They used to say that a camera was only as good as the photographer using it but with the latest imaging technology in your Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 practically anyone can take great photos all the time.
Furthermore, if you subscribe to the notion that taking pictures is all about capturing that great moment with your friends or family, then you’re going to love Nokia’s Smart Shoot app.
Smart Shoot is one of the of digital camera lens applications for your Nokia Lumia 920 or Lumia 820 smartphone; Cinemagraph and Panorama are a couple of the others.
Think of these camera applications as being similar to changing the lens on a digital SLR. They extend the functionality of your smartphone’s camera in much the same way but, of course, they are not heavy to carry around!
Picture the moment
How often in a group photo will one person have their eyes closed, or is looking the other way? And, isn’t it annoying when a total stranger walks into the edge of the frame just as you’re taking a shot?
Nokia’s imaging wizards have created Smart Shoot to help you in both of these common scenarios. By shooting a sequence of images, Smart Shoot can change faces and remove unwanted objects so that you’ll always have the perfect picture.
There’s no doubt that Smart Shoot is a fantastic technical achievement but it’s real genius lies in how simple it is to use.
Smart Shoot can be launched either through the dedicated app shortcut, or via the lens picker on your camera’s viewfinder – this is the icon with two horizontal arrows pointing in opposite directions.
When Smart Shoot is open the first thing you’ll see is a regular viewfinder and a message along the top reading ‘hold the phone steady’.
This is important because the camera will take a sequence of photos for you to then select the best faces or to remove unwanted objects. You’ll only need to hold the smartphone still for a few seconds – a dial on the screen tells you when it’s done.
When it’s ready, Smart Shoot will show you a very quick flick through each of the shots that it has captured – this is your cue to make the magic happen.
By flicking up and down the screen, you will scroll through each of the shots that have been taken. It might be that among these images is the perfect photo already, so you’ll just have to press save to make sure it is captured in your camera roll.
However, should you need to remove anything or use a combination of different faces from different shots then you’ll need to bring up the editing menu.
Tapping anywhere on the screen will bring up the menu. Tap on the ‘pencil’ edit icon to bring up the two options, erase objects or change faces.
By selecting ‘erase objects’ Smart Shoot will then automatically detect people or things that have strayed into the edges of your shot.
It will show you one or sometimes several things that can be removed and then it’s up to you if you want to keep them or not. Select the tick to confirm your choice and then remember to press save at the end.
This sequence of three images below shows how object removal can work to produce exactly the shot you were hoping for.
It is also just as easy to use the changing faces feature. When you select ‘change faces’ Smart Shoot will detect all the faces in the photo and circle them for you.
Selecting each circle/face will engage the slider tool that appears at the side of the screen – use this to scroll through specific shots and press the ‘tick’ icon to confirm your choice.
As you scroll through, you’ll magically see the face change with the range of options available – pick the one with the biggest smile and when they’re looking at the camera!
Do this for each face to create the perfect composite group photo. Again, remember to press save when you’ve finished.
What’s great about Smart Shoot is that it makes capturing that perfect split-second moment just that little bit easier and I love it because I am almost always the one who blinks!