iPad mini For Dummies, 3rd Edition (2015)
Part III. The Multimedia iPad mini
Chapter 9. Photography on a Larger Scale
In This Chapter
Importing your pictures
Viewing and admiring pictures
Creating a slideshow
Working with pictures even more
Deleting your photos
Hamming it up in Photo Booth
Throughout this book, we sing the praises of the iPad mini’s vibrant multitouch display. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more appealing smallish screen for watching movies or playing games. As you might imagine, the iPad you have recently purchased (or are lusting after) is also a spectacular photo viewer. Images are crisp and vivid, at least those that you shot properly. (C’mon, we know Ansel Adams is a distant cousin.)
What’s more, you can shoot some of those pictures directly with your prized tablet. The reasons, of course, are the front (FaceTime) and rear (iSight) cameras built into the device. If you read Chapter 8, you already know you can put those cameras to work capturing video. In this chapter, you get the big picture on shooting still images.
Okay, we need to get a couple of things out of the way: The iPad may never be the most comfortable substitute for a point-and-shoot digital camera, much less a pricey digital SLR. As critics, we can quibble about the fact that no flash is included. And shooting can be awkward.
But we’re here, friends, to focus on the positive. And having cameras on your iPad mini may prove to be a godsend when no better option is available. In Chapter 8, we tell you about the capability to capture full high-definition video up to what techies refer to as the 1080p standard.
In this chapter, we point out other optical enhancements in the most recent iPad minis. All iPad minis have a 5-megapixel iSight camera with backside illumination, an ƒ/2.4 aperture, and a five-element lens. Among other features, they have a hybrid infrared filter like what you’d find on an SLR, which helps lead to more uniform colors. And face detection makes sure the balance and focus are just right for up to ten faces on the screen.
All these features are photographer-speak for potentially snapping darn sweet pictures.
And we can think of certain circumstances — selling real estate, say, or shopping for a new home — where tablet cameras are quite convenient.
Apple has also made finding the pictures in your stash an easier task, too, with an organizational structure in iOS 7 and iOS 8 that arranges photos in the Photos app by collections, moments, and years.
Meanwhile, you’re in for a real treat if you’re new to Photo Booth, a yuk-it-up Mac program that is also on the iPad mini. That may be the best, or at least the most fun, use of the cameras yet.
We get to Photo Booth at the end of this chapter. But over the next few pages, you discover the best ways to make the digital photos on the mini come alive, no matter how they managed to arrive on your machine.
You can start shooting pictures on the iPad mini in a few ways. So we’re going to cut to the chase immediately:
1. Fire up the camera itself. Choose one of the following:
· On the Home screen, tap the Camera app icon.
· From the lock screen, drag the Camera icon from the bottom-right corner in an upward motion.
· Drag Control Center up from the bottom of the screen and tap the Camera app icon.
· Ask Siri (read Chapter 14) to open the Camera app for you.
However you get here, your iPad has turned into the tablet equivalent of a Kodak Instamatic, minus the film, of course, and in a form factor that is obviously much bigger. The near-8-inch screen on the iPad mini provides a pretty sweet viewfinder.
If you’re using a version of iOS prior to iOS 7 with your iPad, make sure the switch at the bottom-right corner of the screen is set to camera mode rather than video mode.
2. Keep your eyes peeled on the iPad mini display, and use the viewfinder to frame your image.
3. Select a shooting format:
· Photo: Think snapshot.
· Square: This gives you a picture formatted to make nice with the popular Instagram photo-sharing app.
· Pano (mini 2 or mini 3 models only): Short for panorama, this shooting mode lets you capture epic vistas.
· Video or Time Lapse: We kindly refer you to Chapter 8.
You move from one format to another by swiping up or down along the right edge of the screen so that the format you’ve chosen is highlighted in yellow, with a yellow dot next to it.
4. Snap your image:
· Tap the white round camera button. The button is at the middle-right edge of the screen whether you are holding the iPad mini in portrait mode or landscape mode (see Figure 9-1). As we show you in a moment, you’ll be able to change the point of focus if necessary.
· Press the physical volume up or volume down button. These buttons are on the side of the tablet (portrait mode) or at the top of the device (landscape mode). Just be careful not to cover the lens with your fingers.
The image you shoot lands in the Camera Roll album, in the lower-right corner of the screen. We explain what you can do with the images on the iPad later in this chapter.
Figure 9-1: Using the iPad as a camera.
Here are some tips for working with the Camera app:
· Adjust the focal point. Tap the portion of the screen in which you see the face or object you want as the image’s focal point. A small rectangle (not shown in Figure 9-1) surrounds your selection, and the iPad mini automatically adjusts the exposure and focus of that part of the image. The camera in the iPad can detect up to ten faces in a picture. Behind the scenes, the camera is balancing the exposure across each face. If you want to lock the focus and exposure settings while taking a picture, press and hold your finger against the screen until the rectangle pulses. AE/AF Lock will appear. Tap the screen again to make AE/AF Lock disappear.
