National Geographic’s mobile phone adventure

pro photographer with 41 megapixel Nokia

Hungarion version
Stephen Alvarez mobile snaps for National Geographic

Stephen Alvarez mobile snaps for National Geographic

Yet another photographer has succumbed to the seductive charms of mobile photography. This time it is National Geographic‘s Stephen Alvarez who recently decided to go mobile for a magazine photography experiment. He uses the 41 megapixel Nokia (not yet available everywhere, and definitely not yet in Hungary), and into the bargain generated great marketing value for the manufacturer.

Totally different grip than a DSLR

Totally different grip than a DSLR

ISO 1200 wrote about the National Geographic photographer’s adventure: a ten day assignment with only a mobile phone in his pocket in the American Wild West. It turns out the 41 megapixel sensor of the Lumia 1020 he uses seems to have had enough quality for the magazine. In the video below the photographer himself tells what freedom it meant for him not to have to carry a full DSLR set, just a tiny phone that can be used in various situations where a larger camera would only hinder the photographer not help him.

Some times using a smaller camera is much easier

Some times using a smaller camera is much easier

Let’s not forget however that it was an advertisement piece. The manufacturer Nokia probably paid a large amount of money to National Geographic to let them show the world even NatGeo photographers would be happy with their product’s quality. Still, the results are impressive photos that can be seen on the project website.
I really hope though that the magazine publishes at least some of them in full spread prints as well to allow us see how much is this little thing able to deliver compared to photos taken with real cameras.

Of course I don’t now expect all NatGeo photographers to suddenly swap their highend cameras for mobile phones. What I do expect though is that the more advanced camera phones will be more used by serious photographers as well. Here’s hoping this  trend won’t prompt any more managements to fire all their photographers and replace them with journalists snapping with their phones.

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