Phones & Photoshop

A couple of days ago, I posted about our trip to Texas de Brazil, our local awesome Brazilian steakhouse. I put up pictures I took with my cameraphone. Scott has since then sent me pictures from his own phone, so I thought it’d be interesting to compare the quality.

Here’s the picture I posted of my salad bar choices:

It doesn’t look awful, but it’s not all that great. And this took an extensive amount of tinkering in Photoshop — mainly adjusting levels and color balance. So for the sake of comparison, here’s the same picture, without any tinkering, taken by my HTC G1:

The light wasn’t great in the restaurant, but we were in probably the most well-lit place (I’ve tried taking pictures in there before; the “mood lighting” makes everything dark and red). I had my back to the big wine room, which added a little more light.

But Scott also let me take a picture with his phone, which has a flash! Well, it’s not the brightest flash in the world — mainly just a gentle little bulb that turns on at the exact right time … which I guess is something that could be loosely defined as a “flash”. Anyhoo, here’s the picture from his camera, again without any tinkering:

The salad items look great, with true-to-life colors. However, the flash made a hot spot, and the more distant items (like the bowl of amazing lobster bisque) are much darker. I tried adjusting this image in Photoshop, and there’s no way for me to neatly balance everything out. Bringing the soup up in brightness washes out the salads.

Despite the sharpness of Scott’s picture, I think I prefer what came out of my camera. Sure it needed some tweaking, but most pictures do. It’s weird — when taking them, I thought I’d like his pictures more. I guess I’m just a flash-off kind of girl; after all, I leave my point-and-shoot flash turned off, and only use it maybe 5% of the time.

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