A Day In The Life Of Tommy Vohs – An Intriguing, Liberating And Inspiring Mobile Photographer

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Welcome to our very exciting column on theappwhisperer.com. This section entitled ‘A day in the life of …’ and this is where we take a look at some hugely influential, interesting and accomplished individuals in the mobile photography world. People that we think you will love to learn more about.

This is our sixty ninth installment of the series, if you have missed our previous interviews please go here. Today we are featuring Tommy Vohs. Tommy is originally from the Channel Island of Jersey and has been living in Canada most of her life. She has worked as a train conductor at Canadian National and VIA Rail out of Toronto for 25 years and will soon be working solely at VIA as an engineer, driving the passenger trains along the Quebec, Toronto, Windsor corridor.  When she’s not working you’ll find Tommy playing ice hockey, guitar or with spending time with her girlfriend Erin’s two kids; Max and Phoebe.  The iPhone has a very important place in her life and she’s constantly in the ” iPhone position”; shooting, editing, squinting.

Tommy is honored to have had her work exhibited at the Red Church Gallery, CoeHill, Ontario; the MJG Gallery, Parliament Street, Toronto;  LA MAF, Santa Monica, California; the Kiernan Gallery, Lexington, Virginia and Akasha Art Projects, Church St, Toronto.

You can read more about Tommy in the interview below…

You can find all the links to the apps mentioned at the end of this article.

(If you would like to be interviewed for our new ‘A day in the life of …’ section, just send an email to Joanne@theappwhisperer.com, and we’ll get it set up.)

 

Tommy Vohs

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© Tommy Vohs

 

Tommy’s website www.bloodshotmirage.com
Facebook/Tommy Vohs
Artist and IPA: www.iphoneart.com/tombo

First Things First

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘A Different Perspective’ – Leme, Photo Power

 

Joanne – Let’s start at the beginning of the day, how does your day start?

Tommy – I’m a late riser because I work a lot of nights  and a lot of long shifts.  I usually get up just before noon, have some breakfast with my singing cats.  After that ill usually try to figure out which photos I accidentally deleted when I fell asleep on the couch last night with my iPhone in my hand.

Magic Hour

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘City Cycle’ – Leme, Photo Power

 

Joanne – Do you like to head out and take photographs early on?

Tommy – I see the sun come up regularly when I’m working and that’s my favorite time to snap nature shots. Otherwise, I usually shoot between 2 and 5 pm.

Photographer vs Mobile Photographer

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Bus Stop Unravelling’ – Leme, Phototropedelic, Dynamic Light

 

Joanne – How did the transition from traditional photographer to mobile photographer develop? (pardon the pun).

Tommy – I did not own a camera before I purchased my IPhone. ( I haven’t had a ‘ traditional’ camera since my teens.) I took to iphoneography like batter on a fish stick…a cohesive relationship only made stronger over time. It was natural and free flowing and came at a time in my life when I desperately needed a distraction.  Once I got my fingers into the App Store and saw all of the photography apps, I transitioned from playing Angry Birds all night to taking photos of transit and nature.

New Apps

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Crossing College’ – Leme

 

Joanne – Do you like to download new apps regularly?

Tommy – Oh yes. I’m always trolling the photography category at the App Store. I probably get a couple of new apps a week and then never use most of them. If they don’t save in high res I don’t keep them around.

Updates

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘e-motion’ – Leme, Phototropedlic, Image Blender

 

Joanne – How often do you update your existing apps?

Tommy – Daily, blindly.

Location, Location, Location

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘evulsion moodcam’ – Phototropdelic, Photo Power, Photo Wizard

 

Joanne – Where’s your favorite place in the world for a shoot?

Tommy – I have a two part answer.  Northern Ontario for nature shots and on board transit; be it bus, subway, tram or train in any big city.

Tools Of The Trade

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Flyby’ – Lomora, Photo Power

 

Joanne – Do you also use iPhone photography tool apps, such as The Photographer’s Ephemeris and if so do you use it to plan your shoots?