Next to the focus box is a sun icon. When that sunny exposure icon is visible, drag your finger up or down against the screen to increase or decrease the brightness in a scene. And you can lighten or darken scenes for both still photos and video.
· Zoom in or out. Tap the screen with two fingers and spread (unpinch) to zoom in or pinch to zoom out.
The iPad has a 5X digital zoom, which basically crops and resizes an image. Such zooms are nowhere near as effective quality-wise as optical zooms on many digital cameras. Be aware that zooming works only with the rear camera still in camera mode; it doesn’t work with the front camera or when you shoot video.
· See grid lines to help you compose your picture. Tap Settings⇒Photos & Camera⇒Camera and tap the Grid switch to turn it on (the switch turns green). Grid lines can help you frame a shot using the photographic principle known as the rule of thirds.
· Toggle between the front and rear cameras. Tap the front/rear camera icon (refer to Figure 9-1) in the upper-right corner of the screen.
The front camera is of lower quality than its rear cousin. But the front camera is more than adequate for the kinds of demands you put on it, including FaceTime and Photo Booth. You can say the same for older iPads.
· Shoot in HDR. To exploit HDR (high dynamic range) photography, tap the HDR icon. The HDR feature takes three separate exposures (long, normal, short) and blends the best parts of the three shots into a single image. In Settings (under Photos & Camera), you can choose to keep the normal photo along with your HDR result or just hang on to the latter.
· Burst out. In the blink of an eye, burst mode on the iPad can capture a burst of pictures — up to ten continuous images per second. Just keep your finger pressed against the camera button to keep on capturing those images. This feature works with the front FaceTime camera and the rear iSight camera.
· Capture panoramas. If you’re traveling to San Francisco, you’ll want a picture of the magnificent span that is the Golden Gate Bridge. In the Himalayas, you’d want a memento of Mount Everest. At a family reunion, you want that epic image of your entire extended clan. For just such moments, we recommend the panorama feature, which lets you shoot up to 240 degrees and stitch together a high-resolution image of up to 43 megapixels. This feature is not available on the original iPad mini.
To get going, drag the screen so that Pano becomes your shooting mode of choice. The word Pano will be in yellow, just to the right of the yellow dot and below the camera button. Position the phone so it’s at the starting point and tap the camera button when you’re ready. Slowly and steadily pan in the direction of the arrow. (Tap the arrow if you prefer panning in the opposite direction.) Try to keep the arrow just above the yellow horizontal line. When the task is complete, you can admire your handiwork.
· Geotag your photos. The mini is pretty smart when it comes to geography. Turn on Location Services (in Settings under Privacy) and the specific location settings for the camera appear in Settings. Pictures you take with the mini’s cameras are geotagged, or identified by where they were shot.
Think long and hard before permitting images to be geotagged if you plan on sharing those images with people from whom you want to keep your address and other locations private — especially if you plan on sharing the photos online.
· Use the self-timer: Many physical cameras have a self-timer that lets you be part of a picture, perhaps in a group setting with friends. The new self-timer built into the Camera app in iOS 8 adds this functionality to your iPad, whether you’re using the front or rear camera. If anything, the addition of the self-timing feature might improve the quality of your selfies.
Tap the timer icon (labeled in Figure 9-1) and choose 3 seconds or 10 seconds as the time interval between when you press the camera button and when the picture is captured. You’ll see a countdown on the screen leading up to that moment, and then the iPad will capture a burst of ten images. (You can keep all ten photos, none, or a number in between.) To turn off the self-timer, tap the Off button. Couldn’t be easier than that.
Of course, you’re not always going to use your iPad mini to take pictures. Fortunately, you can add pictures to your prized tablet in several other ways. Alas, one of these methods involves buying an accessory. We zoom in in the following sections.
We devote an entire chapter (see Chapter 3) to synchronizing data with the iPad mini, so we don’t dwell on it here. But we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention it in this chapter. (The assumption in this section is that you already know how to get pictures onto your computer.)
When the iPad is connected to your computer, click the Photos tab on the iPad Device page in iTunes on the Mac or PC. Then select a source from the Sync Photos From pop-up menu.
On a Mac, you can sync photos (and videos) via iPhoto software version 6.06 or later and Aperture 3.02 or later. On a PC, you can sync with Adobe Photoshop Elements 8.0 or later. Alternatively, with both computers, you can sync with any folder that contains pictures.
Connecting a digital camera or memory card
Almost all the digital cameras we’re aware of come with a USB cable that you can use to transfer images to a computer. Of course, the iPad mini isn’t a regular computer, and it isn’t equipped with a USB port, nor does it have a memory card slot.
