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Mobile Photography & Art – My Top Five Apps by Deborah McMillion (Hotel Midnight) from Phoenix, Arizona, US

We are revitalising our Top Five Apps section to our Photo App Lounge column. This a section within TheAppWhisperer where we ask highly accomplished mobile photographers and artists to list their top five apps and to explain why they have selected them.

Kicking us off today is one of my personally favourite mobile artists, Deborah McMillion. McMillion’s art is brilliantly original, elegant and often surprising, much could be said of this artist herself along with intelligent and beautifully charismatic. You’ll love this.  (foreword by Joanne Carter).

To read others from this series, please go here.

“OF COURSE, I do have more than five apps that I use. Sometimes one app does something similar to others, it just depends on comfort level. My beginning go-to app is usually SKETCHBOOK from Autodesk. Since I’m a paint artist more than photographer I used to begin with a good sketch, then paint. Since moving to iPad art those lines have gotten very thin. But for this piece I began with ARTSET PRO. This app so truly mimics a paintbox it is the app I teach fine artists transitioning to the iPad. I use it here to get a rich oil paint ocean. I use the ocean as a base alongside of my photograph of monsoon clouds. I had a lucky catch of a dove with wings spread. They are spliced together using Sketchbook‘s blending modes.


… in Sketchbook the next layer after that is a photograph of my mother from my digital file collection. I used another favorite app, PHOTOWIZARD, to pop mom out of her background (magic wand). I add a gold curtain, some birds,  hand painted color tinting and redraw her hair etc in Sketchbook. 



She has a pass through PhotoWizard’s filters, HOTWAX, to create a subtle outline effect. Mom is layered with an oval locket once mine, chain and is added as the final layer. The locket has been cleaned up with an OVAL BRUSH in Sketchbook. After this, to give the whole thing a seamless look, I will run it through ALIEN SKY, FORMULAS, DISTRESSEDFX, or some of Sketchbook’s many beautiful blending modes. 


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