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The App Nerds Workshop – Working Around Your Reality By Lola Mitchell

We’re delighted to published the latest article to Lola Mitchell’s App Nerds Workshop Column. This is a truly stunning piece and we are sure you will love it, over to you Lola…(foreword by Joanne Carter).


This is going to be a long post, a little about me, a tutorial and my favorites from the App Nerd Flickr group. I feel like sharing what photography means to me as well as what brought me to iPhone photography.

It is no secret that my father was a photographer so I always had a camera in my hand. However what I don’t share is the reason it was so important for me to document my children’s life. My mother passed away when I was very young, 6 years old, and as a defense mechanism (I think) I have no memories of her. Now you would think that I have an enormous amount of photos from my childhood, but the truth is I do not. I mainly have photos of my mother when she was a model when she was young in Argentina, and then as a contemporary dancer and actress in France. I have probably less than 10 family photos.

When my son was born 4 years ago I made it a mission to make sure I took pictures of his growing up and our family. I also got my first iPhone which was great because taking care of a baby and carrying a big camera is almost impossible. I deeply admire people that do it! The iPhone unleashed something in me. I was finally able to show the world as I saw it. At first I put my kids in a lot of my photos, now they still make an appearance but not constant. I have two kids one is 4 years old and the other is 2. So often my shooting conditions look something like this.


©Lola Mitchell


Now lately I have been wanting to spread my wings and develop my photography further. I am itching to go out and shoot other people. The reality is I am at home with two kids that are of course very demanding. Scheduling photo shoots is almost impossible. I did a few portraits of my neighbor and a friend of mine but these took me 5-10 minutes of shooting….Not what I wish I had but that is the reality.
I started doing self portraits because I was itching to edit and we had been stuck at home sick for about two weeks.

This happened again a flu and here I was sleep deprived and stuck at home. So once I was better and just the taking care of the rest of the family I did what I could. A self portrait while the kids were taking their baths with their dad.

Below is the photo cropped with snapseed and I worked with elasticam to smoosh the couch seems, as well as erased my other shoulder to showcase my neck more.


©Lola Mitchell


Next step Icolorama, I love their brushes although I have to admit I still have lots to learn about how to use them.


©Lola Mitchell


I then went into Procreate and added hair and some eye makeup.


©Lola Mitchell


I thought the bottom was too solid compared to the top so I went back into icolorama.


©Lola Mitchell


Then I went into Luminance and added a filter.


©Lola Mitchell


I liked the effect on top it made me think of trees and water and photo of a puddle with tree reflections, I took back in November with Kitcam. This is the pic I used.


©Lola Mitchell


So I went into Superimpose and blended the two images together. I moved the puddle image so that the tree branches were all the way on top to blend with the icolorama brushes. Played with modes and transparency until I liked the result.


©Lola Mitchell


I really liked the result so I moved the puddle image again to have a branch on my face.


©Lola Mitchell


I went back into procreate and added some hair.


©Lola Mitchell


Then I wanted to add birds because trees and birds go together in my mind I guess. So I used the pic I have used many times now taken at a playground back in january. (I think it is time to start looking up again and get a new pic of birds flying).



©Lola Mitchell


Added the birds on Superimpose, it took two steps so that I could use different blending modes. Here is the result.



©Lola Mitchell


By then I was so happy to be editing a photo and seeing transform in front of my eyes. I had been sick and feeing very unproductive so I started thinking about what I could do about the very dark spot in the photo. You could not really see hair. So I looked through my photos and found another puddle photo with clouds on it.



©Lola Mitchell


So I put these two in superimpose and blended them together.


©Lola Mitchell


Then I was done. I went into Photocopier and added a filter.



©Lola Mitchell


It was a little yellow but I like what it did for my nature theme, so I went into image blender and blended at 50%. And this if the final image with my signature added on iwatermark.



©Lola Mitchell

I have to say I never thought I would do self portraits, I also never thought I would be able to transform reality without having and learning photoshop. I work with what I have to try not to feel restricted by it. That is especially true for me about time, I definitely do not feel restricted by using apps. I always feel like I wish I could have more time to dedicate to photography. The way I see it, I am learning the ropes while my kids are not in school yet. Hopefully in the near future I will be able to create even more.

This week I am finally starting to feature my favorites from our App Nerd Flickr Group.
Please keep posting there are some truly amazing work being posted.

The links to the images below on Flickr are here:
Pat St H
Scott A. Woodward
Andy Royston.


‘Au Printemps’ by Pat StH


©Pat StH

‘Pot of Gold’ by Scott A. Woodward


©Scott A. Woodward

‘Dreamboat’ By Andy Royston


©Andy Royston Apps used (Photowizard, laminar, image blender)

Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website—— 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 - 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:


  • Robert Lancaster

    Thanks so much for sharing this workflow with us Lola!
    I appreciate it greatly and then also realise how much I still have to learn.
    How exciting is that?
    What an inspiration these articles of yours are.

    • Lola Mitchell

      Thank you so much Robert! I really appreciate the feedback. It is exciting, isn’t it? I too have so much to learn. If I did not I think I would feel a bit bored frankly : )

  • Janine Graf

    Oh Lola, this brought a tear to my eye . . . only approximately 10 family photographs?! Your mom sounds like she was an amazing woman; wow! Beautiful image edit; I love how you embrace processing the way you do!

    • Lola Mitchell

      Yes she was. It was hard to just have these amazing models pics and pics of her on stage. Hard to just see the woman behind. My kids will definitely more than that lol. Thank you for the lovely feedback.

  • Justine Foster

    Lola: I am in awe of the amazing, wondrous photos you create with the i-phone. Also, your article was …beautiful, real, communicative…inspiring. Your multiple talents have never failed to delight. I am SO PROUD that you picked our son, and by extension, our family, with whom to share your life. – MA.