UI/UX Design of Mobile app for Photographers — LightM
Idea of the App
Photography allows you to create images of events, times, and places. It makes you so much more observant and aware of the different things that surround you each day.
Photography has always been one of my favorite hobbies. With the time I’ve started noticing things like light, shadows, patterns, frames, and colors that I can use in my pictures.
I realized that you can express yourself better with photographs which you shoot using manual mode. When you use your camera’s manual mode, anything is possible. Your only limit is your imagination!
Though if you’re just getting into photography you might not even know what shutter speed, aperture, and ISO do, so taking control over them can be overwhelming. And many of the analog cameras don’t have built-in light meters, which makes it hard for beginners to figure out the correct exposure.
Hence that’s why I came up with idea of designing an elegant and easy-to-use app that would allow photographers to quickly figure out the correct exposure for the scene.
Initially I decided to do practical test by checking few competitors in order to determine the strengths and weaknesses of their apps or how useful and convenient they are. I came to know that some of them were not providing accurate parameters which were important, others had a lot of unnecessary features, which distract you at the moment of taking photo.
Three pillars of photography, also known as “exposure triangle” are aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. This is what you need to know and understand when shooting manually. Aperture is used to draw your attention to one part of your image and throw the rest out of focus, giving you that nice blurry background. Shutter speed is used to control the amount of motion in a photograph. If you want to freeze something in action you can select fast shutter speed, on the other hand, a nice motion blur can be achieved with a slower speed. ISO represent the sensitivity of the camera sensor and film emulsion to light.
Using this knowledge I’ve started with sketching the app and I wanted to make it simple yet stylish with all essential features. At first, I wanted to focus on the flow of application experience but not the appearance and I ended up with low fidelity wireframes.
Continuing to work on the project I evaluated and explored different layouts and arrangements for elements. Final theme and the functionality were defined as well.
Prototype. Test. UI Design
Adopting a hands-on approach in prototyping and using wireframes the first prototype was made. It was tested with photographers and real application users. Then based on feedbacks and suggestions adjustments were completed and final design created.
Since the main goal was to create a useful, intuitive and transparent interface. Eventually the main screen of the app has two Metering modes (matrix and spot metering) allow photographers to measure the light based on the entire scene or in a particular spot. And it has the option to lock one of the exposure triangle values which will make the app adjust remaining two for a correct exposure. The second screen has Personalized settings that let you easily adjust settings according to the camera and lens you use also switch between digital and analog cameras for more accurate light measurement.
In the interest of having better idea how the app looks and functions you may check the interactive prototype below.
The main purpose of this mobile application was to give photographers the opportunity to use a handy application when using manual controls in photography as there remains something brilliantly satisfying about it. Let me know what do think about this work and whether you have any feedback.
For me, each new project is an opportunity to challenge yourself, a process in which you must identify a problem and find its solution. It is a chance to create something worthwhile. Moreover, experience shows that ideas for creating great applications surround us.