The iPad and the Photographer

Now that the iPad has a firm foothold in the market, many of you might be seriously interested in getting one. But like all fancy gadgets, it can take time to decide whether it is worth spending around $499. Of course, it all depends on what you will want it for. As an entertainment device, it packs quite a punch. And if you are a photographer, you might find the iPad useful in various ways.

One of its major uses would be as a portfolio. When you are looking to be hired for photo services, potential clients would want to look at samples of your work. It is quite common to show your sample images using a laptop, albums or prints. By using an iPad, you can display your photos in one gorgeous medium. After all, presentation really does count. It is more striking and sleeker than a regular photo album and more intimate than a netbook or a laptop. At 9.7 inches on its widest side and at 1024 x 768 pixel resolution, the screen is large enough for viewers to fully appreciate the images. Also, it utilizes in-plane switching (IPS) technology which allows people who are obliquely viewing the screen to still get a clear view. This is perfect for when a crowd of eager people want to see the picture you took of them all at the same time.

Another asset of the iPad is that you can upload images to it right after you take your pictures. With the use of the iPad Camera Connection Kit, you have the option to import image files using a USB cable or straight from an SD card. It supports both JPEG files and RAW formats. Right after uploading, you can even send the images by 3G (you have to sign up for this extra service) or Wi-Fi to a client who might be waiting for them. A drawback is that photo editing is limited with the iPad. It will not be the best tool to do heavy post processing since iPad photo apps do not have the extensive editing features of Photoshop and other similar software.

Although the iPad is a fantastic device, it does have its weaknesses. It does not support Flash so if your online portfolio is flash based, you will not be able to access it. It also has little storage space (64GB max) compared to netbooks or laptops, and it does not have the capacity to multi-task so you can’t receive instant messages while you are previewing your photos or fixing your slideshow. Keep in mind that this is version 1.0 and that over time there will surely be improved and more feature packed versions that might address these issues.

The iPad might not replace a netbook or a laptop in terms of productivity or functionality but if your purpose in having one is to pamper yourself with the latest gadget that will give you tons of fun, and at the same time allow you to have a stunning portable portfolio that can show off your pictures in vivid detail, then this might just be the ideal gift you can give yourself.




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