was Olloclip on 4S and I’ll post a comparison pic when able later:(update: Olloclip pic taken with 5S:I also photographed the pylon using Boinx’ lovely You Gotta See This app…


5S:Less of a noticeable difference, if any, but I suspect that the app drops the resolution down to a set amount in order to capture the pictures it does. I’d love to see an update to it to take into account the faster processing speed and better lens though.

*Obviously I’m cautious around electricity and metal and so on, and I certainly don’t advise anyone to do this. Generally I let people know where I’m going to be or go with a friend. Apart from standing near to the pylon I don’t do anything that silly or dangerous and hope that nobody sees this as something to copy in anything other than sensible ways, if at all.

Dell Solutions tour, London.

Latest in the lovely series of places that I get to draw in has been the Dell Solutions tour who invited me up to draw on the tablets that will be released between late November and early December… (the fact that my tablet art class are getting itchy fingers for new hardware is also possible an interest to them, but I think my budget’s well shot for this year as we’ve had to expand the class again and subsequently buy new hardware).

But I was asked to join in, and it was on my day off, so it seemed like an interesting place to be… The venue being Stamford Bridge, home of Chelsea FC. I’m partial to a bit of football, although don’t have any team allegiance really, but I liked the idea of seeing the stadium.

Anyway I was impressed, both by the stadium and by all of the four machines I got to draw on. One machine (the Venue) was a corker. Handled every stylus I threw at it. The only negative was that the machines were set up with no art software bar Paint so I didn’t get to play with Fresh Paint on the screens πŸ™ But, again, another meeting sorted out for the class and I to play with a couple more screens and screen sizes.

Started out a very nice day, weather wise. Started raining shortly after which has kept going for four days solid now πŸ™‚

The journey was slow, hot, sweaty and from one packed train to another. The coffee was needed as soon as I arrived and signed in. Painted on (as are the Frog and abstract face) MS Paint app as it was the only thing installed… Using a variety of styli (Dagi, Nomad, New Trent, three or four cheap ebay jobs, Plai eStylo and Pogo).

(drawn by request πŸ™‚ )

Yes. I know, two from a competing platform… It was just what I had in my bag at the time and my Surface was completely out of juice πŸ™ Would have happily drawn the sessions (Intel on Ideas and Microsoft on Procreate) on a Dell tablet but they all seemed to be chained to tables and I couldn’t find anyone to rescue one for me to play with πŸ™‚

This was my favourite machine… A Venue (?) but didn’t get the model number. Due for release at the end of Nov I think they said and ran Win 8.1 more than happily.

((A brief aside – if you want to know the most about a machine you should always give it to an artist. I don’t think I can think of anyone who pushed the processor, screen, software and hardware as much. From quick zooming to a range of input devices to constant screen interaction I think screen painters find the nooks and crannies of tablets and touch screen devices quicker than anyone else…))

And then I had to dash off… (before lunch even!! πŸ™ ) Had to be back for the school bus so had to leave but, as I was doing so, I realised I’d not taken any pictures of the stadium so that turned into this:

And my personal favourite:

… because (at the risk of being boring) I like software that gives you the possibility to break a panorama as well as take it… Architecture that has a lot of related paths and repeated themes often gives the best results (for example here and here also…) Will try and get to stadiums in the future I think… Was a lot of fun to snap. As was the day, thanks Dell πŸ™‚

Paris! Holiday photos with an ‘appy spin.

A few weeks ago I travelled to Paris with my lovely wife and managed to take a few pictures while there. Had gone with the intention of being as screen-less as possible and just do as much talking as we could manage because this was our first escape without kids for a long old time.

That said, I couldn’t resist taking a few photos around the place and, true to form, they’re odd and weird pictures πŸ™‚ Apps and cameras do go together particularly well sometimes…

Β Flea market book stall.

View from Montparnasse tower.

The Eiffel Tower at night, in the rain.

And the obligatory ‘yum’ picture.

All pictures taken on an iPhone 4S (yes, I would love a 5S but not just yet… πŸ™ ) The top three pictures (and the two below) using Autostitch app which I love a significant amount.

…and my two favourites below – the sad and the slightly happier Giraffe. Basically an Autostitch of a number of pictures including a couple of Autostitch results. I could almost hear the iPhone crying as I asked it to process the resulting images.

The Eiffel Tower was a marvel at night, beautifully lit, imposing and majestic whereas earlier when we had seen it on a cold grey rainy morning it has seemed small and unimportant. It did allow me to take a couple of pictures amongst the raindrops but the Giraffe’s remain my favourite of the weekend.

Β iPhone 4S and Boinx You Gotta See This app.

Back to Autostitch.

Anyway, since the last time I was in Paris was for the Hockney Fresh Flowers exhibition and I had enjoyed everything of the day except Paris itself it was a lovely, and much needed, break in a city that revealed itself to be as wonderful and charming as I had hoped it would be. Would love to return, not for a while though… But as an Anniversary present to ourselves it was an absolute corker πŸ™‚


LMUG photo walk…

Went on a photo walk on Saturday. Was a lovely time πŸ™‚

Started at the Churchill Arms in Notting Hill, walked to Earl’s Court for the Great British Beer Festival, marred mainly by the fact that, as it was the last day, a LOT of beer had run out (which was more than a good deal of the audience could do – ba doom tish). Then it was away to the Gosh comics opening (sadly missing the Dave McKean signing but always lovely to see some of his artwork on show and finally off to Chin Chin Labs, one of my favouritist places on the planet. Liquid Nitrogen ice cream? Yes please. I always have the special (which on Saturday was Basil Choc Chip. Yum, honestly).

Anyhow: couple of sample pics and moreΒ here:Β http://www.flickr.com/photos/56759148@N00/sets/72157627254828691/