A Day In The Life Of ...

A Day In The Life Of Giovanni Savino – An Unbelievably Talented iPhone Photographer


Welcome to our very exciting new column on theappwhisperer.com. This section entitled ‘A day in the life of …’ and this is where we’ll be taking 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 the thirty-fifth installment of the series, you can read the others here if you have missed them so far. Today, we are featuring Giovanni Savino. Giovanni has loved and practiced photography since childhood.

He started to work in photography, film and television when he was sixteen years old and learned the trade “hands on” relying on advice from the best photographers and producers in the annals of TV broadcasting. In the last decade he has produced a number of photo-reportages and documentary films, mainly in the Dominican Republic, which received very positive media exposure and rapidly became important reference and teaching tools in many academic collections.

He continues to pursue his passion for telling visual stories while working for a wide client base, as his experience and versatility lets him tackle and fulfill the most diverse assignments.

Check out the full interview below…

Giovanni prefers to use a minimalistic approach when selecting apps to use and the images in this body of work were all taken with Camera+ and for the few composite images (the ones with superimpositions/double exposures), he used the app Backgroundz. All images in this group, apart from the one entitled ‘Escape’ are from a project explained in detail on his blog, (details below) and are entitled ‘Summer in the City’.

You can find all the links 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.)

First Things First…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


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

GS – I usually make myself a strong Italian cup of coffee in order to open my eyes.

Magic Hour…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


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

GS – Indeed, unless I have been relentlessly shooting into the night the day before.

Photographer vs Mobile Photographer…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – How did the transition from traditional photographer to mobile photographer develop?

GS – I don’t consider it a transition but an expansion. I discovered and started using the iPhone as an addition to my existing arsenal of photographic tools, finding it invaluably useful for specific projects and applications. I don’t call myself an iPhoneographer, I like to tell visual stories and use the most appropriate tool depending on the project and the location.

New Apps…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – Do you like to download new mobile photography apps regularly?

GS – Not as much lately. I have had some frustration in the past when acquiring apps with great reviews that didn’t deliver what they promised. Naturally, I still try to keep up to date with new apps and listen to the whispers (!) from the web, friends and colleagues before I make new purchases.



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – How often do you update your existing apps?

GS – Whenever they ask for it and I have a good Internet connection.

Location, Location, Location…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


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

GS – Any place where I haven’t been before, although I also like to periodically revisit, with a different eye, locations and situations I have photographed before.

Tools Of The Trade…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – Do you also use mobile photography tool apps, such as The Photographer’s Ephemeris?

GS – No I don’t.

Favorite Apps…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – What are your favorite mobile photography apps currently?

GS – I am going through a very minimalistic approach at the moment. I mostly use Snapseed , Camera+, Filterstorm and Backgroundz for editing and creating composite images. Sometimes I play with PhotoStudio, Scratchcam, Touchretouch and CameraBag. Right now I shoot a lot with 6X6, Classycam and, of course, Hipstamatic.



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+, Backgroundz


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

GS – Yes, Flickr (http://www.flickr.com/photos/magneticart/), Instagram (@magneticart), but also straight to Facebook , on Google+ (https://plus.google.com/104244566720530687874), to my Blog (http://magneticpic.posterous.com/), to one of my websites (http://magneticpic.com/) and to a Tumbler stream, which is entirely dedicated to NYC street photography (http://songforawastedlife.tumblr.com/). However, I often think that online viewing is too fast for my liking. Images appear on the screen for a few seconds, only to be swallowed by a constantly refreshing stream and replaced by new ones. To me a photo is a container of information and emotions, a bit like a book, it is a creative process that can be fast but that requires time to grow with us and inside us. So we also need to give ourselves enough time to “read” and appreciate an image. My favorite way to show and enjoy a photograph remains in print form, weather in the pages of a book or hanging on a wall.



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+, Backgroundz


JC – Do you take photographs with your iPhone everyday?

GS – I take photographs everyday. With the iPhone and/or other devices.

Favorite Subjects…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – What are your favorite subjects?

