3 Steps To The Perfect Disney Photo

3 Steps To The Perfect Disney Photo

I am no photographer, but give me a Disney setting and my iPhone then suddenly I'll think I'm Ansel Adams
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I am no photographer, but give me a Disney setting and my iPhone then suddenly I'll think I'm Ansel Adams (only photographer I could think of) by trying to take fancy photos. We all want that perfect Disney shot of our favorite spots or try to take cute character photos to show off to people, but sometimes you might feel like you will possibly need some skills to get it just right. I'm here to tell you there is no previous knowledge needed to take the best shot you can get all you need is these helpful tips.

1. Don't be afraid to ask cast members for help.

It's always hard to get group photos that have everyone in the picture, if you see any non occupied cast members near by just ask them and they will gladly take the photo for you! Also don't be afraid to ask a character attendant if they can take photos for you with your photo at character interactions, sometimes they can get great candid shots!

2. Angles make everything!

Getting just the right angle can change the perception on a photo and what you want people to see. If you want to get a good photo of the castle in all it's tall glory try getting down at a lower level or just simply tilting the camera up can work too.

(Here I bent down just a bit to get both the tall eeriness of the mansion and the scarecrow)

Sometimes getting the perfect lighting helps too, but you may have to move around a couple times to get it just right. Tapping your camera couple times on where you want the focus to be can help adjust the lighting as well (definitely comes in handy for good night parade photos).

3. Use filters to really bring out the beauty in a photo

This may take some time playing around with filter apps for a bit but once you get the hang of it, it comes really in handy with making your photos look even better. For example, here's a photo I took of the "Elephant Graveyard" at Disney's Art of Animation with no filtering.

Now here's the after photo once I played around with it.

Now it looks slightly more like it does in the films.

Currently my favorite photo editing app is Meitu. Yes it is that app where plenty of people were taking weird selfies like this:

However, if you just simply use their editing option, that is where you go to edit your photos.


Cover Image Credit: Kennady Cantrell

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Cell Phones And Our Communication

How Our Obsession With These Devices Has Changed Society
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There are almost as many cell phone subscriptions (6.8 billion) as there are people in the world, which is 7 billion. Everyone in our society has experienced the impacts of cell phones and the evolution of them. The evolution of the cell phone, the apps we have on our phones, and how social media impacts mental health and everyday lives all go into how cell phones have forever changed our communication with the world.

Cell phones did not always look like the phones we have today, they have changed drastically throughout the years. The first mobile phone was a Motorola DynaTAC 8000x, released on April 3, 1973. This weighed about 2 pounds, took 10 hours to recharge, and held 30 numbers. It cost $4,000.

Then came the first pocket-sized cell phone, a Nokia 6110, released in December of 1997. This was actually the first phone to have features such as games, calculators, currency converters, and calendars and marketed to the general population. And of course, came the first modern smartphone on June 29, 2007; the iPhone by Apple.

This was the stepping stone into the world of cell phone technology we have today. Today, 77% of Americans own a smartphone, while 92% of 18-29-year-olds own one. Actually, more people have a cell phone than they do a toilet. Shocking right? Modern smartphones have allowed humans to communicate with anyone in the world instantly.

150 years ago it would take the Pony Express 10 days to deliver a letter from Missouri to California. Now, that would take just seconds to send a text message. Texting today has divided people into two groups: iMessage and SMS. Those without iMessage capable devices are sometimes excluded from group chats.

Not only are we able to communicate through text message, but also applications. In May 2017 there were 2,200,000 apps in the app store. Apps have made us all feel the need to constantly broadcast our lives and have a desire for instant gratification, receiving likes or favorites on what we post. We've become obsessed.

Although, many apps do actually have a functional purpose other than social or entertainment including, fitness, transportation, weather, personal finance, entertainment, etc. Apps like these, and most others, make things more efficient and time-saving for us.

Phones have enabled us to communicate with people from all the way across the world. Communication has improved from taking months for a message to travel across the country in seconds to send across the world. With the mobility of cell phones evolving each day we are able to put them away in our pocket and pull them out as needed.

Texting has also definitely changed our communication skills with face to face people. There are many people today that are uncomfortable having face-to-face conversations with others. Granted, certain things are a lot easier to say over a text rather than saying it in person. People feel that since there is a screen separating them and the person on the other side they are able to say things that they wouldn't normally say. Texting has also changed our grammar ie. “text talk” (LOL, IDK, HMU, U, WUT, SMH). Some of these phrases have even been added to the dictionary.

As you can all see cell phones have come from a 2-pound brick to a light as a feather glass device that has created improvements for our lives but also brought negative things to light. I explained just how the physical cell phone has evolved, how it brought apps to our lives and the impacts they have on us, how cell has made texting mainstream communication instead of face to face conversation, as well as the social awkwardness that they have created for our generation.

