Darkroom: The Must-Have Photo Editing App for iPhoneographers

iPhone Life’s resident iPhoneographer and Managing Editor Rheanne Taylor has a favorite photo editing app that she uses constantly for her polishing her photos: Darkroom Photo Editor (free). But it’s not just her—avid photographers will tell you their all-time favorite filter from Darkroom at the drop of a hat, and a quick look at the app’s review will tell you much users love it. This app offers users a lot of control over their photos with a wide range of options. Access to the basic features of the app is free, but users say it’s well worth $3.99 to get all the premium tools or $5.99 for all the tools and filters. We’ll tell you more about the Darkroom app below, including what  it can do and why we love it.

Related: How to Create & Edit Videos with Apple’s New Clips App

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Darkroom - Photo Editor (Free)

What It Does

If you love to take photos, you’re probably aware of how much polishing of the final image is accomplished in the editing phase. It’s truly amazing how much a photo can change when you edit it, whether with filters or with detailed and specific edits to contrast, saturation, tone, and more. Users love Darkroom because it gives them all of the tools they need to edit their photo exactly how they want to. And if you get the pro version, the settings you can tweak are nearly unlimited.

Some of those settings and features include: size, cropping the photo, rotation, filters, brightness, contrast, saturation, temperature, face, vignette, shadows, color of highlights and shadows, and RGB on a graph that includes black, shadow, midtones, highlights, and white percentages in a photo. There’s also a list with all of the changes you’ve made so you can easily go back to an earlier version of your edited photo. You can even create your own filter in the color tool that allows you to choose a color and edit the hue, saturation, and luminance. While that may seem like a lot, it’s all laid out in a user-friendly way.

Why We Love It

The level of customization available to you in the Darkroom Photo Editor app is unparalleled. All of the features and tools are laid out in a way that’s easy to learn and use. The free version doesn't include all the tools and filters, but it’s not a free teaser version like some apps. You can access a significant number of basic editing features for free with Darkroom. And if at some point that’s not enough, the upgrade cost is a one-time, minimal payment.

It also appears to be an app with developers that really listen to its users—one review even mentions that an issue they had was fixed in the last update so they raised their rating from four to five stars. Darkroom was named by Apple as one of the best 10 iOS apps of 2015, and it’s only continued to improve since. There’s no need to import photos, just download the app and start editing.

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Conner Carey holds a bachelor's in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing and resides in Fairfield, Iowa. When she's not writing, you can find her singing jazz or watching anime. Her personal blog can be found at connerleecarey.com; you can also follow her on twitter @connerleecarey.