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Why I'm Now Considering an iPad/Tablet For Photography

by Chris Gampat on 03/15/2010

Myself and Vincent extensively covered tablet PCs and their applications for photographers a while ago. Back then, I concluded at the moment that I probably wouldn’t get one. Despite the fact that still stands, I’m actually considering it now. There are actually a couple of good reasons why as well. More on this after the jump.

Photographers in general have essentially said no to the iPad, at least this version of it. I’ve heard many say that it’s not worth it as it is essentially just a giant iPhone or iPod Touch.

This is true.

However, there are times for photographers that you are meeting a client somewhere and you actually don’t want to lug around a giant printed Portfolio or a laptop. In this case, a tablet PC would be a very nice option. Think about it: It’s got a decent sized screen, can display high resolution photos, can possibly be touch activated, is more portable than a laptop, and may even be the price of a netbook.

I read on Vincent LaFloret’s Blog that he’s ordered a few iPads. Granted, we’re not all doing as well as him, but he makes a good point.

“I plan on converting my entire portfolio to the digital format with these – both still & motion. As many of you know – most art buyers these days pretty much demand that commercial photographers send their portfolios out in a printed book format. So while I can’t ditch that approach just yet – nothing is stopping me from including an iPad in that book as well to share not only stills, but also the video / multimedia work that I’ve done in the past 2-3 years. I’ve been waiting to do this for years – waiting for the perfect device – and I think that this will work perfectly – and allow me to send customized portfolios to clients as well for specific jobs. This is a lot more eco friendly (not to mention easier and cheaper to ship!) current, and dynamic way to show one’s work…I will of course offer to send “just” the iPad if art buyers are into it – but I doubt that the printed portfolio is done just yet…”

He’s got a good point and I can actually relate in some ways. I wouldn’t go so far as treat an iPad as a disposable portfolio to send to clients, but it is a very nice way that is interactive to show it off to them. Additionally, let’s face it, Apple products have always had some sort of wow factor to them. Maybe it’s Steve Jobs and the way he explains how consumers and professionals can utilize their products, but everyone always seems to want something made by the company whether they have use for it or are blind fanboys.

An iPad would be attractive to clients as long as it can display the best of the best of my work. It would also keep my laptop safe just in case something happens. For example, I brought my laptop out into the pouring NYC rain the other day in the safety of a neoprene sleeve and my messenger bag. However, this was the type of rain that can soak through anything. Luckily, my Macbook was fine. But the iPad or a similar tablet would have done the job sufficiently well.

Or maybe I’m just feeding into the fact that so many other tech writers and photographers want one. We’ll see. The fact is though that I am still intrigued by this particular sector of products.

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