Dec 5, 2009
I’ve been playing around with two apps that perform simple grading adjustments: PS Mobile, which Adobe finally released worldwide; and Mill Colour, an app written by London/New York/LA post house The Mill. Before I start, there’s a really good article on Phil Green’s site which helps with the grading terminology.
PS Mobile has a nice simple interface with a menu bar in icon form at the top of the screen and undo/redo controls at the bottom, whether the iPhone is in Portrait or Landscape mode. The icons at the top perform image functions, exposure and saturation operations, filters and finally effects. The colour controls are quite intuitive, though not the most responsive. There’s a lag when you drag sideways to affect the saturation or exposure for example.
Here’s what the interface looks like.
As I mentioned earlier, it’s a nice simple interface and it’s simplified further when grading the photo. Here’s the saturation control which is increased or decreased by swiping across the screen.
And this is the colour tint interface.
Aside from the frequent performance lag I would’ve wished for more fine-grained controls as well as separate RGB curves. PS Mobile is a free download from the App Store.
A disclaimer first before I start on this app. I used to work at The Mill years ago. I often think of the place as my alma mater!
I wanted fine-grain controls and here they are! With Mill Colour photos can be graded by adjusting Lift, Gamma and Gain and each with individual RGB sliders. Actually, can I have slightly coarser-grain controls now? The sliders start at 1.0 and then increment up or down by .02 values. It would be a lot more useful to be able to adjust those increments.
In performance Mill Colour is everything that PS Mobile isn’t: the interface keeps up with you, doesn’t have any lag issues and looks clean and uncluttered.
As with PS Mobile, Mill Colour has a set of looks and in this app they feel more professional. To demonstrate the subtlety of some of the looks here are the Print and 70′s look.
There is one thing in the interface which is really distracting and not in the iPhone aesthetic: the horrible button feedback glow-flare.
Aside from the controls adjustments and the button feedback issue, the app is a joy to use. Mill Colour is a free app as well.