Friday, April 8, 2011

Better Cake Photos using the iPad

Screen shot from Shuttersnitch
(click picture to see details)
I have blogged before about how we are always striving to take better pictures of the cakes we make.  The problem a lot of times is the picture in the little mini viewer looks fine, but when you see it on the big screen something is off - too dark, too bright... too something!  This past weekend we found a really cool app for the iPad that allows us to see our pictures on the iPad as we take them on our camera.  The process is called camera tethering, and while it's not the most straightforward solution, it was neat enough that I thought it was worth sharing with you here.

Things you'll need to make this work:
Apple iPad (or iPhone if you don't mind a smaller screen)
Camera that accepts SD memory cards
A Wi-Fi network
Shuttersnitch App ($16)
Eye-Fi SD Memory card (about $40 at Walmart or Amazon)

Eye-Fi is like a regular SD memory card that contains a mini Wi-Fi adapter inside.  It's very cool in itself.  As you take pictures, the Eye-Fi can transmit your pictures to your computer or to sharing sites like Photobucket.  The Wi-Fi capabilities are what allow Shuttersnitch on your iPad to grab the photos.

Shuttersnitch is a an app you get from the Apple App Store.  Once you load it you will configure it with your Eye-Fi account settings so it can communicate with the Eye-Fi card in your camera.

As you take pictures, the app automatically downloads them to your iPad so you can see a large preview (or full size even).  And best of all it only takes about 15 seconds per photo.  Shuttersnitch even tells you all your camera settings (ISO, aperture, shutter speed, etc.)   If you don't like the picture, just adjust your settings or your lighting and take again.

The biggest problem with this solution is taking pictures outside of your Wi-Fi zone.  If you want this to all work anywhere you go, you'll have to invest in a battery operated portable router.  That's just more than I need at this point.  I take most of my photos in the kitchen (or just outside).

It seemed pretty technical, but Chaddy set it up without any issues.  There are several places on the Internet that walk you through the setup, but Chad said that he used the directions at Rob Galbraith's site.

I realize that many of you might not have an iPad.  But if you do, pairing it with the Eye-Fi card and the ShutterSnitch app will definitely help you take better pictures by allowing you to see them on the fly.

Question for today...  Do you like reading articles about how technology can be used in the baking business?  Do you want to see more articles like this?   Tell us what you think in the Comments section!

UPDATE: May 2011 - Just a month or so after publishing this article, Eye-Fi has came out with a firmware upgrade to the Eye-Fi cards that will allow them to create their own wireless networks!  This means that we can now carry our iPad on deliveries and get real time pictures without any additional hardware (the battery operated router mentioned above).  We have been out several times now and it works like a charm!!


  1. Awesome I love my iPad I need to try this one, I have like 3 other apps that I toy with my picture with.

  2. Thanks!! I am definitely going to try this. Thank you so much for sharing this info.


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