You might not have given it too much thought, but whenever someone talks about photographers and photography, our mind unwillingly wonders to this image of someone carrying heavy expensive gear and taking pictures of breathtaking scenes in exotic places. That’s just fine, except for the small detail that makes reality very different. The vast majority of photos that are being taken every day around the world are shot with phones. The funny thing is we know this somewhere in the back of our minds, yet we often fail to give it the proper importance.
Mobile photography is amazing in many ways. Besides the fact that no matter where you go, you always have a camera in your pocket, the cameras have actually gotten so good in terms of image quality, that many professionals use them exclusively for personal work. A few weeks ago I was going through some ancient personal work I did way back in the early 2000s with a 2mp compact camera. I always thought there is no way image quality could be worse than a phone pic. I didn’t take resolution into account because it wouldn’t be fair and image size is not exactly a good way to measure image quality. Much to my surprise, looking over those photos I quickly realized they looked absolutely horrible and I’m not even talking about a side by side comparison with today’s phones. The phone I used back in 2012 produced much more impressive results than that 2 MP Canon. It was a bittersweet realization.
Mobile cameras are getting better and better and so are their lenses, but there’s just that one thing you can’t dance around: the fixed focal length. You can only do so much with a 25mm or 28mm equivalent lens and by all means this is a frustrating limitation.
Luckily, there are solutions. Clip on lenses have become quite popular among Instagram fanatics and mobile photographers, but the sad truth is most of them seriously damage image quality instead of improving it. That’s unless you use something like Kenko’s clip lens lineup.
You can chose from a 0.65x wide/macro lens, a 0.4x super wide lens and a 180 degree fisheye. Kenko is an industry leader in optical accessories and it’s hard to find a better product on the market. The lenses are easy to use by anyone are made with fine processed glass which means they bring no damage to the image quality.
I highly recommend them as a way to boost creativity when shooting with your phone and given the fact that they’re so small, you can get creative virtually anywhere.