When Finn Beales, a professional photographer based in Wales, is not using his Canon EOS 5D Mark III for work, he enjoys shooting with his iPhone 4S. Keeping with his style of creating symmetrical, minimal and enticing compositions, Beales primarily uses VSCO Cam, Snapseed and Afterglow to edit his shots.
We recently spoke with him about one of his favorites: a photo of his son floating in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland that recently won the children's category in the Mobile Photography Awards.
What circumstances led to you taking that shot?
I was on a travel photography assignment in Iceland for a telecommunications company. I do a lot of photo work in the travel sector and often travel with my partner (and sometimes my kids) on assignments. Both model professionally, so my clients get a photographer as well as a model when they book me. In this case my son was floating in the blue lagoon in a pair of blue armbands watching the steam rising off a geothermal lake. I used a Lifeproof waterproof case to protect my iPhone whilst in the lake and positioned myself behind him so the viewer feels like they are experiencing the same moment he is.
What did you do with the image afterwards with editing?
I modified brightness, contrast, ambiance and sharpening and added a subtle vignette which helps draw the eye towards the center of the frame. All modifications were made using Snapseed. The water really is that color, so no filter required here.
What are your thoughts on mobile photography in general?
Apart from being a lot of fun, it's starting to be taken seriously by brands and companies as a means by which they can directly communicate with a user base using apps such as Instagram. This is opening up new revenue streams for photographers who can deliver live photo-led experiences to a global audience using nothing but their net-connected mobile phone. You can't do that with an SLR! It's exciting and good to see it being taken more seriously. [Recently] Alamy, an international stock agency, announced it will now accept photographs taken with mobile phones; a recognition of the quality news images that can now be taken with these devices.
If you know an interesting mobile photographer who should be featured in our Exposure series, let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org.