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The Best Camera

Posted on Thursday, January 18th, 2018

Dave!Back in 2009 photographer Chase Jarvis released an iPhone app called "The Best Camera" which was the "Instagram" of its day. It allowed you to do things like crop your photos, apply filters to them, and easily share them on social media... things all the photo apps can do now, but back then it was fairly revolutionary. Along with the app, he also released a book called The Best Camera is the One That's With You. I never read the book, but the title and the philosophy behind it changed the way I look at photography. Essentially Chase was saying that you don't need a big, expensive camera to be a good photographer, and talent will shine through regardless of what you're using.

Until that point, I kind of dismissed the camera on my iPhone. Sure I used it, but never for anything serious. And I ended up missing out on a lot of photo opportunities because of it. "Why bother taking a photo if I don't have my real camera with me?" But after getting "The Best Camera" app and buying into the idea that I could take good photos with it, all that changed. This lead to me getting some spectacular shots that I never would have thought possible with a phone. Like this one...

Wenatchee River Fall Colors

"The Best Camera" app eventually collapsed into stagnation and was killed (the story of which is an interesting read), but I took its ideals to heart, and it's a philosophy I believe in to this day (thanks, Chase!).

Of course, smart phone cameras are leagues better now than they were in 2009. As is my attitude towards them. I gave up on carrying a pocket camera when I got my iPhone 6 because the photos I was getting were pretty great. Then I started snapping photos of anything and everything.

But mostly my cats.

Before I left for vacation back in December, the last photo I took was this one as I was saying goodbye to Jake and Jenny. Snapping photos with my iPhone is so automatic that I don't even remember taking it...

Good Bye Jake and Jenny

Then while I was on vacation, the best camera that was with me was not my iPhone... it was my Sony DSLR, which meant my iPhone spent most of its time in my pocket.

And now that I'm back?

The Best Camera is taking photos of grilled cheese and tofu bacon sandwich.

Good Bye Jake and Jenny

You're welcome.

Categories: Photography 2018Click To It: Permalink


  1. Matt Westergard says:

    I surely wrestle with what photography means in this day amd age. I love my MILC (my “real camera”), but damn a smart phone is convenient, and it’s “always with you”.

    What will we be talking about in ten years? Optically implanted cameras? Will those be “real cameras”?

    First world problems


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