Windows Phone App Review: Tilt Shift
Tilt shift lenses have been around for some time and now the effect is available for your Windows Phone camera via the app Tilt Shift. The tilt shift effect can trick your eyes into viewing a photo as a miniature scene but for the most part it gives your images a narrower focal point.
So what is a tilt shift lens? In a nutshell it manipulates plane of focus to change the image's depth of field into a wedge or circular shape. The wedge shape does give landscapes and scenic shots a bit of a miniature look while the circular shape reminds me of looking through a Coke bottle bottom.
Tilt Shift, the app, is laid out nicely. When you first launch the application you'll see buttons to access the camera, your image folders and the help section. You can apply the tilt shift effect to existing photos or take a new picture and apply the tilt shift.
Once you capture or load an image into the app, blur controls are present to select between radial (or circular) and linear tilt and the size of the area. The radial/linear area can be moved around your image by touch. The linear option can be rotated vertically by touch as well.
You also have controls to make saturation, brightness and contrast adjustments; adjust the vignette (darkness around the corners of the image); and process all the adjustments you've applied (the arrow button). From the three-dot menu you can create a new project, reset all your adjustments and read the about screen.
Once you've processed the adjustments, you'll launch a preview of the changes and have the option to save the image to your Pictures Hub. Tilt Shift definitely gives you more creative control over your images. The only downside to Tilt Shift is that the processing can take a while. With the amount of adjustments being applied I don't know if this can be sped up but don't be surprised if it takes up to a minute to process the image. Another issue, and it's more along the lines of something to get used to than a downside, is vertically oriented images are turned horizontal for editing. It would have been nice to maintain the vertical orientation to make editing a little easier.
Also, be careful with the vignette settings. The Don Corleone sample photo had only about 30% vignette applied. The corners can get dark really quick.
All in all, Tilt Shift is a nifty little accessory app for your Windows Phone camera. You can create some unique looking images by shifting the depth of field around. Tilt Shift is a mango app and has a free trial version. The full version will run you $1.99 and you can find Tilt Shift here at the Windows Phone Marketplace.