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Where do you live?
I live in Mexico City

What kind of art were you doing before the iPhone?
Painting and drawing. But already doing mobile photography since 2005 with a Nokia N95.

Can you tell us what happened when you first started shooting pictures with your iPhone?
I was in awe to have a look at what much could be done from such a little device. It was mind blowing to know that we had in our hands more computing power that those who landed men on the moon. Just like that. Besides of taking lots of pictures, I started to experiment with the new upcoming apps. 

Were you active on Flickr as iPhone usage exploded? Who were the first iPhoneographers/artists who caught your eye?
I believe I arrived late to Flickr, I always rooted for Instagram and later for EyeEm. Flickr is good but other apps were more dynamic and allowed you to interact more easily.

The first iphoneographers that caught my eye were Michelle Robinson, Elaine Taylor, Philip Park, Aylin Argun, Adam Conner, Elisa Badoiu, Ade Santora, Nei Cruz, Todd Leban, and oh, so many more (I hate not remembering them all), some of them were part of the AMPt group. Very exciting times for the mobile photography.

What or who else inspires you? Painters? Photographers? Other plastic arts? Music? Literature?
I think everything sublime, inspires one way or another. Music is my daily companion. Since I was a baby, because my mother was a composer and my sister and I used to play under her piano for hours a day. So, everything I do has a musical background.

On the other hand, I am a very visual person so I’m always moved by a great image be it a photograph, a collage or a painting. Nevertheless I believe all the arts inspire in a big way. Nature too.

What are your go-to apps?
I always start with Snapseed. I find it super convenient. The other ones I use the most are Superimpose X, iColorama, Mextures and Formulas. I really miss Stackables and Laminar very much, I wish we could count on those great apps again.

If you had to choose three creatures, real or imaginary, to be your personal totem pole, what would they be?

A polar bear

A cat

A hummingbird. Can I throw in an extra dolphin somewhere? (Editor’s note: of course!)

How many times have you fallen asleep with the phone in your hand while apping a picture?
Glad to know I’m not the only one. Uncountable times!

Cats or Dogs?
Mainly cats, but some dogs are very cool too.

Beatles, Stones, or Dylan?
I love and admire them all but the Rolling Stones definitely start me up.

Has there been any surprising impact on your life from the iPhone, something you didn’t expect?
I am sorry to say I lost my perfect vision. Which has not been a good surprise.

Do you have a mantra for daytime? For nighttime? For anytime?
“Head up, heart open. Amazing things can happen today. You have to accept whatever comes your way, and the only important thing is that you meet it with the best you have to give. With grace.”

Did I forget to ask a question you would like to answer? Please ask it and then answer!
What is the best advice you ever heard?
It was “Know your apps”, by Michelle Robinson. It makes so much sense always. I remember it every single time I work on my images. Apps can really add to your work or make it look terrible.

A last word perhaps?
Thank you very much, Knox, for the time and effort you dedícate to support mobile photography and art. There’s still a long way to go from here but what we have done has a special dedicated place and time to be found by anyone.

It was a really interesting and fun interview.

I’m glad you enjoyed it, Ileana. Great to get to know a little bit about you and thank you for sharing your work here on Pixels.


Please share any weblinks instagram/social media handles so people can find you.

Instagram: @ilemusi
Facebook: Ile Mont

I posted galleries of Ileana’s wonderful work in March of 2018. I recommend taking some time to visit them. Below is a sampling of her beautifully stylized images. A true iphoneographer!