A Day In The Life Of ...,  INTERVIEWS,  News

Mobile Photography Interview – A Day in the Life of Deborah McMillion (Hotel Midnight) from Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Welcome to our very exciting interview column on theappwhisperer.com. This section entitled “A Day in the Life of…” is where we take a look at some hugely influential, interesting, newcomers as well as accomplished individuals in the mobile photography and art world… people that we think you will love to learn more about. This is our 130th interview of the series. If you have missed our previous interviews, please go here.

Today we are featuring highly accomplished mobile artist and photographer, Deborah McMillion from Phoenix, Arizona, USA and her wonderful art. You will love this!

If you would like to take part in our A Day in the Life interview series, please send an email to myself at [email protected] and I will get back to you.

Deborah McMillion

Contact Details



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‘O Begin’ ©Deborah McMillion


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

Formally at dawn. Dawn is more than my favorite time of the day. In summer you have about 3 good hours before the heat builds. I spend a little time with our cat(S) checking out the garden and just enjoy.


‘Mind’ ©Deborah McMillion

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

If I’m going for skies, backgrounds (fields), plants, clouds, or just new colors to sample it is whenever the light is right. Because I’m a Mobile Digital Artist I work more in the studio. And I use the term studio loosely.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

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

My dad bought my first Real camera: an Argus C-3, SLR with this massive flash. I used it to tell my stories. By the time Digital came out that camera became something else when real painting apps came out.  It was a new way to communicate. And add real details like leaves, birds etc into a painting.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Do you like to download new mobile photography and/or art apps regularly?

I like to see my Favorites update more. Right now my go to app has an annoying bug, two of my postcard templates crash and my stamp template is buggy.  I try not to use anything that drops resolution.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

What is your preferred platform, Apple iOS, Android, Windows?

Shh! Apple Developer on Board!  Regardless, Apple, only.


‘Gravity Formula’ ©Deborah McMillion

Would you consider changing platforms and why?

No way!–see above.


‘Plough Lines’ ©Deborah McMillion

How often do you update your existing apps?

The second I see the update notice. I’m usually waiting for it.


‘Clothes Line Bumps Beeline’ ©Deborah McMillion

What are your favourite photography/videography apps and why, what features do you look for in a new app?

I assume these are photography as well as art. I use them on both and all. Autodesk Sketchbook.  Anything like Brushstroke, Toon camera that changes my art into a more casual way to play.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Where’s your favourite place in the world for a shoot and why?

A stand of saguaros. The pass off the I-10 exit for Coolidge has the most amazing gathering. When the wind blows through the needles it sounds like a pine forest. You cannot make up those curves and color.


‘Field and String’ ©Deborah McMillion

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

Flickr. And for a different,reason Pinterest. It’s like giving back to communal knowledge doing that. I joined Instagram but at the time I was trying too many things and got overwhelmed. Instagram lost.


‘Poppy Jessamine’ ©Deborah McMillion

Do you use your mobile phone everyday to take images?

In some way or another, yes. Especially botanicals and weather. You see all those Natural world things in backgrounds etc.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Do you like to use external hardware products with your mobile device for image and video capturing, such as lenses, tripods, external storage and battery packs?

Well external storage. But evidently no.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Do you edit images on your mobile devices or do you prefer to use a desktop or laptop computer?

I do not do any work on desktop. I don’t want to sit long hours at a desk that’s too much like painting miniatures in oils.  The utter freedom of  NOT having a physical studio has not worn thin.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Where do you envisage your mobile photography passion will take you? Have you been involved with exhibitions etc.

Yes I’ve shown for years, in shows I curated, or were curated in or juried.  I’m working on eventually getting someone else to publish one of my books. Or I’d like to do a variety of books from little ‘Zines, to artist books, unbound books, comics. And finally, a Mystery!-that uses all this vast research.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Where do you see the future of mobile photography?

Growing out there more and more just as any means of expression will.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

What do you think is the most popular area of mobile photography?

I’m hoping it’s the photographs that have such a blurred line between photo-fx and painting fx. Or why does it matter? Ask instead how does this make me feel.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

Do you think it is country Specific, are some nations more clued up?

This is an international movement. And it’s been brilliant!


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

If you could select a specification for a smartphone, what features would you select, photographically speaking?

Remember the,first iPad? It had a flower like button on screen you could tap and turn your iPad into a slide show. I loved that. I love and miss digital frames.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

What do you think of Joanne and theappwhisperer.com?

TheAppWhisperer.com is home to many many mobile artists. It is one of the best of the supportive, teaching and sharing groups out there and efficiently run as well as creatively challenging.  

Joanne is that ephemeral voice of the Muse who whispers in our minds, a stalwart Nike with outstretched wings, gathering us all together and with the lightest tap on our backs “create, think, dream, resonate.”  Challenges, tutorials, exhibitions all gathered and if you don’t partake, you were not hungry.


Untitled ©Deborah McMillion

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‘Pas De Quatre’ ©Deborah McMillion

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: [email protected]