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How to create an artsy self-portrait on iPhone

The latest “weekly photo challenge” on wordpress inspired me to write a blog post about how to create artsy self-portrait. At this time I’m going to use only the applications my iPhone 4. Let me begin with the original photo I have taken while I was in Shanghai.

The first app I’m going to use is Snapseed. This is a photoshop-like application available on the appstore. Although there are plenty of options/filters on this app, I only used it to make some adjustments on brightness, contrast, white-balance and saturation. I also had to straighten the image only a little bit clockwise. Finally I ended up cropping my image to make my face appear approximately at the center. You may certainly choose to align your face to more left or right. That is totally upto you :)

Second app I used was FocusTouch. This application is used to make the image blurry except the areas you want to keep sharpened. What you have to do is actually quite simple. In my case, I painted my face but not the trees at the background to keep my face as it is but to make the background blurry. This effect gives your image a nice depth and a 3D feeling. By the way, you may click on these thumbnails to see them in full size. Just make sure you are not painting the background as well while you are painting the edges. To prevent this you may want to start painting on the original photo.

Next up comes one of my favorite application, Noir. Though you may find it a bit too much, I personally like the effect of light centering at a certain area leaving the rest darker. In my case, my face was the area receiving the brightest light. Oh, before I forget, this application desaturates your photo as well. You may later pick a black, green, blue or brown tint according to your taste. What you actually have to do with this app is to play with the lightened area, brightness, contrast etc.

Another favorite application, Color Effects was my next choice. What you do with this application is basicly paint any area of a black & white photo to any color you want. The app automatically turns your photo black & white. Then you can either paint the area you want to its original color or to another color of your choice. But since our original photo was already in black and white, I chose to paint my face to a color closest to skin color. Ok, I admit I look rather nausious with this yellowish look :) but we said “an artsy self-portrait”, right? :))

Well, my personal choice for a final touch to a photo is light effects most of the time. And for this purpose LensLight application comes in quite handy for me. I basicly picked yellow octagons to blend with my yellowish face :)… On left side you will also notice a bar where you can adjust how bright your light will blend over your photo. Never hesitate to play with other options. But once you find your perfect combination, go and save it to your photo library since you may forget the settings if you want to try other combinations as well. So here’s how I finalized my masterpiece :)…

There are plenty more photo applications for iPhones which I find way to easier compared to photoshopping. They are definitely not a substitute for photoshop but just for simple needs, such as a special photo for your blog, for example, I admit these apps are perfect to say the least.

So what photography applications do you use on your iphone? Please do not hesitate to share right below in the comments area.

About Hakki Fenerci

Digital Artist, NFT Artist, Illustrator, Graphic Designer based in Barcelona. Singer, Songwriter, Lyricist and (tadaaa) Former Dentist :).


How to create an artsy self-portrait on iPhone’ için 8 yanıt

  1. Thanks for the pingback! How I wish I had an iPhone so I could do this. I think this tutorial’s really cool :)

    Posted by Maita | 22/12/2011, 18:29
  2. That is so generous of you to share this cool and awesome features of your iPhone. I use Camera plus and it’s the best $1.99 item I bought that brought me amazing photos. The burst feature helps too on top of the effects.

    Posted by the island traveler | 22/12/2011, 10:08
  3. Artsy, indeed! Thanks for sharing it with me and for the pingback!

    Posted by Sony Fugaban | 22/12/2011, 06:20
  4. Great idea! I enjoyed seeing the process. This is the fun things about iphones. The process of photography can be very layered.

    Posted by Josette | 22/12/2011, 02:07
  5. Wow, fabulous information, thank you and am definitely going to investigate these apps! I don’t have photoshop which has always seemed a little complicated, and expensive, to me. Your finished shot is a world away from the original, love what you have done!

    Posted by Patti Kuche | 22/12/2011, 00:32


  1. Geri bildirim: Weekly Photo Challenge: Self Portrait | dtharm - 22/12/2011

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