Tag Archives: mobile art

Constructing Reality Through Photomontage

  “Connected” – ©Tracy J Thomas, 2016. All rights reserved.

My imagination has always been very vivid. As a child I used to create stories in my mind, spending a lot of time daydreaming and constructing a new reality that was far better than the one I lived. As an adult, that imaginative mind and story construction is most often expressed through my art. Photomontage work is one of my favorite ways to decompress and become lost in a world of my own making.
These two new pieces are my creations from the past two days. I shot the background in each image in Northern Idaho this past year and the Native American subjects are from a photo shoot I did at the Kootenai Pow Wow. All images in each piece were shot with my iPhone and combined and edited on my iPad. 
“The Blessing” – ©Tracy J Thomas, 2016. All rights reserved.



New Era Museum Founder Artist

NEM RoundLogo Transp

I am more than honored to be a “Founder Artist” for the New Era Museum, along with an incredible group of artists. Based in Florence, Italy, NEM is the first virtual museum devoted solely to mobile photography, and is the brainchild of Andrea Bigiarini.

NEM’s mission: “Promote the creation of visual art on mobile devices, in order to spread a form of active thought, which will help to build a new era in society, a new culture, and free our artistic expression even further.”

Click on the photo below to view a listing of the Founder Artists and click on each name to view their amazing work.

Screen Shot 2013-02-27 at 9.38.27 AM

I was also fortunate to have “Illuminati” chosen for the “NEM Fantastic Flickr 8,” curated this week by Roger Guetta. Just click on the photo below to view on NEM.

Screen Shot 2013-02-27 at 9.41.35 AM


Excitement Builds for the LA Mobile Arts Festival

In a mere three days, the epic LA Mobile Arts Festival will kick off at the Santa Monica Arts Center in Santa Monica, CA. This is considered to be the largest brick and mortar exhibition of iPhone art ever created. There are over 600 works from some 200 artists who created that art in 30 different countries.

This show has been receiving an amazing amount of press: The Huffington Post, LA Times, CNET, LA Magazine, Good Day LA, KTLA’s Gayle Anderson and ABC News, MSNBC, Dig Magazine, Glo.com, ManJr. Digital media, Wire and MindshareLA, and WIRED Magazine have already done or are doing pieces on this show.

The founders of the festival, Daria Polichetti and Nathaniel Park, are also the founders of the popular online website iPhoneart.com. When I stumbled on their site back in January after I purchased my first iPhone, I was flabbergasted by the quality of artwork that was being created via this little rectangular piece of metal, glass and plastic.

How in the world was this possible? All on an iPhone???

Forever curious and up for any challenge, I began to purchase and experiment with a plethora of apps. Little did I know that my experimentation with the hopes of replicating something remotely similar to the fantastic art I was viewing, would ultimately rock my world.

I have been honored, amazed, absolutely blown away by the accolades and the opportunity to exhibit in galleries across the U.S. as well as outside the country during my short 8-month sojourn into the world of iPhoneography.

And now six of my pieces have landed in one of the biggest physical shows to date. I cannot even begin to describe my excitement for this event.

The LAMAF team unpacks and prepares to hang the show:

In so many ways I still feel like the quintessential virgin. I gaze longingly at some of the pieces that grace the websites created by fellow artists who have been around for several years now. I can only hope that my own art will take on that same quality of skill and depth as I move forward and continue to manipulate the pixels in hand.

And you had better believe that the iPhone5 and the iPad are both on my radar for the purchase in the coming year. I love my iPhone4, yet I can’t help but imagine the amazing possibilities this ever-changing technology will grant me in the near future.

Now it’s off to pack for a few days at the beach! And of course there will be lots of photos and video for those who can’t make this stellar event.


Summer Photo Show

I am so very pleased to have four of my iPhone pieces chosen to be in the “Summer Photo Show” at The Lunch Box Gallery in Miami, Florida. The work of only fourteen artists was chosen to be in this show that begins August 11th and runs through October 6th. The show is a mixture of photographic styles including mixed-media, documentary and iPhoneography.

The four pieces chosen for this show are shown below.

“Rubber Band Man” – ©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved.

“Hitching a Ride on a Minnow to the Moon” – ©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved.

“I See You” – ©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved.

“Building a New Man” – ©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved.

Here is an excerpt from the official press release:

“The Lunch Box Gallery is pleased to announce for the second year its group exhibition “Summer Photo Show 2012”, featuring the photography work of fourteen artists. The showcased pieces are a result of a call for entries oriented to national and international visual artists working in all styles of photography including any mixed-media art that utilized photography as one of its forms of expression. All photographic methods, formats, types and schools were welcomed.

