Looking at applications to shoot video on the iPhone
The standard camera app that comes with the iPhone 6 is pretty good for shooting video as you have options to do straightforward video either at 30 frames per second or at 60 frames a second. You have to go into the system settings for the camera to set up the frames per second if you want to change from one to the other. The 60 frames per second will give you incredibly smooth video, but you do have to be aware that it does use up a lot of disk space on your device.
iPhone camera app for shooting slow motion
You also are able to use slow motion and you can choose between 240 frames per second or 120 frames per second. When the video has been shot you can set where the endpoints and out points are for the slow motion. So you can have normal speed video at the beginning of your clip followed by a period of slow motion and ending with normal speed again. It is easy to use and not difficult at all to get the slow motion video clips out of your device.
iPhone camera app for shooting timelapse
Very simple controls for shooting timelapse as the application works out everything for you. It is just a case of pressing one button and the timer starts running shooting off an image every now and then. I have used this while I was cycling on my bicycle and I even had the camera handheld. It worked out pretty good, but timelapse photography does work out better when you can have the camera held steady on a tripod. The application compared well to the HyperLapse application and I don’t really have a preference, one over the other.
Lots of other applications you can use for shooting video with your iPhone
Vine for the six second video
I haven’t really been able to get my head around this ridiculous six second video shooting application, service called Vine. You even have to use the phone in portrait mode while shooting your video. You hold down your finger onto the screen when you want to capture something. The idea would be to put together three or four very short clips. I have seen one or two innovative and interesting uses of this application. I kind of wonder how some of the people have managed to organise the sound for the video. You don’t get any editing features so if what you shot didn’t work out then you just have to shoot it again. In terms of video it is a little bit useless, but a little bit of fun. It is more suitable for a quick and silly social media type of video post. That is why the company was bought by Facebook. It says it all doesn’t it!
Capture – An application for YouTube
The first thing that I like about this application is that it gives you instructions to turn the camera into landscape mode. If you haven’t done that then you don’t get the red button to start a video recording. It is very simple in the extreme with one button at the top for switching from the three rear facing camera to the front facing camera. Then there is another button for turning on the light in this video recording application from YouTube. When you have recorded a couple of clips you will see a button in the top right-hand corner that will take you to where you can do some basic editing. You get your timeline at the bottom of the screen and you can press play to watch through your video. If you tap on one of the video clips in your timeline you can do some editing. The only editing that you can do is to trim the start and end of your clip. Topping and tailing is the professional term. It is possible though to add some music do it and you’ll see a button at the top right which gives you access to the music you have on the device. Also you can choose from a small number of YouTube soundtracks. If you want to make a quick video of a longer length than you can get from Vine and have a little bit more control then this application isn’t bad. You can also add other clips to your timeline. You tap on the plus sign at the right-hand bottom corner and you get the choice of recording a new clip or adding an existing clip. The existing clips are from all of the videos you have on your device shot by whichever application and not just those you’ve shot with this Capture YouTube application.
The first time that I used this for recording video everything went well with regards the shooting of the video. Where I ran into one or two problems was when I wanted to upload to my YouTube account. It tried to do it three times, but it failed miserably. I was using the Wi-Fi at my home and I wasn’t trying to do is over mobile data. So I have no idea why it didn’t work, it certainly should have been okay. If you are uploading to YouTube you also get the option of sending to Google plus, Facebook or Twitter. You can add a description for the video. It is possible to add a contact, I haven’t tried that yet but I suppose it is possible then to send a message directly to one of your friends. I expect that it will link back to the video on the YouTube site. If the upload actually completed. You can also export to the camera roll.
In enhancements you have just two choices and that is one for colour correction and the other is stabilisation. The default settings for those were set at on and I have yet to determine if it makes any difference for example you might turn stabilisation off if you have the camera set onto a tripod. I plan to do some more experimenting with this application and decide whether it is worth spending more time using.
Creating video with Spark
Spark Camera for iOS is another minimal video shooting tool and when you open it up what you get is a big red button in the middle of the screen. On my screen at the moment I can see other circles to the right of this big red button and these are videos that I have already shot using this application. The video clips within that movie that you are working on and editing are colour-coded. So on this screen here I can see that the video clip on the left has three clips in it. One of the clips is colour-coded red, the other one is purple and then there is a shorter video clip that is in blue.
Going from Manhattan to Mars and back to Area 51 with your filters
To do some editing you tap on the large circle and you get into a screen where your video starts playing. The first choice you can make is if you want to add some sort of filter to the video. At the bottom of the screen you see a row of little dots and each of these represent different filters that you can put onto your video. The filters are named after a large cities such as Barcelona, Cairo, Paris which are different types of colour filter. If you choose the Manhattan filter, that gives you a black-and-white movie. You can go for a monochrome green effect called Area 51 or you can go really weird with the Polaris effects which inverts all of the colours. The Tokyo effect gives you the rotoscoping defect that I saw in that movie featuring Keanu Reeves. Then there is the other outer space filter which is a monochrome red and it is called Mars.
Tap the scissors icon to edit your video in Spark
To further edit the video you can tap on the button in the bottom right-hand corner which is a pair of scissors. The timeline consists of each clip being a circle and you can trim each of these clips by tapping on that circle. It comes up full-screen and you have another larger circle to work with. You get dots on the circle for the starting point and endpoint of your video clip. If you are working with short clips, as you should be, it works fairly well for you to chop off the bits of the start and the end of the video clip that you don’t want to use. Tap on the button with the checkmark and you go back to the screen with your timeline.
Spark and Instagram tightly integrated for sharing video.
Once you have done all of your editing which might include adding some music you can then hit the green button with a downward pointing arrow. This is to the right side of your screen and it will save your movie. After the movie has been saved you get a choice of sending it to Twitter, Facebook, as a message or an email. The red button in the centre saves the movie as an Instagram video and it gets saved to the camera roll inside Instagram. The application Instagram opens up and once again you get choices of adding filters, doing more editing and setting the cover frame for the video. The next option allows you to choose where you are sending it to. Well, it is going to Instagram already, but you can also send it to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and also Foursquare. It is also possible to add this to the photo map and to name the location. The integration between the Spark iOS video application and Instagram during the process is seamless to the point that I hadn’t realised that some of these settings I was working with, were actually in the Instagram application.
Has my imagination been sparked by Spark
The controls for this application were very simple, the interface was straightforward and easy-to-use. I liked that I have a number of options for sharing the video out and it seemed to work very well sending my video off to Instagram. I think I would rather use this Spark video recording and editing iOS application than the Vine application. It is great to able to choose how long I want to have my video and also having some editing possibilities.
Spoilt for choice on iOS when recording and editing video
In this article we have looked at just three of the applications that I have on my iPhone 6. I have a number of other applications for shooting video and editing of the video and I will be looking at these in a future article.