“Can’t-Do-Without” – Retrica features (2)

“Let’s live simply in this complicated world”

Digging into stamp, flash, timer and automatic save features

In my last posting, I reviewed four features of Retrica that make photos mysterious. Today, as an extension, I’d like to introduce other features that make photo-taking simple and easy for you – those “can’t-do-without” features which, once you start using, you can’t get by without. For example, stamping the date of shooting, so that you don’t have to look up the EXIF data to find out when it was taken, or a timer for setting a time delay to ensure that a special moment of you and your friends will be captured. After I tried the stamp, flash, timer and automatic save features available at the bottom, Retrica shot straight up to the top of real-easy camera apps in my heart.

Stamping memories into an album

The film camera that my family had in my elementary school days recorded dates at the bottom of pictures. With the camera, we used to take pictures of family trips, summer vacations, and me and my siblings’ graduations as well as me and my friends posing in the neighborhood if a couple of exposures are left in the film. Those old photos have dates on them by which I can measure the distance of time as it fades into the past.

As it happens, Retrica has a time stamp that gives a vintage feel like a film camera. I used this stamp intensively for some time, but now I use all the time-stamping options available. The time stamp can be divided into two sub-features: time stamp and logo stamp. Time Stamp records date and time, while Logo Stamp inserts a simple logo of Retrica.

I took a picture of the cups on the shelves against the wall at my favorite neighborhood café. I applied the Sakura filter to make a subtle blue tone hanging over the picture and then added a film-camera-style time stamp. As a result, the picture was completed with an antique feel as if it were shot quite a long time ago. Now, what if I use the same filter but change only the time stamp? I applied a time stamp of a different style to the picture of the same place and filter. This stamp emphasizes time and shows date in smaller characters below the time. The stamp plays an ornamental role but emphasizes its recording role, transforming the atmosphere of the picture into a completely different tone. 

This time, I changed the filter and stamp. I added the Retrica logo stamp after applying the Lime filter. The Retrica logo stamp with a pretty cursive font makes the photo far simpler but classy. Next, I used the same filter but inserted a time stamp that emphasizes the day of the week. For some reason, this photo exudes a strong urban feel. I think it would be fun if you record your diet or the history of your pet growing using this stamp.

Flash – making things clear and fresh

On the right side of the buttons bar at the bottom, you can find the Flash button – an icon that looks like lightning. You can see what it is for straight away as flashes are indicated with a lightning icon in most mobile phones or cameras. Flashing in particular demonstrates its potential to the fullest in Retrica as this versatile app offers a great diversity of filters.

<Left – flash not used, right – flash used, with the Corsica filter applied>

These are pictures of a rack installed against the wall at my favorite café again. One was taken with the flash on, while the other was shot with the flash off, and the two pictures give completely different impressions. Combining the flash with the filter makes the plain rack look fresh and special as if it were a prop in a published photo shoot. Now it makes sense to me why some photographers use phone cameras for photo shoots. With Retrica’s features offering this level of versatility, I think I can try taking special pictures as if they were magazine photo shoots. 

<Left – flash not used, right – flash used, with the Suji filter applied>

Also, the darker it is, the better flash works. On a late night, I sat in the living room, with only a small wall lamp on, and took a picture with the flash on. Without the flash, the living room came out murky and faint, whereas with the flash on, it came out clear and distinct. When you are going to take a picture and you think it seems darkish or you want to turn a plain space into something unique, why not tap on the lightning at the bottom of Retrica?

Real-convenient features – timer and automatic save

Since I started using Retrica, there have been many days when I don’t really see the need to buy a camera. Among so many things Retrica can do for you, there are two convenient features that, once you start using, you can’t live without – timer and automatic save.

<Press the timer button that looks like a clock, and time counting will start on the viewfinder.>

As is commonly known, the timer allows you to set up a delay, so that a picture will be taken after the specified time. The clock-shaped button at the bottom of the Retrica app is Timer. You can set it to 3 seconds or 10 seconds. Let’s say you are walking along the street with your friends and stumble into a really nice place, which you haven’t expected to find there. You may feel like taking pictures of you and your friends, rather than selfies, with the place fully captured as the background. This is when you need the timer. You can take pictures in any way you like.

<Left – set to automatic save, right – screen coming up right before saving if not set to automatic save>

Slide the buttons bar at the bottom slightly to the left, and you will find the Automatic Save button next to Flash. If you see “A” in this button, it means that photos will be automatically saved. If you tap on this button and see “X” in it, it means that photos will not be saved automatically.

Automatic Save makes it easy and fast to take and save pictures because pictures are saved immediately as they are taken. Even if you have the button turned off, you still have other unparalleled conveniences and features you can enjoy as you can explore the diversity of editing features.

On the screen right before saving, you can see five buttons at the right top. The scissors icon allows you to cut parts of a photo, while the face icon right next to it is used to attach emoticons and the Aa button allows you to key in text. On the other hand, the pen enables you to draw lines by selecting the colors and thickness of lines. Also, press the stamp button next to it, and you can choose from about 85 stamps available in Retrica. Retrica’s Automatic Save is fast in saving pictures, while its editing features allow you to edit pictures yourself before saving, like Photoshop. As both of them are attractive features, I alternate between the two by clicking the button at the bottom, depending on the circumstances.

As a matter of fact, these features were not easy to figure out from the beginning after I downloaded the app. However, the more I use Retrica, the more new features, stamps, filters and designs I get to know and experience, and these experiences enrich my daily life. I am looking forward to tomorrow when Retrica will bring me new experiences and keep records of yesterday and today for me. 

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