First Light – the last word in mobile photography

#MadeOnAMobile was very nearly “MoviesOnAMobile”…

The reason that name didn’t stick was because since 2010 I’ve been using mobile devices for a number of other things – podcasts, animation, QR code trails – and so I didn’t want to limit myself to any particular activity.

In fact, photography was my first port of call. I was using an iPad2 and didn’t use the camera because the quality just wasn’t there. However I would bluetooth images across from my DSLR and colour correct, crop and make other edits using a growing number of apps. Much quicker than using Photoshop.

Today, modern mobiles have amazing quality cameras and while a DSLR will still have the edge on quality, anecdotally I see the mobile phone winning time after time on convenience.

However, for those of you still on the fence, FiLMiC Inc.’s new photography app “First Light” may just encourage you to rediscover your mobile’s capabilities.

It’s the app I’ve been waiting for since I got interested in mobile photography. Like FiLMicPro before it, First Light squeezes every ounce of quality from your camera while providing a series of beautifully subtle features and filters to enhance your images and drive your creativity.

The images below were shot on iPhoneXR and received very little in the way of editing other than cropping and small tweaks in contrast.

First Light has only been out a few weeks so my experience is limited, however I’m going to try to cover a couple of the features that have I’ve enjoyed using the most.

Priority shutter speeds – this enables you to capture light trail photography and other images where you want a longer exposure. What’s particularly impressive is the DSLR quality of how the light is captured – I’ve used a couple of long exposure apps but to one degree or another they look overly ‘digitised’… First Light looks natural.

Grain – This is not a generic layer of grain applied to the image – this is a dynamic grain that reacts to the image giving a realistic analogue ‘film’ grain to your images. Needs to be seen to be appreciated.

Filters – As much as I enjoy using Instagram, these filters are not that. Based on effects created by the looks of a range of actual film stocks, these filters apply a naturalistic look that feels ‘filmicly’ authentic.


If photography is your thing and you’d like to get more from your phone I recommend you give #FiLMiCFirstLight a try. It’s out now on iOS – FREE to download and use with access to a sample of filters and features. The full version has a monthly subscription option or an annual fee of £7.99 – and worth every penny.

Android version currently in beta test for release shortly.

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