In this show, The Lunch Box Gallery is exhibiting works of insightful conceptual ideals materialized through exceptional craftsmanship, which are intended to represent fascinating takes and points of view in photography nowadays. The thought behind the image of the artist is very important in this show, yet as important as the final visible result. The range of photography tendencies to be found in the show is vast: from conceptual and documentary photography, to narrative photography, photo-essay, iPhoneography and photo-collage; touching on topics like obsessive-compulsive tendencies, the demystification of the “happily ever after”, performative images that play with childhood materials to reflect on how they determine us, or the mistreated young Muay Thai boxers from a Bangkok slum. They all convey on representing an individual concept and a very particular way of externalizing it.

Photographers participating in the show include:

Sarah Tortora (Connecticut), John William Keedy (New York), Noah David Bau (Boston/Bangkok), Amy Leibrand (Ohio), Miranda Maynard (North Carolina), Lissette Schaeffler (Miami), Aimee Hertog (New Jersey), Dafna Steinberg (Washington DC), Ted Oonk (The Netherlands), Luisa Mesa (Miami), Troy Colby (Kansas), Ramesh Pithiya (Washington DC), Naimar Ramirez (Puerto Rico) and Tracy Thomas (California).

The “Summer Photo Show 2012” will be opened to the public on Saturday, August 11th from 5:00 – 10pm, at 310 NW 24th. St. Miami, FL 33127 (Wynwood Art District) / Regular business hours Tuesday – Saturday 11:30-5pm or by appointment.”

So once again I am humbled and blown away by the wonderful reception my iPhoneography is receiving out in the “real” world. It is such a joyous means of expression for me and I absolutely love that others are finding pleasure in my work.


Tidbits of This and That

Just some general news and video shares today. My iPhoneography solo show is set to run August 8th through September 5th at Gallery 1075, 1075 West Capitol Ave., West Sacramento, CA. There will be an artist’s reception on Thursday, August 9th from 5-7pm and all are invited if you are anywhere near the Sacramento region! I think it will be a fun introduction to iPhoneography for our local community.

I am very honored to be included in the following video along with some of the biggest names in iPhoneography. The video was created by Knox Bronson who is the curator for the site Pixels: The Art of the iPhone.

In 2010, I was the first of two recipients of the View of Farmlands Art & Ag Project public art grant in Yolo County. With the grant I was able to visit a number of local farms and create a photographic series that is currently on tour throughout the county. National Endowment of the Arts Chairman, Rocco Landesman, has stated the Art & Ag Project should serve as a model for the rest of the country. I had the pleasure of performing a video interview with Mr. Landesman when he paid a visit to YoloArts to learn more about the program.

The following video highlights the Art & Ag Project and you can view one of the pieces in my series at about 7:21. I am proud to have played a part in the beginning of this wonderful program that benefits both artists and farmers.


Carnival of the Bizarre

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “Illuminati” – Apps used: vintage cam, camera+, perfectlyclr, juxtaposer, pixlromatic, scratchcam


Since beginning my journey in iPhoneography my work has taken a number of iterations. But no matter how far I stray, I always find myself gravitating back to the bizarre, the whimsical, the slightly humorous oddities that make you pause and go “Hmmmmmmmm…”

I have always been intrigued with anything that exists outside the box of “normal.” Not much of a surprise since my childhood was anything close to normal; but I think my inherent sense of curiosity is what drives my attraction towards things of the bizarre nature.

Life would seem oh so boring if everything were white-bread perfect, dressed in a pinafore and a pair of Mary Jane’s.

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “Asphyxia” – Apps used: vintage cam, camera+, perfeclyclr, juxtaposer, pixlromatic, scratchcam

When I was a kid, my imagination ran wild and I was constantly drawing up plans and building strange contraptions out of scraps of wood, springs, tin cans, rubber bands and basically any spare part I could get my hands on.

I was certain I could build a rubber band powered space machine that would launch me to the moon and even devised a plan to build an amusement park in my backyard out of cardboard and lumber. Most likely influenced by my affinity with Jules Verne, there was rarely a day when I wasn’t dreaming about my next gadget.

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “Tin Can Rabbit” – Apps used: vintage cam, perfectlyclr, camera+, juxtaposer, pixlromatic, scratchcam

Through some subconscious connection to my young, creative mind, the last few weeks have moved me towards a more Steampunk oriented phase of my whimsical photography. I am suddenly envisioning strange breathing apparatus, windup rabbits, mechanical x-ray eyewear and parasols that illuminate one’s path.

In ways I feel like I am creating my own Carnival of the Bizarre. Soon you might just find me standing on a street corner balancing a top hat and barking out an invitation for you to take a peek through the curtains at all the oddities I have created.

You can leave a penny in the tin cup…


Mobile Art Fanaticism

I fell into the world of mobile photography from a space of unbridled curiosity. I am a professional photographer by trade and have been shooting my work with DSLR cameras for many years now. All the sudden buzz around the abilities of the iPhone caused me to wonder.

In January of this year I decided it was time to dump my Motorola and upgrade to an iPhone. This was one of the best decisions I have made in a long time. I began to use the native iPhone camera app to take street photos and instantly loved the freedom it provided. I could whip out this little piece of metal and glass in a heartbeat, aim and shoot. Soon I found myself capturing moments I would surely have missed by the time I set everything I needed to set on my DSLR.

