#176. Art with a Smartphone ?

By pascaljappy | News

Nov 14
La Défense by Night - HTC One

La Défense by Night – HTC One

Recent posts on ol’ Suzie have been dominated by gear talk. The best new camera (Sony A7r), the best new lens (Zeiss OTUS 55/1.4), …

And, at the same time, I’ve been mostly using my HTC One smartphone camera merely as a notebook, as if only the most expensive gear was capable of supporting creative work.

autoportrait of Pascal Jappy in the Paris underground with a HTC One smartphone camera

Selfie in the metro – HTC One

Truth is, it ain’t. And the lowly cellphone camera can be used to great effect as John Paul Caponigro and Dan Burkholder, among others, have shown the world.

So, self-promoting myself into such illustrious company, I present to you – ladies and gentlemen – photos from the Androïd side of the smartphone wall (all from last week-end in Paris). Tatan … 😉

Bringing the Art out of the Smart ;).

Stairs in the tube at St Lazare metro station in Paris, in B&W - HTC One

The tube in St Lazare – HTC One

As usual with online photos … bigger is much better. Be sure to click to enlarge. What do you think ?

Blurred stock exchange - HTC One

Blurred stock exchange – HTC One

Amateur photographers tend to imagine better gear leads to better images.

Better gear does let you enlarge more and tackle more varied situations, but it also standardises the results, requiring a lot more post processing to differentiate one’s photographs from the other’s.


The watchful eye of Enki – HTC One

Whereas if you explore the flaws in your sensor, lens or film, you end up producing consistently original results without falling into the Instagram cookie-cutter filter set.


Come down at once ! – HTC One

Smart phones are not bad cameras. They are nimble, high depth-of-field and high grain cameras. They unobtrusively photograph the parts other gear cannot reach and their simplistic use frees up the photographer’s mind for right brain domination.


Collective migraine – HTC One

Plus, the odd looking files are why I’ll treasure a vintage 50mm Summarit as much as Zeiss’s Magum Otus 55 (grin) if I ever manage to afford it. So next time you’re out shooting, don’t think of your smartphone as a lesser body so much as the polaroid camera or yore, used either as a visual notebook or as a quircky art maker of sorts.


The inner workings of Pizza making (Matters of small concern should be treated seriously) – HTC One


Bread Line – HTC One


Going Red – HTC One

For a related fun picture on smartphones as visual notebooks, take a look at this post on one of the web’s very best Photo blogs : The Online Photographer (bottom picture).


Fall in Manhattan – HTC One

Be seeing you 🙂

  • […] On low contrast, out of focus zones, it’s sometimes like a kindergarten escapee has smeared pastels and watercolours all over the picture. So, jpegs really are a mix of the best there is and an also ran. But if you’re shooting jpegs enough to worry about this, the Sony A7r may not be the camera for you. Today’s smartphones are excellent. […]

  • >