Retrica for iOS Reviewed: One-Touch Editing
Since mobile devices have almost replaced compact cameras (and freed some space in our bags and pockets), it became incomparably easier to share them. You used to copy your photos from camera to your PC, edit, and finally publish or send. Now it only takes one device to make a photo, edit and publish it. But small devices are not as good at editing as Big Brothers. That’s why one-touch editing with filters became so popular. Another reason is that even a photo taken with a poor camera looks much better after this quick processing.
Well, poor cameras are mostly gone, and multicore processors are inside most smartphones, but one-touch editing became a kind of cult. That’s a cultural phenomenon. And it was created due to these “bug-as-a-feature” services including Retrica.
It’s a tool for making photos look old and stylish. Retrica brings its own flavor, so photos taken and processed with it have its own look. Even Instagram users that have mastered all its filters often prefer to make photos with Retrica and use Instagram (or Facebook, or Twitter and so on) just for sharing. The app has become a kind of cult. Even now when hipster stuff is falling out of trends Retrica has a multimillion fan community.
First of all, it’s an iPhone app. iPad users may also install it from AppStore, but the interface will look like an expanded version of iPhone’s. The developers didn’t optimize Retrica for iPad and don’t intend to. They’re right in their own way. Even latest iPad models with decent cameras are not so easy to use for instant photos.
One of the most noticeable features of Retrica is its real-time previewing. In Instagram, for example, you take a photo first and then try to apply any available filter. Retrica acts another way. You see the preview on the screen and you can select your filters in preview mode. When you take a picture it’s already preprocessed with the filters you have selected. If you insist you can edit photos from your gallery, but it’s a paid feature, so we prefer you learn about it yourself.
What’s next? You can just save your snapshot in your Gallery. But it’s much more interesting to share it via other apps (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) or keep editing in some other app. For example, Instagram will let you create a collage with two or more photos taken with Retrica.
The developers selected the filters so they suit the app’s name. The photos made with Retrica really look kind of old-school. The filters make your pictures look like they have become yellow with decades passing like they’re taken with an analog camera and cheap film and so on. Color distortions may look different; it depends on the original lighting and scene of your photo.
Any filter can be applied at a certain level: 100% by default, from full processing at 100% to full transparency at 0%. If you want to take a clear shot you can just set filtering level to 0 with a half-transparent slider.
Not only about filters
Though Retrica was developed as a one-touch photo editor with instant filters, it has different tools, like collage-maker. You can make several photos and join them into a collage. The resulting picture may as well be exported to other apps for further editing or sharing. You can also apply other effects like Vignette and Blur to focus on what’s most important for you in the photo. The tools are powerful enough to play with blurring frames as you like.
If you don’t want your photos to be recognized as selfies, you can use a timer. This powerful tool will guarantee that you can select the right time for running to your location while your iPhone waits for the moment to take a snapshot.
You can print the photo instantly if you have an AirPrint device connected to your network. Unfortunately, there’s no way to order printing in some center unless you publish it on the Instagram and use some public Instagram photo printer.
As we have said, you can’t just select the picture from your gallery and apply Retrica effects without buying a special extension. But you can make your Retrica photo with effects off and save them to your Photos.
The bottom line
Though the app is basically free, anyway, there is some paid stuff in it. We have already mentioned applying effects to photos. But there are also commercial filters you can preview but not apply. Even the Pro version doesn’t cover all filter sets, some of them are to be purchased separately.
Photos edited by the free version of Retrica have its logo in the lower right corner. You can select the appearance of the logo, but you can’t turn it off without purchasing Pro version. In fact, the logo doesn’t spoil photos and even declares its Retrica-based identity.
The free version used to have built-in ads (that eternal curse!), but now they are removed. So now you’re free to use most Retrica features without having to pay for them. But if you decide to, it’s only up to your wish to support the developers.
Make sure to download the app and check it out! Share your thoughts and opinions in the comment section below.