Instead, Apple sells separate ($29 each) Lightning–to–USB camera adapter and Lightning–to–SD card camera reader cables for more recent iPad models, including the minis. These solutions work as follows:
1. Connect your camera to your iPad, using one of the two aforementioned connectors.
If you’re going the USB route, kindly use the cable that comes with your camera because no such cable comes with Apple’s kit.
2. Make sure that the iPad is unlocked.
3. If you haven’t already done so, turn on the camera and ensure that it’s set to transfer pictures.
Consult the manual that came with the camera if you’re unsure which setting to use.
The Photos app on the iPad opens and displays the pictures that you can import from the camera.
4. Tap Import All to select the entire bunch, or tap the individual pictures you want to include if you’d rather cherry-pick.
A check mark appears next to each image you select. And that’s pretty much it: The iPad organizes the pictures into albums and such, as we describe later in this chapter.
At this point, you’re free to erase the pictures from your camera.
The SD card reader connector accommodates the SD memory cards common to so many digital camera models. The procedure works almost identically to the USB connector, except that you’re inserting the SD gizmo into the Lightning connector port rather than the USB connector mentioned previously. Just be careful to insert the SD gently to prevent any damage.
The Lightning connectors support many common photo formats, including JPEG and Raw. The latter is a format favored by photo enthusiasts.
The USB connector can be used with certain USB computer keyboards, MIDI keyboards, microphones, and even some USB memory card readers. Our advice: it never hurts to try.
Saving images from emails and the web
You can save many of the pictures that arrive in emails or pictures that you come across on the web easily: Just press and hold down your finger against the image, and then tap Save Image when the menu pops up a second later. Pictures are stored in the Camera Roll album we get to shortly. You can also tap Copy to paste said image into another app on your device.
Tracking Down Your Pictures
So where exactly do your pictures live on the iPad mini? We just gave some of the answer away; the images you snap on the device first land in a photo album appropriately dubbed Camera Roll.
In the Photos or Camera app — you can get to the former by tapping a thumbnail image in the latter — you’ll also find pictures you’ve shared with friends and they’ve shared with you through the iCloud photo-sharing feature. The photos you imported are readily available too and are grouped in the same albums they were in on the computer.
Moreover, as part of iOS 8, every picture you take with your iPad (and other iOS 8 devices) can be stored in a new iCloud photo library. You can access any of these pics if you have a Wi-Fi or cellular connection to the Internet. No more fretting about images hogging too much storage space on your tablet. What’s more, the pictures are stored in the cloud at their full resolution in their original formats. (Apple will leave behind versions that are ideally sized for your tablet.)
You can still download to the iPad images that you want available when you’re not connected to cyberspace.
In this section, we show you not only where to find these pictures but also how to display them and share them with others — and how to dispose of the duds that don’t measure up to your lofty photographic standards.
Get ready to literally get your fingers on the pics (without having to worry about smudging them). Open the Photos app by tapping its icon on the Home screen or by going through the Camera app. Then take a gander at the trio of buttons at the bottom of the screen: Photos, Shared, Albums, as shown in Figure 9-2. We take these on one by one.
Figure 9-2: Camera Roll tops your list of albums.
Tapping Albums lists all the albums you have on your iPad, with your camera roll (refer to Figure 9-2) at the upper left. Apple has kindly supplied additional premade albums: Panoramas, for all the panoramic scenes you’ve captured (on other devices), Bursts for, well, your burst pictures, Videos (shooting videos is described in Chapter 8), and Recently Deleted, to give you a chance to recover any images that were accidentally given the heave-ho. Apple also displays the number of days before those pictures are permanently gone.
Albums that were synced from your Mac carry the From My Mac tag. These include the Events album and the Faces album, which used to have dedicated buttons in iOS, but no more. Another album that used to have its own dedicated button is Places.
Tap an album listing to open it. When you do, you see the minimalistic interface shown in Figure 9-3, which reveals the by-now-familiar Camera Roll album.
Figure 9-3: Digging into the camera roll.
Browse the thumbnails until you find the picture or video you want, and then tap it. We soon show you all the cool things you can do from there.
You’ll know when a thumbnail represents a video rather than a still image because the thumbnail displays a tiny movie camera icon accompanied by the length of the video. Or you’ll see a hatched circle, which represents video captured using the time lapse feature, a topic reserved for Chapter 8.
Meanwhile, you can tell whether a photo is part of a burst binge in a couple ways. The first way is exposed here in the camera roll. The thumbnail that represents this sequence of shots will appear as though it’s sitting on a stack of photos. (You’ll see this thumbnail stack also when you come to collections view in the Photos app; we describe collections shortly.) Tap the thumbnail now. In the second way, the word Burst appears in the upper left of an image you’ve opened, with a numerical count of burst photos in parentheses.
If you can’t locate the thumbnail for a photo you have in mind, flick up or down to scroll through the pictures rapidly, or use a slower dragging motion to pore through the images more deliberately. We’re certain you’ll find the one you’re looking for soon enough.