Tommy – I do not use the Photographers Ephermis because I’m not that structured. I like to take risks with light, time of day and so I can’t follow orders. My idea of planning is seeing an opportunity and shooting immediately. I’m very attracted to candid photos; flawed, raw, and a real moment in time. If some one starts to pose or notice me I don’t shoot.  The moment is gone and so is my interest.

Favorite Apps

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Fly n Shine’ – Leme, Photo Power, Image Blender

 

Joanne – What are your favorite, at the moment, iPhoneography apps?

Tommy – Photo Viva to paint photos and really accentuate certain areas.  Dynamic light for amazing definition. Photo Power for its infrared colors and Retinex option Jazz for filters. Leme Pro for the HIGH res output and double exposure camera. PhotoTropedelic for groovy lines. Lomora for filters.

Sharing

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Headless In Toronto’ – Leme, Jazz

 

Joanne – Where do you like to upload your photographs? Flickr, Instagram?

Tommy – iPhoneart.com and my Facebook page are it. Those two sites are all I have time to keep up with.

Frequency

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Into The Sunset’ – Leme, Jazz, Dynamic Light

 

Joanne – Do you take photographs with your iPhone everyday?

Tommy – No, not every day.  I’m very particular.  I won’t take pictures of just anything. My friends offer opinions on what I should be shooting but I pretty much don’t listen to them. I have to be inspired.

Favorite Subjects

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Jack Pine and Mist’ – Lomora, Jazz

 

Joanne – What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

Tommy – Nature, flora and fauna, streetaffiti ( that’s my own classification for my street shots) and bicycles or other transit.

Teaching

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Percolator, Phototropedelic

 

Joanne – How did the teaching side come along?

Tommy – I help my friends out with tips about apps and how to use them. In the future I certainly would be open to holding a workshop. I worry though that I’m just not structured and organized enough to be able to actually teach somebody.

Top Five Tips

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Medora Morning’ – Lomora

 

Joanne – What are your top five tips for iPhone photography?

Tommy – Look for angles or turn your phone slightly for a more Interesting shot. Super Saturate!!! Choose high res apps and shun pixel-eaters. Don’t shoot what everyone else is shooting. Stand out. Print your work. It does amazing things to ones confidence to have a hard copy of your efforts.

Editing

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Osgoode’ – Lomora, Picture Show, Jazz, Image Blender, Dynamic Light

 

Joanne – Do you edit images on your iPhone or do you prefer to do that on a desktop/laptop?

Tommy – I only edit on my iPhone and iPad without exception. I appreciate the limitations of mobile devices. I’m not looking to make my photos perfect in fact I like the flaws inherent to editing on mobile devices.  I have been criticized for not, supposedly, wanting to make my photo the best  it could be but people are entitled to their own opinions. This works for me and I’m satisfied.

Videography

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Partially Cloudy’ – Leme, Photo Power, Image Blender

 

Joanne – Do you enjoy videography with your iPhone?

Tommy – Yes, I’ve used Super 8 to make great videos of my dog, Kiki but that’s about as far as my video experience goes.

The Future Of Mobile Photography

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Pick Up On The Empty Streets’ – Lomora, Phototropedlic, Photo Wizard

 

Joanne – Where do you see the future of iPhone photography?

Tommy – It’s wide open, a gateway to creativity; easily accessible creativity for the average Joe like me.  I think iPhoneography deserves to be in fine art galleries and museums all over the world because it is worthy.  Evolution is necessary and imminent. It doesn’t mean the end of traditional photography to me, just a metamorphosis of the minds who appreciate the art of it.

Popularity

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Platform Change Off’ – Lomora, Photo Wizard, Dynamic Light

 

Joanne – What do you think is the most popular area of iPhoneography?

Tommy – (I’m blanking out a bit here, so I hope I’m answering your question)

Apps like hipstamatic and social sites like Instagram seem to be very popular amongst my friends. Both of those apps/social sites have really opened up the possibilities for all interested people and are probably creating pathways to creativity much more easily than ever before. They are tweaking people’s photos, making them more appetizing to the eye and, in turn, sparking interest that might otherwise have not be ignited.

