Did say: oh for more time to take more photos.
Now say: oh for more time to take more photos. AND:
Why is it that I'm having more fun taking photos with my iPhone lately than with all the (relatively) expensive camera gear I have at my disposal?
Basically, I think it's easier to take good photos with an iPhone. By 'good photos' I mean photos that grab the attention, perhaps that say something, that are worth the time spent looking at them. Not necessarily technically good: a lot of my recent stuff (I'm writing this on 2009-08-17) is doubtless technically poor with regards to focus, white balance, blah blah; but good in the sense of worthwhile. Also, my iPhone is my phone, which means that by definition I almost always, unless underwater or in an MRI scanner, have it about me. It's so easy to whip it out. You just can't do that with an SLR.
And the other reason is that it's very forgiving. The built-in badness of the iPhone is akin to the badness of the Holgas, the Lomos, the Box Brownies, the old and toy cameras favoured by the Light Leaks type artists. Indeed there exists at least one iPhone application that emulates the output of these very devices by taking a raw iPhone camera image and applying one or more distortions or noise filters to it. Instantly the appeal of the photo is increased. From an image quality point of view, it does seem true that less really is more.
That makes the iPhone sound like a crap camera, which it's most definitely not, especially the 3GS one, but it is very limiting, and fairly inflexible, and you have to build its whims and inadequacies in to your vision of the final picture, because there's nothing you can do about them. This is a big part of the fun. It also means that there's a 'shrug' factor. There's a low ceiling to the quality of this image, so I may as well not bother to tweak it in Photoshop or whatever. It's about accepting the imperfections, instead of striving for perfection. So, the vast majority of my recent iPhone images are unedited, and in fact the only edits are crops, and rotations. It's sort of become a matter of principle, although that's not to say I won't ever fiddle with them. Just that I don't like to. There's a sort of purity there, which is gone as soon as you tweak. I'm not saying that there isn't a place for tweaking. Just that this isn't it.
I didn't suddenly become a better photographer overnight, yet I feel my latest stuff, taken with my iPhone, is a cut above much of my previous stuff done with stupidly expensive SLRs and lenses. Whether this means I will eBay my expensive kit remains to be seen. I'd first like to be sure it's not just a phase.
Ciao for now.