What happens when you throw together a shoot with two fashion models, one photographer, and an iPhone? We went ahead and found out for ourselves. As a professional photographer, the most popular question I receive on a daily basis is, "What camera and lens do you shoot with?" I also hear "My camera isn't good. What camera and lens should I buy?" When asked that question, I always make sure to emphasize that great light trumps great gear every time. That inspired me to do put down the D810 and practice what I preach. And what better way than to break in my iPhone 7 Plus?
Sure, the new iPhone 7 Plus is great and geared with its new, revolutionary portrait mode. The main point I'd like to drive home with this shoot is this that the camera doesn't matter. Let me repeat: the camera doesn't matter as much as the quality of light presented on your subject.
Location and Light
For the natural light location, we found a vacant porch that had a wooden overhang that produced nice, soft light. With the overhang, the light would hit our subject's evenly without the need for any strobes, modifiers, or reflectors. We used 100-percent natural light.
Going into the shoot, I knew that we were going to come out with great photos. We had beautiful light as well as beautiful subjects. I could have used a disposable camera like Kenneth Bone and came out with great photos.
This was my first time trying out the new Portrait Mode offered in Apple's iOS 10.1 exclusively for the Apple iPhone 7 Plus, and boy, was I impressed with it. It created a very DSLR-like bokeh effect coupled with great quality photos in the shade. Let's take a look straight out of the camera:
As I mentioned earlier, I was quite impressed with the bokeh effect created, although it isn't perfect. Take a look again at the right side of Maria's hair, you can see that the effect gets a little soft and odd. But if you take it for what it is, a smartphone, it is quite an impressive feature Apple has put out for their new phone. Let's take another look:
As you can see, there are flaws with the bokeh mode if you take a look where Nhi's arm is in the photo above. It looks odd where there appear to be feathering issues with the pattern of the door.
I'm as guilty as most photographers are when is comes to G.A.S. (gear acquisition syndrome), but at the end of the day, the quality of the photographs we produce all come down to the photographer, the light, the subject, and then the gear. Let's stop putting the carriage in front of the horse when working on our craft.
With that said, what do you think of the new iPhone 7 Plus photos I've shared with you? Share your thoughts!