Event Photos by Star Sabroso
Can a smartphone replace a professional DSLR camera?
This was the ultimate question that tech giant Samsung answered with a resounding “Yes!” When it mounted a one-night photo gallery dubbed “Dark Blue” at the Green Sun last May 13.
Samsung disproved the one-dimensional impression people have about smartphone cameras whose quality are usually judged according to high megapixel count, wherein the impression is that the higher the megapixel count, the better the quality. Such notions do not take into consideration other factors that make for a great camera, for instance, the aperture, shutter speed and fast auto-focus, just to name a few.
Unfortunately, almost all smartphone manufacturers think that seeing a real difference when comparing camera quality can be quite difficult. However, Samsung has raised the bar, coming out with a technological milestone as witnessed in the “Dark Blue” exhibit that showcased the Samsung Galaxy S7 edge and featured the work of two of the country’s top fashion photographers with “it” girls Gerogina Wilson-Burnand and Solenn Heussaff as muses, confidently taking photos with just a smartphone.
The gallery was divided into two exhibits placed on opposite sides of the room. The first, called Own The Night, was a low-light, neon-themed shoot by BJ Pascual with Georgina. Taking its cue from the low-light feature it showcased, the exhibit was barely lit, making the high-fashion and colorful shots of Georgina really stand out. The second exhibit, Into The Blue, featured an ethereal underwater shoot by Mark Nicdao with the beautiful Solenn. The area was beautifully accented with a soft, blue light, creating a somewhat underwater feel.
BJ Pascual and Mark Nicdao pushed the Samsung Galaxy S7 edge to its limits by mounting the said photoshoots, one in low-light and one underwater.
Despite their excitement at the concept of mounting full shoots with just a phone, the photogs and their muses were naturally skeptical. Mark, for instance, admitted feeling both thrilled and hesitant about the project, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t done any underwater shoot. “I’ve never done a fashion shoot with just a smartphone. Combining the both was a real challenge,” he revealed.
Even Solenn, who is no stranger to underwater shoots and has been a long-time Samsung loyalist, expressed doubts. “I’m a water baby and so I was super excited upon hearing the concept. I’ve done an underwater shoot before but with just a smartphone? I honestly thought people would just take behind the scenes (photos) with it. I did not expect the Samsung Galaxy S7 edge to be used as the main camera for campaign materials because you’d always need the specs to be really high for these things,” says Solenn.
While most professionals would balk at the idea of a mobile phone replacing DSLRs, BJ Pascual and Mark Nicdao dared to go beyond all the conventional notions prevailing in their field, breaking barriers in the process.
“There’s a lot you can do with a camera phone, given the right conditions, combined with a great eye, an understanding of the basics, and knowing how to frame an image,” asserts BJ, at the same time admitting that he was “really skeptical at first because I’ve never done a professional shoot before with just a smartphone and what added to my hesitation was that the setup had to be dark and photos can get really grainy. But I’m really happy I took on this project. It’s a source of pride for a first-time feat.”
Mark was similarly impressed, remarking on the unprecedented shift happening in photography because of the accessibility of tools that have allowed people to find their voice. “If smartphone brands, such as Samsung, are able to help them find their passion and tap into their talent, it’s at least worth putting their claim to the test,” he said.
The results of the photo shoots using the Galaxy S7 edge dispelled the initial hesitation, turning skepticism into pure amazement and disbelief.
“I think it’s about time that we take smartphone cameras seriously,” says BJ as he and Mark pore over the quality and sharpness of the images.
“It’s a very different process since it was faster and simpler,” Georgina shares. “But more importantly, I think it gives skeptics, like some of our friends, a chance to see that Samsung knows what they’re talking about.”
“It’s not something you’d consider doing with a smartphone and so I’d consider this as revolutionary for Samsung, and I’m just proud to be part of it,” says Solenn.
For sure, the exhibit has proven that Samsung Galaxy S7 edge can deliver on its claim that it would make people rethink what a phone can do.
“Quality is important, but so is enthusiasm to explore new things. This was certainly a daring move and a new experience for us, but it just highlights how technology can really be a game changer. Capturing a great picture using a smartphone is no less rewarding than if you had taken it using a DSLR,” states Chad Sotelo, Corporate Marketing head of Samsung Electronics Philippines Corporation.
For sure, the Samsung Galaxy S7 edge can help users elevate the space for their photos from Instagram to exhibit walls.
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