To return to the list of albums, tap Albums at the upper-left corner of the screen. After backing out, you can create an album from the albums view by tapping the + in the upper-left corner (refer to Figure 9-2), typing a name for the album, and tapping Save. To select pictures (or videos) to add to your newly minted album, tap their thumbnails.
Shortly, we show you how to add pictures to an existing album.
Albums you create on the iPad reside only on the iPad. They can’t be synced or copied to your PC or Mac, at least without work-arounds through a third-party app such as Dropbox.
Categorizing your pics
Placing pictures into photo albums seems to us like it’s been the way of the world forever. But albums per se are not the only organizing structure that makes sense. As part of iOS 7, Apple cooked up a simple but ingenious interface for presenting pictures that is essentially a timeline of pictures, grouped by years, collections, and moments. iOS 8 follows the same path.
Pictures categorized by years are indeed all the pictures taken in a given year. Can’t be more straightforward than that.
The collections category is a subset within a year, such as your holiday pictures in Las Vegas. Within that grouping is another subset called moments — the pictures, say, that you took by the dancing fountains at the Bellagio Hotel.
Figure 9-4 shows side-by-side-by-side views of these groupings, which appear as a grid of Lilliputian thumbnails in the case of years — you can barely make out any of the pictures.
Tap the years view (Figure 9-4, left), and slightly bigger thumbnails appear as part of the collections view (Figure 9-4, center). Tap again, and the thumbnails get just a little bit bigger in the moments view (Figure 9-4, right).
Figure 9-4: View your photos by years (left), collections (center), and moments (right).
Through all these views, you’ll see location information headings that get a tad more specific as you move from years to collections to moments, assuming your iPad knows where the pictures were taken. (Location Services must be turned on under Privacy Settings for your iPad to know where these images were captured.) If you tap a place location, Apple will fire up a map and show you how many pictures were taken in that location, as revealed in Figure 9-5.
Figure 9-5: Finding pictures on a map.
To quickly skim all the pictures in the years view, press and drag your finger across the grid — as you do so, the thumbnails swell in size, one by one. Lift your finger and that last thumbnail takes over a chunk of the screen, ready for you to admire it, edit it, or share it.
You can also tap a thumbnail in moments view to see controls for editing the picture (upper right), sharing it (bottom left), or discarding it (bottom right), as shown in Figure 9-6. Tap again and those picture controls disappear and the picture is bordered on the top and bottom by black bars.
Figure 9-6: You can edit, share, or discard a photo.
Apple summarizes photos in the collections and years views by showing you only a representative sample for those collections and years. To see every photo in your library that fits those views, go to Settings⇒Photos & Camera and turn off Summarize Photos by tapping the switch to make it gray.
Organizing your places, faces, and events
You’ve seen how pictures on the iPad mini can be organized into albums, years, collections, and moments. The iPad also supports the nifty faces and events features, which are familiar to Mac owners who use iPhoto software. Faces and events that show up in your list of albums are accompanied by the words From My Mac.
Consult Chapter 3 on syncing for a refresher on getting data to and from a computer to your iPad and back, a process that is even simpler through iCloud. When the iPad is connected to a Mac, you can sync photo events (pictures taken around birthdays, anniversaries, and so on) or faces (all the shots taken with a particular person in them). In Figure 9-7, all the pictures have Ed’s mug in them.
Figure 9-7: Facing Ed in Faces.
The faces feature requires that you sync to the iPhone with iPhoto or Aperture on a Mac.
Searching for pictures
iOS 8 has one more feature to help you find a given photo among the thousands if not tens of thousands you’ve shot. You can search your entire photo library in the cloud. From the Photos app, tap the search icon, the one that resembles a magnifying glass.
Apple has kindly grouped some of your pictures into potentially helpful search categories: Nearby, Home, those taken from a specific time period or location, and Favorites, which are so designated each time you tap the heart icon above a chosen image. You can also consult a Recent Searches grouping. Or just type a search term with the on-screen keyboard, perhaps the date or the time a photo was taken or the location where it was shot.
Sharing your photos
Apple in its infinite wisdom recognizes that you might want to share your best images with friends and family and have those pictures automatically appear on those people’s devices.
An impressive and aptly named solution called shared photo streams arrived on the iPad, iPod touch, and iPhone with iOS 6 (and a bit earlier on Macs running OS X Mountain Lion). It was modified in iOS 7 and is now referred to as iCloud photo sharing. The feature enables you to share pictures and videos with other folks and lets you in kind receive photo streams that other people make available to you. Here’s how:
1. On the Home screen, tap Settings.
2. Tap Photos & Camera.
3. If the iCloud Photo Sharing option isn’t on (green), tap it to turn it on.
4. Open the Photos app, and then tap the Shared tab.
5. Tap the + at the upper-left corner of the screen, and then type a name for your stream in the iCloud dialog that appears.
