By Victoria Detmering

Gone are the days of forgetting your camera at that special event only to miss capturing an impromptu moment with family friends or loved ones. Now, it’s but a click away. Cell phones have replaced most of our traditional cameras and now feature high quality camera lenses and the most efficient photo apps.

The holidays are one of those special times when you just want to share memories that you are making with the ones you love. With the dozens of different photo sharing apps now available, almost anyone can be a photographer and capture holiday moments.

Many know of the popular app called Instagram, available for Apple products, Android camera phones and through a third-party app for Windows phones, in which you can change the filter of the photo you upload, add a caption and share it with your followers. It’s a huge favorite, but there are so many other photo applications that take it a step further. These are a few that I found especially interesting and innovative.

Many of you might be familiar with the Flickr website, where you can upload your photos and share them. Well, there is also a Flickr app and it’s free and available for iOS, Android and Windows. According to Forbes magazine, “It’s the best mobile photo app out there.” Flickr has many intriguing features including powerful editing tools such as customizable filters, zoom, exposure points and endless uploads at full resolution. You can even share straight from your phone.

The next app is for the artsy, creative types who want to make their photos a bit more striking. The app, VSCO Cam is free and available for iOS and Android. It’s a very innovative way to enhance your pictures. There are dozens of filters you can choose from, and you can adjust the exposure and share your pictures easily. An interesting feature is that you can compare and contrast your original image with your edited version simply by holding the picture down. The app has great and inspiring stories and pictures in their journal section. This app is great for scenery shots, too. Another great feature is that when you post your photos and hashtag #vscocam, you automatically have a chance to be featured in their weekly selection.

If you’re looking for something a bit different for your photos try the app Over. Over is only $1.99 and available for iOS and Android. With this app you can add text and/or artwork to your photos. The app features standard and custom-made fonts and beautiful artwork. It’s very easy to use and you can immediately share your newly designed picture. This app could even be great for work instead of using Photoshop, for example.

Finally, there is an app that’s great for the creative types who enjoy working with photos. It is called Tangent, costs $1.99 and is available for iOS and Android phones. You simply take a picture or use one that is already in your camera roll and let your imagination take over. There are 35 simple, customizable styles that combine shapes, patterns and blends them together perfectly.

With all of these apps it will be hard not to have the best picture of that unforgettable moment. While you are walking around Ellicottville, which already looks like a postcard in the snow, why don’t you take a picture to capture that wonderful keepsake in time?