One thing led to another and I soon found myself mesmerized by the multitude of apps and the boundless editing possibilities they provided. Some for free, others for a mere buck or two.

I have not in any way traded my professional DSLR nor my aspirations to continue my documentary work for my quirky creations on the iPhone. I simply feel I have found another grand tool to add to my arsenal and am finding great pleasure in the discoveries.

There have been several wonderful websites and communities that have encouraged my sudden blooming of mobile art fanaticism. Here are a few of my recent humble accolades and a number of sites I feel are well worth a follow:

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “Blue” – Apps used: vintage cam, filter mania, picture show, snapseed

“Blue” was recently chosen by the Rebekah Jacob Gallery in Charleston, South Carolina to appear in the “Ways of Seeing: Phoneography” exhibit opening July 12th. This will be the fourth showing of my iPhoneography in a traditional gallery setting since I began my obsession in January, however this was quite an honor due to the gallery’s great reputation and the fact I have ancestral ties to this beautiful city. So if you are in or near the Charleston area, hop on by the gallery in July and take a gander at some wonderful work by a variety of amazing mobile artists. You can receive updates on exhibits by following @rebekahjacob on Twitter.

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “Deep Inside the Time Machine” – Apps used: vintage cam, juxtaposer, camera+, pictureshow

“Deep Inside the Time Machine” was recently chosen by the Mobile Photography Awards for their Weekly Showcase (May 20th to June 6th). The Mobile Photography Awards is at the forefront of promoting mobile photography and helping it move to the next level in the art world. Their 2011 award winners have been on display at the Arthaus in San Francisco (the exhibit runs through the end of June) and were recently featured at the San Francisco Fine Art Fair. Both shows brought a ton of positive press and feedback. Several pieces have sold from this show and brought in over a thousand dollars each which speaks volumes to the acceptance of the medium by art collectors. Give a follow to @MobiPhotoAwards on Twitter.

Here is a news spot on the Arthaus show:

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “The Tenant” – Apps used: 645 pro, perfectlyclr, juxtaposer, pictureshow, scratchcam, modern grunge

“The Tenant” was recently chosen for The App Whisperer’s Jubilee Showcase. I adore the App Whisperer site. It is filled with invaluable information, interviews and tutorials by some outstanding mobile artists.

The individual behind The App Whisperer is founder Joanne Carter, no stranger to photography herself: “Joanne Carter is the Founder and Editorial Director of TheAppWhisperer.com. A Professional Photographer and Associate of the British Industry of Professional Photographers, BIPP, as well as a Professional Journalist, specializing in Technology. A contributor to National and International publications, including DPreview.com, The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Professional Photographer, NikonPro, Graphix, Digital Arts, Readers Digest, Popular Photography & Imaging and Which? consumer magazine and ePhotozine.com.”

If you are not already following @TheAppWhisperer on Twitter then you are missing out on the party. There are currently over 17,000 followers.

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “When Houses go to Heaven” – Apps used: vintage cam, juxtaposer, filter mania, scratchcam

“When Houses Go To Heaven” was recently chosen as a favorite by the developers of the App “Scratchcam” as one of their Five faves on Flickr. This is one of my favorite go to apps for editing and I know it is also a favorite app of a plethora of other iPhone artists. This app consistently receives 5 stars and is an inexpensive $1.99 to download from the iTunes App store.

Give a follow to @ScratchCam and keep apprised on updates, contests and featured photos.

©Tracy J. Thomas, 2012. All rights reserved. “The Day the Circus Came to Town” – Apps used: vintage cam, juxtaposer, camera+, scratchcam

“The Day the Circus Came to Town” was recently chosen for Pixels: The Art of the iPhone. Pixels is one of my favorite sites to view fantastic art by some extraordinary iPhone artists. The online gallery is curated by Knox Bronson, who reviews one piece at a time and hand picks the pieces that will be shown.

I have been fortunate enough to have around twenty of my own quirkier pieces chosen for Pixels and was even honored with a “Pic of the Day” for “On Pointe.” (view here)

Make sure you follow Pixels on Flickr @P1xelation to be blown away by some beautiful art.

My favorite community of iPhone artists resides on the site iPhoneArt.com. Since I joined the site in January I have met the most outstanding community of artistic individuals who go out of their way to support, applaud and share their knowledge with each other.

I was blown away to receive Artist of the Day on two occasions already and am consistently honored by the feedback I have received by fellow artists on this site. I look forward to my daily visits there to peruse the incredible iPhone art and to applaud and encourage others in the community.

iPhoneArt.com and the Santa Monica Art Studios have recently joined forces to present The LA Mobile Arts Festival 2012. This is destined to be an exciting, cutting edge event that will certainly give awe to the masses. There is currently an open call for entries through July 15th at LA-MAF.com. You can also find out more by following @MobileArtFest and @iphoneartdotcom via Twitter.