GS – People and society are the main subjects of my work.

Top Five Tips…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Escape’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – What are you top five tips for mobile photography?

GS – One: Think first, then shoot.

Two: Try to always convey something with your images: a story, an emotion, a statement etc. Don’t just shoot for the sake of it. And try not to overshoot.

Three: Be always open to learning from others. Be always ready to share with others what you have learned.

Four: Don’t obsess in pursuing popularity and “followers” with your work. Enjoy the process of your work. Often the journey is more interesting and pleasurable than reaching the destination.

Five: Always concentrate on the CONTENT of your images rather that on the TOOL you are using to capture it and express it.



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – How did the teaching side come along?

GS – I truly believe that sharing my vision and experiences with others, is one of the most rewarding things I can do at this point in my career. I have been lecturing for years in many academic institutions mainly about my documentary films and photo reportages. In 2011 I was invited to talk about my work at the first TEDx Mediterranean event in Cannes France. I offer one to one (or small groups) personalized workshops to teach all aspects of multi-media reportage including film/video capture and editing as well as audio techniques and, of course, photography. I recently had some great experiences and extremely good feedback for some photo walks in the lesser known NYC neighborhoods and I am now offering them through an online service called Vayable (http://www.vayable.com/users/6302 ).



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


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

GS – I always edit my iPhone images on the iPhone itself. That is part of the pleasurable experience with this tool: self-sufficiency and extreme portability.



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – Do you enjoy videography with your iPhone?

GS – Very much so. Sometimes I even suggest it to my commercial clients. Although I could not pursue theatrical release with these videos, due to technical limitations, I am often very favorably surprised with the results and so are the clients. Whatever video I shoot with the iPhone I always edit it on a desktop (e.g. in Final Cut Pro) as I find that editing video on the small phone screen is too too fiddly and unreliable. The iPhone videos are perfect for web use or other promotional distribution. An example I shot for a client can be seen here: http://magneticpic.com/p236072081/h2040bbed#h2040bbed

The Future Of Mobile Photography…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – Where do you see the future of mobile photography heading?

GS – I don’t quite know how to answer this question because I am unsure about the future of photography itself. I have earned a living with images for over three decades and right now I witness a barrage of technological and trend changes happening at an unprecedented speed. Many of the platforms for the distribution of images we had in the past have either disappeared or radically changed. While on one hand there has been a “democratization” of image making, with newer, easy to use tools available to the masses, there’s also been a trivialization (or, antithetically, an over-intellectualization) of the power of images, due to many different factors: the overwhelming image quantity versus quality, an ever-diminishing attention span in the audience, the financial and conceptual devaluation of a photographer’s skills, that, together with an obsessive pursue of social/ cultural validation by an increasing number of amateur or part-time photographers has led to photographic services being offered for free, for “publicity” purposes or simply for ego-pampering. The list could go on. One thing is for sure: iPhoneography is here to stay. It is up to us to shape it and make the best of it.


Where In The World…?


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – Do you think it is country specific, are some nations more “clued up”?

GS – I think the third world is, as usual, still left behind. It will be very interesting to see, if one day the most underdeveloped nations will be given access to such a powerful photographic tool, what they will be able to express artistically and at citizen-journalist level.

iPhone 5…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


JC – What do you hope for in the iPhone 5?

GS – A better lens, a mechanical shutter button, a SDHC external card reader (to easily download into the iPhone images taken with another camera -to process and broadcast them) and an external accessory grip with a PC (flash /strobe ) contact to trigger external flash units. I think it is quite unlikely I’ll see any of my desires fulfilled…



Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+


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

GS – Joanne rocks! I follow her work on theappwhisperer.com with great interest and respect.

JC – Thank you so much Giovanni, the feeling is completely mutual.

Links To All Apps Used And Mentioned In This Article…


Copyright Image – Giovanni Savino – ‘Summer in the City’ – Apps used – Camera+












Contact Details For Giovanni

Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website— TheAppWhisperer.com— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - TheAppWhispererPrintSales.com has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: joanne@theappwhisperer.com


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