Australian news site news.com.au has published an interview with National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez, in which he talks about the challenges of taking photos of some of the most spectacular sceneries on earth with a smartphone and give some tips to smartphone photographers. What interests us, however, is the smartphone in question, which turns out to be a Lumia 1020.
Known for a while as Microsoft’s chosen photography champion for its Lumia smartphone line, Lumia enthusiast Alvarez was recently tasked with photographic the Seven Natural Wonders of the world with only a smartphone. And so, he stood in front of the erupting Mexican Ring of Fire, 7600 meters above sea level, with his tool of choice, a Lumia 640 XL, in hand.
Alvarez recalled his first photography adventure with a Lumia, the 1020 in this case, as he travelled the west of America for 10 days looking for the perfect photo. His work using the phone, initially thought of as from a DSLR, was published on the inside cover of the NatGeo’s 125th photography special. He even recently took a Lumia underwater for a photoshoot of the Great Barrier Reef, using a self-made waterproof case.
“When we first started publishing the images people said I had used a DSLR because I couldn’t capture high-quality images on a smartphone,” “But in the two years since we started, that conversation has shifted entirely and now everyone accepts smartphones can capture amazing images.” – Stephen Alvarez, National Geographic Photographer.
Alvarez also shares some of his tips for using smartphones to shoot professional-looking photos, which include shooting continuously when the moment comes, using a tripod, tweaking the camera settings (most easily done on a Lumia,) staying with landscape orientation and more.
“The best camera in the world is the one that’s in your hand when the photo opportunity arises and for most photographers, amateur or professional, it’s going to be a telephone.” – Stephen Alvarez, National Geographic Photographer.
Overall, Alvarez makes a good case for professional photography with a smartphone, while using a Lumia phone for it. With the information we have had so far on the camera performance of Microsoft’s newest entries, the Lumia 950 and 950 XL, we can’t wait to hear Alvarez opinion after he’s taken one for a spin, hopefully soon.
Further reading: Lumia, Microsoft, National Geographic, Photography