The name is your call, but we recommend something descriptive, along the lines of My Trip to Paris (and you should be so lucky).
6. Tap Next and choose who will receive your stream, as shown in Figure 9-8.
Figure 9-8: Inviting people to share your iCloud photos.
You can type a phone number, a text address, or an email address, or choose one of your contacts by tapping the + in a circle in the To field of the iCloud pop-up window.
7. Above the To field, tap Create.
8. Add photos as follows:
1. Make sure the Shared icon is selected, and then tap the selected stream.
2. Now make sure the Photos tab at the bottom of the display is selected, and then tap each photo you want to include. You can choose from years, collections, or moments.
3. Tap Done.
9. (Optional) Enter a comment.
10. Tap Post.
The recipient will receive an email similar to the one in Figure 9-9 and can choose to subscribe to your shared album by tapping the button shown.
Figure 9-9: Inviting a friend to share pictures.
We recommend checking out the activity view at the top of the Shared tab. It provides a nice summary of photos you and your pals posted.
You can share photos and videos with pretty much anyone who has online access — people don’t need to join iCloud. If you want to share your pictures with everyone, you can do so through a public gallery on iCloud.com. To do that, tap the Shared icon at the bottom of the Photos app and then tap the iCloud pictures in question. This time, tap People near the upper-right corner of the screen, and then flip the Public Website switch to on (green).
If the people with whom you’re sharing have their own iCloud accounts and have iOS 6 or later on a device or are using a Macintosh computer running OS X Mountain Lion, Mavericks, or Yosemite, they can not only glom onto your stream to view your photos but also leave comments about them. Don’t worry — you have the power to remove snarky remarks.
If the people you’re sharing with have iOS 7 or iOS 8, they can add their own photos and videos to the stream, provided doing so is okay with you. If it is, turn on the Subscribers Can Post switch. At your discretion, you can also receive notifications when your subscribers weigh in with a comment or add their own pictures or videos to the shared stream. After tapping the People tab, you can invite more people to view your stream.
If you’re ultimately unhappy with the shared stream itself or the people with whom you’re sharing it, you can kill the shared stream or kick those people off the list. To kill the stream, select it, tap the Edit button, and tap the circled X that appears on the thumbnail image that represents the given stream. To remove a subscriber, tap the stream, tap People, and then tap the name of the person with whom you’re sharing the stream. Scroll down to the bottom and tap Remove Subscriber. You’ll be asked to tap a Remove button just to make sure or tap Cancel if you have second thoughts. If you do remove a subscriber, you can always re-invite the person later.
Admiring Your Pictures
Photographs are meant to be seen, of course, not buried in the digital equivalent of a shoebox. The iPad mini affords you some neat ways to manipulate, view, and share your best photos.
Maneuvering and manipulating photos
You’ve already found out how to find individual pictures in albums, via iCloud, and in years, collections, and moments groupings. You may already know (from previous sections in this chapter) how to display picture controls. But you can do a lot of maneuvering of your pictures without summoning those controls. Here are some options:
· Skip ahead or view the preceding picture: From a moments or album view, flick your finger left or right.
· Switch from landscape or portrait mode: The iPad mini’s cool sensors are at work. When you turn the iPad sideways, the picture automatically reorients itself from portrait to landscape mode, as the images in Figure 9-10 show. Rotate the device back to portrait mode and the picture readjusts accordingly.
· Zoom: Double-tap to zoom in on an image and make it larger. Do so again to zoom out and make it smaller. Alternatively, on the photo, pinch your thumb and index finger together to zoom out and unpinch them to zoom in.
Figure 9-10: The same picture in portrait (left) and landscape (right) modes.
· Pan and scroll: This cool little feature was once practically guaranteed to make you the life of the party. Now it’s commonplace if no less cool. After you zoom in on a picture, drag it around the screen with your finger, bringing front and center the part of the image you most care about. In this way, you can zoom in on Fido’s adorable face as opposed to, say, the unflattering picture of the person holding the dog in his lap.
Those of us who store a lot of photographs on computers are familiar with running slideshows of those images. It’s a breeze to replicate the experience on the iPad:
1. Choose an album in the albums list.
To do so, tap the Photos icon from the Home screen or tap the Recently Added button in the Camera app.
2. Do one of the following:
· In the Photos app: Select an album and tap Slideshow in the upper-right corner. You’ve designated every photo (and for that matter, video) in that album to be part of the slideshow.
To cherry-pick the pictures you want to include in the slideshow, tap Select and then tap each image you want to include so that a check mark appears. Under this scenario, tap Add To and then add the chosen images to a new or an existing album. When that album is readily loaded, skip to the next step.
· In the Camera app: Tap the image in the lower-right corner of the screen to display the most recent image you’ve shot, and find a picture to include in your slideshow. From there, follow the instructions for the Photos app to tap and choose other images for the slideshow or to choose an entire album.
