The amazing world of smartphone photography: professional photographers' images (part 1)

The world of photography has changed so profoundly in just the past few years. With smartphone cameras passing a certain threshold, the sheer number of captured images in the world has grown multiple times, and more and more of them gets shared on Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, and so many other venues. It’s hard to say when this transition started to snowball, but to us it seems that the growth of Instagram is a good point of measure.

In this series of articles, we’d be exploring the amazing world of smartphone photography done right by professional photographers. A small disclaimer should be put here to calm down the crowds, as some would start arguing why most of the pictures in this series comes from the iPhone: Apple’s darling seems to be the preferred smartphone camera by an overwhelming amount of professional photographers, and most of them are pretty vocal about not willing to exchange it for anything else.

We start our journey with a series of authors from Eastern Europe, and Russia in particular, but we’ll be looking forward to you sharing your favorite smartphone photographers, and why you love them.

The first author we feature here is Igor Burba, a photographer with some 8 years of professional experience. “Nearly two years ago, I switched to" an iPhone, and this decision was the start of my love of phone photography. … The iPhone is simple, laconic, and many are attracted by its simplicity. Even those people who did not think about taking pictures on a phone, begin to do it on the iPhone. That’s a fact," Burba said for Russian publication Hi-Tech. The photographer also mentioned he is using VSCO Cam for his editing.

"Mostly, I take pictures in the art-portrait style. Sadness, and a meditative, melancholic feeling are the dominant mood in my shots. But sometimes, when I take pictures of couples, I do encourage them to smile and have more fun," Burba said.

Finally, when asked whether he’s willing to change his iPhone for something else, he answers with a resounding ‘no’: "Everyone loves what Steve came up with." Well, that’s his personal opinion, and judging by his pictures, he has a solid reason to be happy with his gadget. Take a look at them right below.



1. Ninetysix

Posts: 2964; Member since: Oct 08, 2012

Good article. Angry posts from lagdroids incoming in 3 2 1...

11. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Shhhh. Almost all my friends who use iPhone say that the camera is one thing that they really don't like on the iPhones :p

26. darkkjedii

Posts: 31034; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Art, seriously dude, people here won't believe that. The iPhone camera is consistently ranked near the top, and compared against the very best out there. I highly doubt "almost all your friends" are saying they don't like, yet staying with it.

33. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Yup Jedi, face the truth. That's what they say. I mean they like it otherways but they simply hate the low resolution. One of my friends (iPhone 6, huge apple fan) even said that the rear camera is pure s**t XD

34. AlikMalix unregistered

That's funny, because all my friends who use iPhones say that the camera is best - an are very happy with consistent results...

43. tuminatr

Posts: 1123; Member since: Feb 23, 2009

I have an Iphone 5s and a Note 4 the note 4 takes much better photos. Maybe the Iphone 6 is closer to the Note 4 but I don’t know. Also just like me if you don’t have the comparison you may think what you have is great. Personally I think it’s dumb for a professional photographer to use a cell phone regardless of brand

46. machello

Posts: 35; Member since: May 03, 2013

"Almost all my friends"???? Must be 3 at the most I guess. Me myself and I........ Complete trolling as Always.

21. bur60

Posts: 981; Member since: Jul 07, 2014

Good article indeed, very nice that ppl can edit pictures so good that even iphone pics look amazing. thats some real skill.

35. AlikMalix unregistered


39. kent-gaga

Posts: 609; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

the fifth one was not taken with an iPhone, or pretty much any phone look how the background and foreground objects are blurred it's at least taken with a high-end pns camera that has larger sensor and lenses

8. TreyTreyTaylor

Posts: 728; Member since: Dec 21, 2010

What are people calling people out for on smartphone website? Just post your opinion and keep it moving. Why do we have to be losers every damn day? Rant Over. Beautiful pictures.

9. Nexus4lifes

Posts: 294; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

frankly those picture's quality is not great and definitely not up to the professional standard...

12. saucexD

Posts: 62; Member since: Jan 20, 2015

Go home youre drunk

29. tedkord

Posts: 17356; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

He's right. Some are nice. Some are over dark. Of course, art is subjective.

41. saucexD

Posts: 62; Member since: Jan 20, 2015

There is no standard for art, only understanding and admiration.

14. RajRicardo

Posts: 495; Member since: Feb 28, 2014

You must be watching them on a 240p screen...I am a Z3 user and I must say those pics looks fantastic. VSCO Cam is also damn neat.

36. AlikMalix unregistered

What if, same photos and they said it was Samsungs, or some other Windows or Android device? I bet this article would be a complete opposite... I bet...

10. TreyTreyTaylor

Posts: 728; Member since: Dec 21, 2010

What's the professional standard? Who's professional standard are you referring to? They're not perfect, but do you really deny they aren't good smartphone pics?

13. Be_Mine

Posts: 257; Member since: Dec 29, 2013

Editing is just as Important. The above images are proof of it.

23. saucexD

Posts: 62; Member since: Jan 20, 2015

Obviously. If anyone knows anything about photography, most of a photographers work is done on the computer. Most of his/hers hours are at home spent editing. Just like the future versions of this articals when they find photographers who use other phones that arent iPhones.

40. euklidis

Posts: 34; Member since: Oct 08, 2013

Not true, depending on the type of photos you are shooting. Street Photograph needs no photoshop. Press photography restricts editing other than brightnes and contrast. Smartphones are not a replacement for our DSLRs in anyway. The Quality, the digital noise levels and our optics are nowhere near the camera phone out there. These type of articles are simple ads of Apple and nothing more. Noone stopped shooting with his SLR or DSLR in order to start using an iphone. Sorryyyyyyyyy

42. saucexD

Posts: 62; Member since: Jan 20, 2015

I never said they are, fanboy. Coming from 6 years of full time photography experience I would know, as well as EVERY other photographer. If you dont KNOW that post production is a chunk of a photographers work, then I have news for you bud.

15. afzalzainal

Posts: 63; Member since: Feb 17, 2013

A pros knows how to handle diff sensor. But when he said " no " to others brands .. That a normal photographer .

16. arjunezdaz

Posts: 32; Member since: Nov 30, 2014

nothing great....lets wait for some awesome pics from some awesome android phones

17. seven7dust unregistered

it's all about software , iPhone has a good camera casue of all the software expertise since the early OSX days. Apple had some of the best photo editing technology since early 2000s when they introcued iPhoto on Mac OSX , most people don't even know that, even Apeture has some cool technology. the algorithms they use to enhance photos while taking a shot in most lighting conditions are the more preffesional than sony ,Htc etc.. only samsung is able to compete with them on some level, but I'm not a fan of their accuracy.

19. Damo579

Posts: 264; Member since: May 18, 2013

iPhone camera is good but not as good as a Lumia 930/1520, especially with Denim.

18. wando77

Posts: 1168; Member since: Aug 23, 2012

Somebody give this turkey a note 4

24. saucexD

Posts: 62; Member since: Jan 20, 2015

Prettt sure he chose the iPhone over Note 4 for a reason... Lolol.

30. tedkord

Posts: 17356; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Most likely because he never tried the Note 4.

20. Dee79

Posts: 307; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

No DOF no thanks. Standard flat images, I won't be trading my DSLR anytime soon. Also smartphone cameras need quicker low light shutter speeds, or even decent low light at least. zenon flash would be good with lazer focus and a led on board for video even tho I don't like led video lights on mobiles, they create a dirty image and eyes turn white now and then.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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