The iPad for the photographer is maturing. Now in its fourth incarnation there are a number of applications and innovations that are making the iPad a useful tool for the photographer.
Without any extra apps it simply allows you to store your portfolio to show to clients, as the screen is sharp and resolution is high enough to do your images justice.
I’m a photographer outside of my role as Service desk manager and I have selected a few of the apps that I use to enhance my iPad’s capabilities
If the screen isn’t big enough, use an app called ShowTime, which turns your iPad (or iPhone) into a web host. This means that any computer on the same network can view a slideshow controlled by the iPad. I also use it to transfer files either way between a computer and iPad.
Do you need a second screen for editing or showing images?
Air Display means you can work on your laptop and have a battery powered second screen. You can also display the image on the laptop and drag the tool menus onto the iPad, ultimately you can have your own mini-editing suite, wherever you are.
The Eye-Fi SD card enables wireless transfer to a laptop or iPad if your camera doesn’t have wireless capability. A client can then see the images, as you shoot. If, for example, a decision maker isn’t present during the shoot, a screenshot can be sent from the iPad via email, therefore potentially speeding up the work flow. By using the Eye-Fi iOS app, you can send the images to an iPad anywhere in the world.
The only thing that I don’t quite get yet, is the premium you must pay in order to transfer RAW files. Both the Mobile and Pro versions of the card are the same, except you pay extra for the Pro card.
Many image work flow applications now come with iOS apps that allow for varying degrees of iPad integration into the work flow. Some examples of this software are Leaf Capture, Capture One or Phocus. While these can work with most camera models, there are some that are camera specific.
The applications above allow features that range from, just viewing the images as they are taken, to rating the images, activating the shutter, making adjustments to camera settings or checking focus through live view. They also allow for remote internet viewing, if the computer has an internet connection and port forwarding is configured on the router. You can even control studio lights from your computer or iPad if the equipment supports DNX512.
Pro DSLR’s have had the built in capability to transfer images wirelessly for some time, there is now 10/100 Ethernet. The camera manufacturer software can now activate the shutter on up to ten cameras simultaneously.
Light Blue software has a hosted solution so that you don’t need a computer to interact with it. The iPad means you can check, customer details, invoicing, your calendar and to do list on the move and have it sync with your computer.
By using some of these applications, means that the iPad has moved from a gadget that is nice to have, to a useful tool to display your work to customers, control the hardware in your studio, help keep your company paperwork up to date while maintaining your customer relationships.