Create Professional-Looking Images with Your Phone

Something pretty amazing happened the other day...

You may know that in addition to my photography, I am also a custom picture framer with a retail store where I show my work. The major part of my income in the shop comes from framing other folks’ memories -- anything from Muhammed Ali’s boxing gloves to a poster from a music concert.

Recently I received an email from a longtime customer in a bit of a dilemma. Here’s what he said:

“This past summer at Cape Cod I took a series of photos from our rooftop in hopes of creating a panoramic photo of the view. This was not the ideal way to take such a photo but I made do with what I had. Is there anything that you guys could do to help color match all the photos (some angles had better sun than others) and perhaps blend the seams together better?”

The real dilemma: All he had with him that day was his Android smart phone. No fancy gear, no tripod, just a smart phone to capture the memory. I loved the challenge! There is an old saying that the best camera is the one you have with you. So true!

I loaded the five photos into Lightroom and then asked the program to “merge to panorama” in Photoshop. A few minutes and some tweaking later, the finished panorama came back into Lightroom where I treated it as though it were one of my fine art photos.

I adjusted the white balance, increased the clarity, deepened the blacks, and even added a gradient for the sky to bring out the blue and add more contrast to the clouds. In short, I did whatever I felt the image required.

Then I made a print four feet long and eight inches high using Epson Ultrachrome inks on Premium Lustre paper -- again, just as I would do with my own photos.

The result? Amazing! Simply amazing! I would have been proud to hang the print in my gallery.

The customer purchased four of the prints on paper, and I printed another “special edition” on real canvas for his family. The canvas gave it a lovely painterly quality. We then stretched and framed it. This is a shot of me holding the final piece:

And here it is up-close:

Pretty incredible that you can create professional-looking images with a phone these days.

[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]

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