3. Tap Slideshow.
You’re taken to the Slideshow Options screen.
4. Choose transition effects and the music (if any) that you’d like to accompany the slideshow.
You have six transitions choices (cube, dissolve, origami, ripple, wipe across, wipe down). Why not try them all, to see what you like? You can choose the music from your iTunes stash.
5. Choose where you get to see the slideshow.
You can view the slideshow on the iPad mini itself or have it beamed wirelessly to an Apple TV, should you own Apple’s $99 set-top box.
6. Tap Start Slideshow.
The slideshow ends automatically, unless you’ve set it to repeat, as explained in the next section. Tap the screen to end it prematurely.
That’s it! Enjoy the show.
You can alter the length of time each slide is shown, change the transition effects between pictures, and display images in random order.
From the Home screen, tap Settings and then scroll down and tap Photos & Camera. Then tap any of the following to make changes:
· Play Each Slide For: You have five choices (2 seconds, 3 seconds, 5 seconds, 10 seconds, 20 seconds). When you’re finished, tap Photos & Camera to return to the main Settings screen for Photos.
· Repeat: If this option is turned on, the slideshow continues to loop until you stop it. If it’s turned off, the slideshow for your album plays just once.
· Shuffle: Turning on this switch plays slides in random order.
Press the Home button to leave the settings and return to the Home screen.
Storing pictures in the (i)Cloud
As mentioned, through the iCloud service, any photo you take with the iPad or with another iOS 8 device can be automatically stored in the cloud and pushed to another iPad, or your PC, Mac, iPhone, iPod touch, or Apple TV (third generation or later). The transfer is the antidote to the endless problem, “I’ve snapped a picture, now what?” Pictures are uploaded when your iCloud devices are connected to Wi-Fi.
What’s more, you need no longer fret about storage space when using iCloud photo library, which was still in beta, or test mode, as this book was being published. Apple used to store the last 1,000 pictures you took over a 30-day period in a special album — enough time, Apple figured, for all your devices to connect and grab those images, because a Wi-Fi connection was your only requirement. All the pictures you took remained on your PC or Mac, because those machines had more capacious storage. Thanks to iCloud photo library, the 1,000-picture limit on iOS devices no longer applies. Again, you can always manually move images from the shared album into other albums on your iPad or other iOS devices and computers, should you want to view those pictures when you don’t have an Internet connection.
There’s a catch to using the iCloud photo library: You have to pay for storage. You get 5GB of iCloud storage gratis, but shutterbugs will use that amount in a flash. You can get 25GB of storage (which includes the 5GB free) for 99¢ a month, 200GB for $3.99 a month, 500GB for $9.99 a month, and 1 terabyte for $19.99 a month.
Photos taken on the iPad aren’t whisked to iCloud until you leave the Camera app. In that way, you get a chance to delete pictures that you’d rather not have turn up everywhere. But after you leave the Camera app, all the photos there are saved in the Camera Roll album (in the list of Albums in the Photos app), including pictures that arrived as email attachments that you saved as well as screen captures taken on the iPad. We found this last feature handy when writing this book.
You can save pictures in the Camera Roll album to any other album on the tablet. Start by tapping the Select button at the upper-right corner of the screen. Next, tap each photo you want to move. Tap the Add To button that shows up at the top of the screen and choose the new album destination for your chosen images.
If for some reason the pictures you snap on the iPad mini are not uploaded, go to Settings, scroll down and tap Photos & Camera, and make sure My Photo Stream is turned on.
Editing and Deleting Photos
The iPad is never going to serve as a substitute for a high-end photo-editing program such as Adobe Photoshop. But you can dramatically (and simply) apply touch-ups and alter the composition of your pictures right from the Photos app. And Apple refined the editing process in iOS 8.
To start, choose an image and tap Edit. You’ll see the Edit Photo screen, as Figure 9-11, left, reveals.
Figure 9-11: Who says you can’t improve the quality of the picture?
The screen sports the following icons, from left to right:
· Auto-enhance: Tapping the icon to the right of Cancel lets the iPad take a stab at making your image look better. Apple lightens or darkens the picture, tweaks color saturation, and more. Repeatedly tap the icon to turn this tool on or off. Tap Done if you like the result.
· Rotate, straighten and crop: Tapping this icon summons a number of additional icons and controls, as shown in Figure 9-11, center. You can
· Straighten a crooked image or vice versa. Rotate the numbered dial and watch the effect on the photo. Click Done when you’re satisfied with how the image looks.
· Rotate the entire image counterclockwise.
· Crop the image. Tap the crop icon, and choose among the various aspect ratio options. Press your finger against the image to drag the photo around a crop grid to get it just as you would like, pinching and unpinching as you see fit to get closer up or farther away. When you’re satisfied with the result, tap Crop and then tap Save. Or tap Cancel to revert to the original.