I hope with this information, you have a better understanding how cell phones have impacted our lives.

Cover Image Credit: Faye Flam

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A Sociological Assessment Of A Cultural Object: The iPhone

How a single invention has changed American culture.
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Human communication has evolved tremendously in society over the past few decades. From the United States Postal System in 1775, to the creation of the telegram, then the landline phone, touch tone phone, and eventually cordless phones, e-mails, and now instant messaging and Snapchat—technological progress has become one of the human race’s largest accomplishments. These changes have also influenced business; food can be ordered with a few clicks of the thumb, students can e-mail professors within minutes, and even checks can be deposited in bank accounts with a specific fingerprint.

Collectively, all of this has been made simpler by one such invention- the iPhone. The iPhone has changed the way society views cell phones-- no longer are they used for simply calling and receiving calls, but they now hold entire contact books with hundreds of phone numbers and emails, dozens of apps that are used for entertainment, networking, etc., and as aforementioned, access to entire savings and checking accounts. The iPhone is a cultural object that has shaped not only individual people’s lives, but the entire world.

Wendy Griswold, author of Cultures and Societies in a Changing World, defines a cultural object as “a socially meaningful expression that is audible, visible, or tangible or that can be articulated”. Griswold also writes that a cultural object “tells a story”. The iPhone fits this definition in the sense that it is symbolic of how the culture of entire countries has changed over time. Now because of this creation people have the ability to send lengthy messages within seconds across continents. With the tap of a button, someone in one country can display his or her face on a screen and simultaneously view a family member’s face who is in a completely different country and share a conversation for as long as they want.

These advancements have changed how humans view communication. Because of this technological advancement towards greater speed and efficiency, people have fewer and fewer hardships contacting others. People’s expectations about the response rate of others and how long it takes a message to send have been raised because of the simple fact that in most cases, the sender can see if a receiver has read a message, and also if that receiver is typing a response or ignoring them. The mystery of human communication across distances and not knowing whether the message was received or intercepted, no longer exists partially because of creation of the iPhone.

In 2000, an Apple worker named John Casey proposed the idea of a phone combined with an iPod, but it was Steve Jobs (1955-2011) who first initiated the design of a touch screen phone with the ability to do more than simply call and text; Apple branded this invention the “iPhone”. The first one was released in July 2007 with the ability to support applications via Safari internet search engine, which would allow the condensing of information and mobility in one device.

In terms of an audience of receivers, the iPhone was not geared towards one type of individual. Although beneficial for businesspeople with a multitude of contacts and information that could now literally be held at their fingertips, the device could potentially be used by anyone with an urgent need for communication and access.

However, the iPhone attracted a more affluent demographic because of its price, given that users would have to afford the costs that come with owning the device. When someone is seen holding an iPhone, it is generally a culturally-created sign of wealth and privilege. The advent of the iPhone also changed the age at which teenagers begin using a phone. Ultimately, the iPhone is carried by children as young as twelve and thirteen years old across the nation, and represents a certain status that is increasingly sought after among high school and college campuses. No one wants to receive a “green text message,” indicating that the person with whom they are texting is not an iPhone user.

Griswold also defines the social world in which a cultural object is created, as the “economic, political, social, and cultural patterns and exigencies that occur at any particular point in time”. This element was described above and includes the entire planet which has been affected by the iPhone, specifically those of somewhat higher status. The social world of the iPhone can also be described as one in which people are constantly yearning for something faster, more advanced, and smarter. To appease its consumers, Apple has created 14 different iPhone versions within a 10-year timespan, further evidence of the social world’s constant desire for expedited technological evolution.

Griswold ties each of the components discussed in this article into a concept called the Cultural Diamond. The Cultural Diamond consists of the four aspects previously mentioned: the cultural object-- the iPhone; the creator-- Steve Jobs and Apple; the receiver-- businesspeople, higher class adults, and an increasingly younger population of teenagers; and the social world-- an overarching group of people from privilege and relative wealth who continuously provide a reason for Apple to come out with a new iPhone yearly.

In relation to the Cultural Diamond, all of these components are related and interact with one another to form an object that has representation or purpose that can be interpreted in one way or multiple ways by an audience within society. Overall, the Cultural Diamond organizes these four components very well and allows us to analyze their connection and how they have impacted modern society. The shaping of humanity through the cultural object of the iPhone is evident when a couple is at dinner and both of them are checking Facebook, or when a group of people is waiting on a bus and have their heads down checking work emails instead of conversing. The cultural diamond is not stagnant, but rather cultural objects are constantly changing.

With this type of growth from an Apple product resulting from merely ten years, it is unforeseeable where civilization will be in another ten years.

Cover Image Credit: flickr.com

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