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All the creative events in town this month have inspired team Saffron Souk to get out there and perfect our skills (or at least make some improvements!) in the art of photography.

Smart phones at the ready, people! We’re taking the minimalist approach armed with some simple kit, limited skills and maybe just a few gorgeous accessories and props thrown in the mix. There is of course a huge amount of skill involved in taking professional photos (have a look at this studio session for example), but on our mission to learn how to make some fabulous photos, we’ve tracked down some no frills sure fire ways to get snap happy.

As for most amateur photographers, our photos usually can use a little something to make them picture perfect, so we’re making the best of our basic photo skills and dabbling in some post-click assistance. Obviously, take the best photo you can (see our Tips for Top Photography blog post for what you should be thinking about) but then let the magic happen with the help of some handy apps and websites.

Here’s our top 5 of the moment for you to give a whirl…


A few different versions of this versatile little app are available and it’s a great one for enhancing your shots. There’s over 50 filters available on Snapseed, like antique, grayscale or contrast for example.

Just fiddling around with the colour settings can transform your average image in to a spectacular one! You can also resize, flip, adjusting the brightness and colour balance and so much more. A goodies for product photo editing, Saffron Souk shop keepers!


We suspect that you’re already Instagram junkies like the crew here at Saffron Souk but if not, come out from under than rock of yours and get it!

It is of course brilliant for sharing your photos, but don’t forget that it’s a handy tool for adding some fun effects and borders to liven up your snaps too. We’re addicted.


If you’d prefer to work on a desktop, then this clever and slightly addictive website is the one for you.

You can touch up, crop, add filters and special effects and go completely crazy adding a range of fonts, frames and other graphics.


This lovely app is ideal for text, frames, masks, filters and graphics like colourful banners to embellish your photos. Great for sharing on social media and for printing too. The designs have a hand-drawn quality and are right up Saffron Souk’ street!


Even the best styled and framed photos can use a little tweaking to sharpen, boost and brighten it up. This is when you call on Afterlight.

It’s a bit of an all-rounder with plenty of wallpaper, texture and filter options along with tools to adjust the exposure, brightness and contrast, cropping, rotating, flipping…the list goes on and on.

We mentioned accessories and all these delicious finds for all budding photographers are available directly from your local merchants and makers of the Gulf:

1. Bow camera strap, handmade by Hayaa


2. Rustom‘s stylish hold-all camera bags come with extra cases for your tablet and memory

cards and are available in black with a choice of blue or red accent


3. Lia&Mia specialize in pretty tie-backs, halos and blankets for photographers


4. The Nest‘s cosy cocoon photo prop


5. Playful sequin and chevron glitter headbands from Desert Roses

If you’re a shopper not a snapper, get your clicks with these photography-themed goodies from the Saffron Souk market place… 

1. Silk ‘snap & click’ cushion, just in at Nittywitty


2. Dixytrix‘s Original photographic prints from Dubai-based Lauran Dixon


3. Miniature ‘capture your life’ painting from Chai Tamaasha


4. Hand-painted Arabic photoholder from Rock Paper Scissors


5. Fun crochet picture frames from Saffron Souk‘ in-house collection of homewares & accessories

Do you use an app or website for jazzing up your digital photos that you think we should know about? Share your tips with Saffron Souk’ creative community and join the discussion over at our members forum