Can smartphones replace DSLRs for print publications?

Chris Burns - Feb 16, 2016
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Can smartphones replace DSLRs for print publications?

The latest issue of the food magazine Bon Appetit has been released with inspiration from the most modern means of experiencing food: Instagram. Instagram being just one example of the many social networks and means of sharing the resulting photos taken by food-lovers - it's all about the culture. In addition to the impetus for the issue being social sharing, the full collection of photos inside was photographed by Apple's iPhone exclusively. What better way to drive home the point that we're obligated to photograph our meals than to show it with the tool millions use to do it?

This is the first time the magazine has done such a shoot, capturing every single photo in the issue using a smartphone. While each photographer generally uses a much larger camera - DSLR or otherwise - Bon Appetit suggests that, as many of their photographers are active Instagram users, they were fully prepared to use their iPhones to capture photos for the magazine.

For those of you reading the magazine right this minute, the following list shows which shots - of the lot - were photographed with an iPhone:
1. Chicken sandwich, photographer Alex Lau, pgs. 60-61
2. Nachos, photographers Peden + Munk, pgs. 76-77
3. Roasted carrots, Photographer, Alex Lau, pg 89
4. Booze pics, photographer Alex Lau, pg. 87
5. Candies, photographer Benjamin Rasmussen, pg. 63
6. Sweetgreen, photographer Alex Lau, pg 62

insides

One of the most interesting comments released by Bon Appetit itself on the issue was from photographer Michael Graydon, who said:

"I’ve been a photographer for about 20 years, and I’ve been through 8×10 cameras, film—you name it. In the past, the bigger and scarier-looking the camera you pulled out, the more intense and professional you looked. Now, you have to let go of the ego you attach to the tool, and the iPhone is the ultimate expression of that."

food

While this is a first for the magazine Bon Appetit, it's certainly not the first time an iPhone has been used in a big-name magazine.

• New York Magazine 12/15: Cover "Reasons to Love New York" shot on iPhone
• Interview Magazine 9/15: 8 celebrity-selfie inspired covers shot on iPhone
• Allure 8/15: Chris McMilan spread on 70's hairstyle trends shot on iPhone
• O Magazine 8/15: Cover by Oprah shot on iPhone

We wouldn't be surprised if this trend continued. Why shoot with far more expensive and bulky cameras when the results shot with a smartphone are just as acceptable?

This sort of photography has been in vogue for years on the web - some of the biggest publications in the world, including your friends here at SlashGear, have shot entire features with smartphones - iPhone included.

Has the eye of the reader become less adept at seeing the difference, or have smartphone cameras just gotten that good?


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