iPad for Photographers

A few days ago I was meeting with a client in a coffee shop. When she walked in, I was sitting at a table with my iPad, answering emails. As it turned out she was an amateur photographer and we spent the first 15-20 minutes of our meeting talking about something that all photographers love - equipment. After the obligatory conversation about camera bodies and lenses, she asked me why I owned an iPad - in her opinion a tablet was barely more than a toy, completely useless in photographic workflow. I am a pretty recent iPad owner - I bought it only a few months ago as a present for my 35th birthday. I originally planned on using it to develop iOS apps - I bought a bunch of books, learned ObjectiveC and even wrote a few simple games for my daughter. However, as time went by, I began using it more and more for productivity and photography. My most used app is Evernote - that’s where I keep notes about my projects, client meetings, books I read, location scouting and pretty much everything else. Evernote, Dropbox and Google Drive (formerly Google Docs) take care of all of my productivity needs. I travel a lot for both my job and my business and ever since I bought an iPad, I rarely bring a laptop on short trips. I recently bought a slim bluetooth keyboard which essentially turns my iPad into a small netbook and allows me to type emails, documents and even work with an occasional spreadsheet a lot faster than if I were using the built-in touch keyboard.

Another app that I love is called AirDisplay. Basically this app allows me to extend my laptop’s screen to the iPad. I am used to working with dual display setups - both my office and my home computers are outfitted with 24-inch + 19-inch dual displays. It is especially useful when working in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Premier because I keep toolbars on the smaller screen giving the actual media (images or video) more real estate. When I go on trips that are longer than 2 days, I usually bring both my 15-inch MacBook Pro and my iPad. When the two are connected using AirDisplay, I can edit photos and videos on the go using the same configuration I always use. You can find a nice AirDisplay tutorial at http://www.howtogeek.com/?post_type=post&p=100886. App #3 on my most used list is SplashTop - it allows me to remotely control my computers from anywhere with internet connection. It’s really useful when I forget a file on my office desktop or when I need to run a Windows-only application remotely. Next on my list is iPhoto. Yes, I did say iPhoto. While I use Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop on my laptop and desktops, I prefer iPhoto on my iPad. In conjunction with the camera connector kit iPhoto allows me to quickly preview photos from on-location photoshoots and to give quick demos of my work to potential clients. Finally, I use my iPad for remote shooting. I won’t go into too much detail on this subject - you can read about it in excruciating detail in this tutorial. If you have any other cool uses for your iPad, please let me know - I’d love to get more mileage out of my tablet.