Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Instagram vs Streamzoo...Photo Apps

Photograph by Lisa Shambrook (Please do not use without permission)

I have a thing for beautiful images and I enjoy manipulating photographs, so when I got my smartphone one of the first apps I picked up was Instagram, a popular basic photo editing app, and I was keen to experiment! 

I like taking photos, from snapshots to more arty work, so when Bekah blogged about several editing apps here on bekahcat.blogspot.co.uk I thought I'd get in on the act...

After using Instagram for a while, she found a new app called Streamzoo and I quickly tried it out myself. My problems with Instagram are that it's very basic, and I found myself wanting a greater variety of effects as I used it. I didn't want all my photos necessarily square either! Now don't get me wrong, I love Instagram; particularly 'Amaro' and 'Earlybird' for washed out effects, 'X-Pro' and 'Lo-Fi' for vibrancy and colour, 'Brannon' for a darker look and 'Nashville' who wouldn't like the movie border effect?
But, sometimes I wish the borders could be interchangeable with the photo effects.
I've also had a problem with Instagram not fully uploading the edited picture at times. Resulting in only half a picture ready to be posted with the rest blacked out. I cannot find a resolution to this problem, and it appears to be associated with Samsung phones. Grrr. And you may quickly realise that Instagram is not a company easily contacted. Its online presence is extremely minimal, with only a homepage and basics, everything is done on your phone or tablet.

So, to Streamzoo, it's easy to find and download, via your application store, and sign up to. You choose a photo in the same way as Instagram and then you see the differences. Its first page allows you to choose the crop you desire: none, custom, square etc then you move to the next page and choose your filter, using the tab at the base of the screen, these are like the Instagram filters but with a more arty feel, I loved the 'Masterpiece' filter. There are several B/W, sepia options, including a favourite of mine 'Classical' an 'old' texture.
After that comes your choice of border, again by clicking the tab at the base of the screen. There are fifteen borders, again much more artistic and varied. Then there is a Tilt-Shift option, which was new to me, but can change the whole definition of your photograph, picking out areas to highlight. Lastly you get the option to play with the colours, hue, saturation etc of your image before naming and uploading your finished picture.
Streamzoo is a little harder to figure out on the social aspect, Instagram is easy, upload and it's published to your stream and all those following you can see it. From there you can share it online. Streamzoo is not set up well for social networking. You need followers, but it is less well-known and harder to find followers, though once you have five followers you can actually use the app at home on your computer/laptop as well on your phone or pad!

So here are my experiments:

Photograph taken by myself with a standard digital camera on macro setting and no photoshopping.

Instagram, cropped with 'Hudson' filter and border.

Streamzoo, no cropping, 'Masterpiece' filter and 'Fancy' border.

Three images with different looks. And just for good measure I thought I'd show you one of Streamzoo's B/W options:

Streamzoo 'Classical' with 'Curl' border.

I tried using this photo with Instagram too but it wouldn't fully upload, perhaps a problem that Instagram may fix in the future...

So...have a go, download, upload and have fun...and follow me on either app as: lastkrystallos 

Note: All photographs (except logos) by Lisa Shambrook 
(Please do not use any without permission)

7 comments:

  1. I love all of them, which isn't very helpful is it? I am in awe of you being able to take lovely photos and even more so of being able to "tweak" them - yet another "can't do" over here - well done you.

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    1. Aw, I love each of them...variety is the spice of life after all! Why choose one when you can have three! Thank you for the compliment too Cam, I learned everything from my daughter...

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