· Add a filter: You can choose a filter — Mono, Tonal, Noir, Fade, Chrome, Process, Transfer, and Instant — after the fact. If you’re not satisfied after applying a filter, tap None to go back to the original photo.
· Adjust light, color, B&W: Apple provides numerous editing controls to adjust exposure, highlights, shadows, brightness, contrast, and black point (light); saturation, contrast, and cast (color); and intensity, neutrals, tone, and grain (B&W). For example, Figure 9-11, right, shows how you might change the look of a picture through the use of shadows.
If you aren’t satisfied with any of the edits that you’ve applied to your pictures, you can always tap Revert to restore the original.
Apple now allows third-party app makers to make their own filters and editing tools readily accessible from the Photos app.
Okay, so we told a tiny fib by intimating that photographs are meant to be seen. We should have amended that statement by saying that some pictures are meant to be seen. Others, you can’t get rid of fast enough. Fortunately, the iPad makes it a cinch to bury the evidence:
1. Tap the objectionable photograph.
2. Tap to display the picture controls, if they’re not already displayed.
3. Tap the trash can icon.
4. Tap Delete Photo (or tap anywhere else to cancel, if you change your mind).
In an instant, the photo is mercifully disposed of. It’s also deleted from Photo Stream across all your devices.
More (Not So) Stupid Picture Tricks
You can take advantage of the photos on the iPad in a few more ways. In each case, you tap the picture and make sure the picture controls are displayed. Then tap the share icon, at the bottom left (and shown in the margin) to display the choices shown in Figure 9-12.
Figure 9-12: Look at what else I can do!
Here’s a rundown of each choice:
· AirDrop: AirDrop is a neat wireless method for sharing photos, videos, or other files with folks who happen to be nearby and also have an iOS 7- or iOS 8-capable device or a Mac running Yosemite. You turn on the feature in Control Center (see Chapter 2) and choose whether to make your iPad discoverable to everyone or just contacts who are in the vicinity. Tap a photo to select it and then tap the icon representing the device owned by the person with whom you are trying to share the image (refer to Figure 9-12). That person will receive an invitation to accept the photograph or reject it on his or her device, an iPhone in the example shown in Figure 9-13. If the photo is accepted, the picture lands on the person’s phone almost immediately.
Figure 9-13: AirDrop lets you share a picture wirelessly with a friend who is nearby.
· Message: Apple and your provider support picture messaging through MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service). Tap the Message option, and the picture is embedded in your outgoing message; you merely need to enter the phone number, email address, or name of the person to whom you’re sending the picture. If that person is also using an iOS 5 or later device, the photo will be sent as an iMessage, which doesn’t count against your texting allotment.
· Mail: Some photos are so precious that you just have to share them with family members and friends. When you tap Mail, the picture is embedded in the body of an outgoing email message. Use the virtual keyboard to enter the email addresses, subject line, and any comments you want to add — you know, something profound, such as “Isn’t this a great-looking photo?” After tapping Send to whisk picture and accompanying message on their way, you have the option to change the image size (small, medium, or large) or keep the actual size. Consider the trade-offs: A smaller-sized image may get through any limits imposed by your or the recipient’s Internet service provider or company. But if you can get the largest image through, you’ll give the recipient the full picture (forgive the pun) in all its glory. (Check out Chapter 5 for more info on using email.)
· iCloud Photo Sharing: You can post pics to a shared album.
· Twitter: Lots of people send pictures with their tweets these days. The iPad makes it a breeze. Tap Twitter and your picture is embedded in an outgoing tweet. Just add your words, sticking to Twitter’s character limit of 140, and tap Post.
· Facebook: Lots (and we mean lots) of people also share photos on the world’s largest social network. After your Facebook account is configured, you too can post there from your iPad.
· Sina Weibo and Tencent Weibo: If you’ve enabled a Chinese keyboard, you’ll see options for China’s own social networks.
· Flickr: The Yahoo!-owned service is another popular photo-sharing destination.
· Copy: Tap to copy the image and then paste it into an email or elsewhere.
· Slideshow: We discuss slideshows earlier in this chapter. Here is another starting point for a slideshow, which as you know, can be accompanied by an optional musical soundtrack.
· AirPlay: Own an Apple TV set-top box? You can use AirPlay to stream photos from the tablet to the TV.
· Save Image: If you didn’t shoot the image in question on your iPad mini but want to add it to the device, tap the Save Image option.
· Assign to Contact: If you assign a picture to someone in your contacts list, the picture you assign pops up whenever you receive a FaceTime call or Message from that person. Tap Assign to Contact. Your list of contacts appears on the screen. Scroll through the list to find the person who matches the picture of the moment. As with the Use as Wallpaper option (described next), you can drag and resize the picture to get it just right. Then tap Set Photo.
