Now here is something you don’t see everyday, sure we love to boast about the cameras on our smartphones, but techhive took it to another level. They sent out three professional photographers into the world with a smartphone each as their took! An iPhone 5, Lumia 920 and EVO 4G TLE were the devices. The article could have easily been turned into a versus shootout, instead, it showcases the potential of camera phones in general, especially in the hands of a pro. Such a great piece! Make the jump for the entire article and a lot more images.

iOS: Anne Hamersky

Anne Hamersky

The artist: Anne Hamersky shoots stills and video of real people doing real things. Last year she shot the construction of a straw-bale house on Hopi lands, an urban farm build in the South Bronx, and a wetlands restoration project in Passe a l’Outre, Louisiana. Michael Pollan selected her latest book,Farm Together Now(Chronicle, 2010), as his favorite food book of 2011. Anne lives in San Francisco. Follow her on Instagram (@anneham).

The smartphone: iPhone 5, 8-megapixel iSight camera

Twin Peaks Hike


I ride my bike a lot up Twin Peaks, the big double hills in the center of my city. The spring flowers are running amok up there right now. So it was fun to try out Photo Grid, a collage-making app for iOS. I used the swap function, the flop function, and the rounded-corner selection.

After using the iPhone’s built-in camera app to take pictures for the collage, I opened the collage in Snapseed and followed this path: Tune image > Contrast +14 > Saturation +6.



Windows Phone 8: Carly Marin

Carly Marin

The artist: Carly Marin is a graduate of California College of the Arts, where she received her BFA in photography. She is also the owner and operator of Carly Jean Photography, specializing in wedding photography and portraits. Her interest in photography emerged at the age of 10, and she has since dedicated herself entirely to it. Her work combines different elements of journalistic, traditional, and fashion-based photography. When she’s not photographing, you can find her enjoying coffee shops, doing experimental baking, or relaxing at home obsessing over cats! Although Carly uses mainly a digital SLR for her business, she loves using traditional 35mm film cameras for more-personal work. Apart from building up her commercial photography business, she is also working on fine-art personal projects that she hopes to share with the art world.

The smartphone: Nokia Lumia 920, 8.7-megapixel camera with an f/2.0 autofocus Carl Zeiss lens

A Portrait of Kasi

CARLY MARINA Portrait of Kasi

I took this photo at a park in Pleasanton, California, on a styled shoot with one of my favorite models to work with. Kasi recently got her cosmetology license, so we wanted to highlight her amazing hair and makeup skills with this shoot, as well as her unique sense of style. I used the Lumia’s auto settings, with an ISO of 400, the default exposure value and auto white balance, and aspect ratio 16:9.



Android: Michelle Walker

Michelle Walker

The artist: Michelle Walker is a San Francisco-based wedding, travel, portrait, and dog photographer. A formally trained photographer, she prefers a photojournalistic approach to her work—honest, meaningful, and gorgeous. She runs her own photography business, Michelle Walker Photography.

The smartphone: HTC EVO 4G LTE, 8 megapixels


Ton Sai Bay, Thailand

MICHELLE WALKERUmbrellas: Ton Sai Bay, Thailand

I love the colors in this photograph—they make me remember exactly what it’s like to be on that beach! I took this using the depth-of-field setting in the native Android camera app.  This is a great setting for creating shallow bokeh (from the Japanese word boke, which means “blur” or “haze”) that draws the viewers’ attention to the area of the image in focus.


  1. I was about to say “yeah but they’ll never get good shallow depth of field out of a phone camera lens” but in the bottom picture I see someone’s making progress in somehow artificially creating it.

    She says it’s in the Android native camera’s settings. But I’m running Android 4.2.2 on a Galaxy Nexus and am not seeing any “depth of field setting” that this lady found. Hmm. Guess it’s an HTC thing.

    It didn’t do an extraordinary job guessing distance (look at the umbrellas), not sure how it guesses, but maybe one way to accomplish accurate distance guessing when applying various levels of blur to create this effect, if the phone had a second camera, that could be all the reference it needs, and to some people out there perhaps worth spending a good bit extra to have.

    • Could be with additional lenses that come as addons. I have seen few for iPhones dedicated with case and as an optional add-ons to phones. One of my friend uses for his iPhone 5, which he bought from Apple Store, and it gives some depth in the pictures. I never compared it with my DSLR pictures though, so the accuracy of depth in those pictures I am not sure.

      • I like my idea better, using dual cameras, the phone compares the two shots it takes simultaneously from slightly different perspectives, like your eyes do, to come up with an adequately precise map of the distance of everything in the picture from the camera and then apply varying degrees of blur accordingly, also based on the user’s defined f-stop level or whatever to indicate how much to exaggerate the effect, like terrain elevation on Google Earth.

        Unless I’m conceptualizing the doability of that wrong, it’s doable, and there are already phones out there with dual cameras (but for stereoscopic purposes, for which there’s probably a lot more interest than being able to manipulate the same sort of depth of field you’d get with a lens — actually, tighter if you wanted, I suppose, as long as the thing can figure out a map or whatever of fairly accurate distances.

        Alternatively, pay for, carry around and strap a lens on, or some sort of software where you tap certain spots of your picture to give your phone’s software clues regarding depth of various points, or some sort of software that does a good job with pattern recognition to map out depth for you.

        If that’s what’s happening in the last picture, that technology has a little ways to go before it’s acceptable for more than just your flickr photostream.

      • I also like your idea and HTC could have released a software switch to do that with their HTC EVO 3D. i still have that phone and probably wouldn’t trade it for something. I like the 3D Camera portion of that phone. :D

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