The 10 best photography apps of 2013

By , Dec 3, 2013

iPhone Photography apps

The year is coming to a close. We’ve spent the past 52 weeks talking about jailbreaks, rumors, new products, gear, Apple news, and apps. Apps are my specialty around here. I find them, test them, and tell you all about them.

That’s why it is my job to tell you about apps and games that the writers of iDownloadBlog think are the cream of the crop for the entire year. For the rest of this year, and probably into 2014, we will have lists of our favorite apps in the most popular categories that released in 2013. This week, the category is photography…

Mextures

MexturesAs soon as I tested this filter effects app, I knew it was different than the rest. The premade filters offer a wide variety of textures, gradients, and effects. Add as many or as few effects as your picture needs to create stunning, professional looking iPhone images. This app is available for $0.99.

Flipagram

FlipagramVacation slideshows will never be boring again with this fantastic photo-editing app. Grab photos from your camera roll, or take pictures using the in-app camera feature, and then set them to music from your iPhone’s music library. Once combined, you can edit your slideshow to fit perfectly with Instagram’s time limitations, or post full-length programs to Facebook. This app is available for $1.99.

Facetune

FacetuneNobody is perfect. We all know that. However, we are always looking for ways to make people think we are. Facetune is a photo-editing app that lets you hide imperfections, whiten teeth, and make your subjects look like they just stepped out of a salon. You can widen a smile, smooth out wrinkles, improve skin tone, change eye and hair color, and even reshape facial structures. This app is available for $2.99.

PicPlayPost

PicPlayPostThis app makes it possible for you to add multiple photographs, GIFs, and even videos to a single collage. Then, you can add your own music to create a mosaic of memories for your friends and family to enjoy. With 36 adjustable frames, 72 different background textures, eight imaged filters, and seven video filters, you will make any grandparent happy to see a little tyke running, skipping, and falling down to the perfect soundtrack. This app is available for $1.99.

Over

OverA picture is worth a thousand words, but sometimes it takes a little more to get the thought across. Now that social media has popularized poster-like photographs, you need an app that lets you express your thoughts better. Over offers a classy way to add text to photographs so that your newborn’s picture doesn’t look like a Grumpy Cat meme. The overlays include unique banners created specifically for the app, specially designed logos, icons, and clipart for practically any occasion, and customizable fonts to make your pictures stand out. This app is available for $1.99.

ProCamera 7

Procamera 7The recent update to one of the most popular photography titles in the App Store brought with it so many new features that it is considered a whole new app. This new app has been completely redesigned to take advantage of features exclusively in iOS 7.  It features 76 filters and effects that are viewable by using touch-based gestures. You can see your images in full-resolution so you can see every pixel as it will look on a larger screen. Adjust the shutter speed to get sharper, cleaner pictures at night. Rapid Fire mode lets you take up to 10 pictures per second so you will never miss a great action shot. This app is available for $2.99.

LoryStripes

LoryStripesA few years ago, the popular trend was to “put a bird on it.” Today, things have gone a more geometric route making circles, rectangles, and stripes the new hotness. This app lets you put stripes just about anywhere you want on your photograph. You can hide them behind objects, wrap them around subject matter, and create an explosion of ribbon-like imagery anywhere you like. There are 40 different Stripes with 120 preset styles so you don’t have to spend too much time crafting the right one, and 62 different colors with nine shades and blends. This app is available for $0.99.

Spark Camera

Spark CameraCapturing memories doesn’t have to take up a lot of space on your iPhone and doesn’t necessarily require a lot of editing. With this app, you can grab a few seconds of a moment, come back to it later to add more moments, and add songs from your device’s music library to create seamless montage videos that you can share with others through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and more. You don’t have to stick to one montage either. You could be simultaneously making a golfing montage and a pie eating montage and each project will be saved in a separate folder. This app is available for $1.99.

Tangent

TangentIf you want to mix the gradients and textures of Mextures with the overlay concepts of Over, this app has the right mix. It uses scalable shapes, color fills, light blends, and more to give you unique and interesting customizable designs for every picture. Pick from 35 fully customizable styles to combine shapes, patterns, and blends into a unique look. Incorporate 70 shapes, 68 patterns, and 350 combinations of blends and colors. Drag, zoom, rotate, and resize your photos to get just the right look. This app is available for $0.99.

Tadaa SLR

Tadaa SLRSometimes, the simplest things can have the biggest impact on the outcome of something else. This app has one feature, but it is such a useful feature that you may never take another photo without it. First, take a picture or upload it from your camera roll. Then, mask out your subject. Finally, tap to focus. Tadaa. The subject that you’ve selected becomes sharply focused while the rest of the picture fades into the background, easily creating the impression of depth of field. This app is available for free.

We are also taking a poll from our readers on the top apps in each category. Out of the 10 apps we presented today, please cast your vote on which one is the very best. The winning app will be included on a list of the top 10 readers’ choice apps for 2013. Please take a moment to make your voice heard and tell us which photography app from the list above is your favorite.


Make sure to check out and vote for our other best apps of the year:

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  • eatroffles

    VSCO and Aviary.

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      Both were released in 2012, I believe

      • CPDigitalDarkroom

        VSCOcam was launched in June of 2013. They had an older version which did come out in 2012 which they discontinued when they released the revamped version.

  • chumawumba

    FaceTune is definitely worth the money. The patch and smooth tools are the best.

  • http://www.jaynomad.com/ syldd

    if you’re serious about iPhoneography/iPhone Photography or just want much better shots, check out Mattebox 2, 645 Pro, VSCO Cam, and Filterstorm Neue. using these apps listed above (minus Pro Camera 7 & Mextures) will make your photos look like the rest of the Instagram herd’s photos.

  • tomatic

    photo editing apps and photography apps that actually are used for taking pictures, are in my opinion 2 different things.
    and with editing I mean finishing a composition.

  • JustMeJip2

    TO ME the best photo apps are, Snapseed and biglens.

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      Yes, but again, these were not released in 2013.

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      This being said, I Snapseed and Big Lens are hands down my most used photo apps. You can actually see them in my photo folder, as pictured at the top of this post :)

  • n4nd4

    VSCO most definitely. Mextures and Big Lens too.

  • Said Frausto

    I need one app for change the ISO someone know any?

    • http://blog.procamera-app.com/ ProCamera

      Hi @saidfrausto:disqus, it’s not currently possible to change the ISO on an iPhone. The closest thing you can do is to expose and lock for highlights and drop the ISO that way. The iPhone will automatically start dropping ISO once the exposure is at the minimum 1/20 second.

  • leart

    Facetune and picsplay pro

  • sourav

    Instafusion – Best Image Blending APP – top paid app in US AppStore !!

  • simieski

    Tadaa SLR is $1.99

  • Carmela Jackson

    i like and use Tangent also pixies to add fun stickers

  • Nikhita Ravi

    Great! Except Tadaa SLR is currently over $3.00 for the iPhone.