Worldwide Phenomena?

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Please Bring Joy’ – Leme, Photo Power

 

Joanne – Do you think it’s country specific, are some nations more clued up?

Tommy – I don’t know if its country specific. I think it depends on accessibility to technology.  I know on IPA, there are artists from Botswana, Switzerland, Russia, Japan, Australia, the UK, as well as Canada and the US.  that said, I still go to print shops here in Toronto and have to break it to them gently that yes, in fact, my photos were shot with a phone.

iPhone 5

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Queen Of The Woods’ – Leme, Photo Power

 

Joanne – Are you pleased with the new iPhone 5 for mobile photography?

Tommy –  I’m holding out for the 5S myself because my 4 suits me just fine for the moment.

TheAppWhisperer.com

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘York 3 Departure’ – Leme, iPhoto, Dynamic Light

 

Joanne – What do you think of Joanne and theappwhisperer.com?

Tommy – Joanne and the App Whisperer provide the best insight on everything “apps” and mobile information.  I’ve learned a ton about apps and artist techniques from reading her blog and visiting her page on Facebook. It is great to see and read other artists interviews from all over the world and be introduced to their work.  I think the App Whisperer is a staple for any mobile phone artist. She gets a 10/10 from me.

Links To All Apps Used Or Mentioned In This Interview

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© Tommy Vohs – ‘Queenspark’ – Lomora, Photo Power

 

Leme
Lomora
Photo Power
Image Blender
Jazz
Picture Show
Dynamic Light
Phototropedlic
Photo Wizard
Photo Viva
iPhoto

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19 thoughts on “A Day In The Life Of Tommy Vohs – An Intriguing, Liberating And Inspiring Mobile Photographer

  1. Lovely to read more about you Tommy! Great selection of images… I must get in to IPA more often…

  2. A terrific interview and story to read about your journey. I loved seeing the selection of photos here. “Please Bring Joy” is still my fave. Look forward to seeing new creations.

  3. Wonderful insight into your colorful and creative brain Tommy! I am so glad I discovered you and your work. Your beautiful, vibrant colors and interesting compositions just make me happy. Big hugs!! xo

  4. Thank you so much Cara, Janine, Denise and Cat. My photography has given me a new lease on life, the old me is long gone and thankfully so. My journey through life was almost over and then I got an iPhone. The colours I use represent my new found jubilation for what lies ahead. I’m so thankful to have made a connection with all of you. Xxxxx

  5. Great piece Tommy. I love seeing all your work together and seeing some I’d missed along the way! Here’s to the lovers of colors!!

  6. What a wonderful tour of your gorgeous work and thought processes!! And I also really appreciate your outlook on life 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  7. Thanks Geri, I’m glad you like my work! Cat, from one colour-a-holic to another, I know you get me!! And JQ … Well, what can I say, I so appreciate your comments and input. There are times when this all seems like a blur to me; being in galleries and shows…then I realize it is all real and I have a fantastic community to support me. Thanks to my new family, especially you New Yorkers!!

  8. Wow, the work presented is absolutely amazing. The vibrancy of the colours and the composition of the images and the brilliant use of the double exposures are a joy to behold. I am really glad that I found this article on theappwhisperer. I will definitely be looking out for more of your work too!

  9. Thank you so much Robert! Double exposure holds a story within and I love a good story. From the first moment that I discovered a DX camera app I found it very difficult to stay away. A big thank you to Joanne for giving me the opportunity to show you my stories!

  10. Michael White, thank you my fellow Torontonian! It was great to meet you in the flesh and I look forward to future collaborations, brainstorming, strategizing and shoulder to shoulder showings!!

  11. Sonya Sanchez Arias, to have you as my inspiration and muse is one thing. To have you comment on my interview is the cats meow and to have such an incredible, awe-inspiring artist as my friend is the ultimate gift. I can say with all sincerity that you helped to push me further along in my confidence and vision. I’ll forever be grateful and I love your facey!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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