You can also assign a photo to a contact by starting out in Contacts. To change the picture you assigned to a person, tap his or her name in the contacts list, tap Edit, and then tap the person’s thumbnail picture, which also carries the label Edit. From there, you can take another photo with the iPad’s digital camera, select another photo from one of your albums, edit the photo you’re already using (by resizing and dragging it to a new position), or delete the photo you no longer want.
· Use as Wallpaper: The Apple-supplied background images on the iPad mini can’t measure up to pictures of your spouse, your kids, or your pet. When you tap Use as Wallpaper, you see what the present image looks like as the mini’s background picture. You’re given the opportunity to move the picture around and resize it, through the now-familiar action of dragging or pinching against the screen with your fingers. You can even see how the picture looks against the time and date that appear on the lock screen. Another option is to take advantage of the Perspective Zoom setting, which lets you exploit a parallax animation effect in which the picture moves as you move the iPad. Tap the screen to toggle the setting on or off. When you’re satisfied with what the wallpaper looks like, tap the Set button. Options appear that let you use the photo as wallpaper for the lock screen, the Home screen, or both, as shown in Figure 9-14. Per usual, you can also tap Cancel. (You find out more about wallpaper in Chapter 15.)
Figure 9-14: Beautifying the iPad with wallpaper.
· Print: If you have an AirPrint-capable printer, tap Print to print the photo. You can choose how many copies of the print you want to duplicate.
Sometimes you want to make decisions about multiple pictures at the same time, whether you’re sharing them online, copying or printing them, adding them to a new album, or deleting them in bulk. Here’s a convenient way to do so. Launch the Photos app and either tap a specific album in the app or open up to a moments view so that you see thumbnails of your pictures. Next, tap Select at the upper right, and then tap each thumbnail on which you’re planning to take action, so that a check mark appears. As you do, the count for each picture you select increases. From here, you can tap the share icon (shown in the margin) to share pictures on a social network in bulk, email them, send them via a message, or copy or print them, as discussed previously. The options that appear may vary depending on how many pictures you’ve selected — for example, the number of photos you can email is limited.
You won’t have to tap the share icon in every case to add pictures to a designated album or to delete them. After making your picture selections, look for Add To and the trash can icon at the bottom of the screen. Tap Add To and then, from the list that appears, tap the album where you want the pictures you’ve chosen to land. If you tap the trash can icon instead, you can dispose of the selected photos.
Entering the Photo Booth
Remember the old-fashioned photo booths at the local Five and Dime? Remember the Five and Dime? Okay, if you don’t remember such variety stores, your parents probably do, and if they don’t, their parents no doubt do. The point is that photo booths (which do still exist) are fun places to ham it up solo or with a friend as the machine captures and spits out wallet-size pictures.
With the Photo Booth app, Apple has cooked up a modern alternative to a real photo booth. The app is a close cousin to a similar application on the Mac. Here’s how Photo Booth works:
1. Tap the Photo Booth icon.
Figure 9-15: Photo booths of yesteryear weren’t like this.
You get the tic-tac-toe-style grid shown in Figure 9-15.
2. Point the front-facing camera at your face.
You see your mug through a prism of eight rather wacky special effects: Thermal Camera, Mirror, X-Ray, Kaleidoscope, Light Tunnel, Squeeze, Twirl, and Stretch. The center square (what is this, Hollywood Squares?) is the only one in which you come off looking normal — or, as we like to kid, like you’re supposed to look. Some of the effects make you look scary; some, merely goofy.
You can also use the rear camera in Photo Booth to subject your friends to this form of, um, visual abuse.
3. Choose one of the special effects (or stick with Normal) by tapping one of the thumbnails.
Ed chose Mirror for the example shown in Figure 9-16 because, after all, two Eds are better than one. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) You can pinch or unpinch the image to further doctor the effect.
Figure 9-16: When one coauthor just isn’t enough.
If you’re not satisfied with the effect you’ve chosen, tap the icon at the lower-left corner of the app to return to the Photo Booth grid and select another.
4. When you have your bizarre look just right, tap the camera button on the screen to snap the picture.
Your pic lands (as do other pictures taken with the iPad cameras) in the Camera Roll album.
From the Camera Roll album or from right here in Photo Booth, pictures can be shared in all the usual places or deleted, which you might want to seriously consider, given the distortions you’ve just applied to your face.
Nah, we’re only kidding. Keep the image and take a lot more. Photo Booth may be a blast from the past, but we think it’s just a blast.
Before leaving this photography section, we want to steer you to the App Store, which we explore in greater depth in Chapter 11. Hundreds, probably thousands, of photography-related apps are available there, a whole host of them free. That’s too many to mention here, but we know you’ll find terrific photo apps just by wandering around the place. Head to the Photo & Video category to get started.
And there you have it. You have just passed Photography 101 on the iPad mini. We trust that the coursework was, forgive another pun, a snap.