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Posts tagged “nettie edwards

Yankee Doodle Nettie

Well, it finally seems as though the rest of the planet is waking up to what we at Fotofilia have known for yonks – that our mate Nettie Edwards is a pioneer and genius of the mobile photography world. Never one to blow her own trumpet, I’m happy to give a quick fanfare on her behalf.

Nettie, who is leading another of her ground-breaking mobile photography courses here in November, has just been named Mobile Photographer of the Year in the 2013 ax3 American Aperture Awards. As if that wasn’t enough, images from her Versailles Grand Canal also won the Mobile Landscape, Seascape and Nature category AND her iPhone video artwork Harriet’s Breathing won the Mobile Moving Image and Video category. No mean feat.

A HUGE congratulations to Nettie from Fotofilia! Read more and see more of her work at

Here’s just one of her beautiful, and now award-winning, images…

Image copyright Nettie Edwards

Image copyright Nettie Edwards


Welcome To Nettieworld

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Stop me if you’ve heard this before but the very first iphoneography course in England, if not the UK, was held right here at Fotofilia, led by the wonderful Nettie Edwards.  Well, we’re doing it again, with a few changes. For some time, Nettie and I have been discussing ways of broadening the audience for mobile photography courses and we think we have planned a real corker. Here’s the full blurb…

Introduction to iPhone Photography with Nettie Edwards

Saturday November 9th 2013: 10am to 5pm

Yes! The return of Nettie Edwards’s legendary iFotofilia workshops! We were the first place in the UK to run iPhone photography workshops and since then, millions more people have discovered that the best camera is the one that you have with you. The iPhone in your pocket is a camera and powerful image editing tool combined, but do you know how to get the best out of it? Join internationally renowned iPhone photographer and Fotofilia regular Nettie Edwards for an exhilarating and inspiring day of Creative Smartphone photography.

The workshop will cover:

  • How to take creative photographs with your Smartphone
  • How to extend the capabilities of your Smartphone’s camera, with alternative shooting apps and add-on hardware
  • How to transfer your photos from phone/camera to an iPad
  • Introduction to some excellent photo processing apps that cost no more than a cup of coffee.
  • How to upload your photographs to social Media sites

Please note: this is a beginner’s course, but you do need to know the basics such as purchasing and downloading apps. Nettie’s area of expertise is iOS devices (iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad). However, if you shoot with DSLRs or Android phones but have an iPad or iPod Touch, you’ll still enjoy this day. If you want to ask any questions before you book, contact Nettie:

Spaces are limited and Nettie’s workshops and presentations are always a great success, so book early to avoid disappointment!

A bit about Nettie: Nettie Edwards (@Lumilyon) took up photography 13 years ago, following a successful career spanning two decades as a Theatrical Designer. In 2009 she embraced mobile art and photography and has not looked back since. Her mobile career is exploding at a phenomenal rate and she has won a huge number of awards and accolades including: winner, Fine Art category, 4th Julia Margaret Cameron Awards and runner up: 2013 Lumen Prize for Digital Art. She was a Lead Juror for The Mobile Photography Awards 2011 & 2012. Her work has been published and exhibited extensively including Mobile Photo Paris and the LA Mobile Arts Festival. Nettie runs Mobile Arts and iPhoneography workshops and is featured in Mobile Masters – an ebook featuring 50 of the World’s leading Mobile Artists and Photographers. Nettie is the first ever Mobile Photographer to have her work exhibited at the birthplace of photography: the Fox Talbot Museum, Lacock Abbey, England, as one of six photographers featured in the exhibition “Arrangements in Black and Grey, Black and White Photography in the 21st century” You can read more about Nettie on her blog To look more closely at her work, go to her Flickr Photostream here –

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Copyright Nettie Edwards

Places on this full day course are just £50. Contact us for availability.


Canal Plus: The Next Instameet

It’s been way too long. But finally, the Birmingham Instagram Group (which I am co-administrator of) has finally announced it’s next, and second, “Instameet“.

This time it’s a canal-based stroll, starting at Brewsmiths cafe near Snow Hill station’s Livery Street entrance ( and then heading along the canal towards the heart of Birmingham city, taking in Brindley Place, Gas Street Basin and the Mailbox. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if a pub or cafe didn’t feature somewhere in the itinerary too.

As usual, everyone is welcome to come along, and of course, it’s free! But please let us know if you plan to come along so that we have some idea of roughly how many people to expect. Remember, you don’t have to be a “serious” photographer to take part, or even very experienced in making photographs with your phone’s camera – but chances are, you’ll pick up plenty of tips along the way.

You will find the B.I.G – Birmingham Instagram Group, not entirely surprisingly, on Instagram. Search for @igersbirmingham. Conveniently, this is also our Twitter handle. And start tagging your images with a #igersbirmingham to be included in the growing pool of great images from the West Midlands, or by West Midlands photographers.

Oh, and you might also get some advanced notice of a forthcoming event which will be of interest to Instagrammers. You heard it here first…


Back Into Lumilyon’s Den


Image by Nettie Edwards


Fotofilia regular, Smethwick‘s second most famous celebrity (next to Julie Walters), and my good mate, Nettie Edwards returns to fotofilia this Sunday (27th May, 11am-4pm) for a kind of “follow-on” to her previous iPhoneography courses, entitled “Next Steps in iPhoneography”.

This one, she tells me, will be more practical in emphasis and will include, among other things, printing and layering. So if you think you’d like to push your iphone photography along a tad, get yerself booked on to this workshop. Nettie is always entertaining, and as one of the country’s top iphoneographers, is the ideal person to spend a summer afternoon ishooting with.

Here’s a few more examples of her work to whet your appetite…

Image by Nettie Edwards


Image by Nettie Edwards

To get a place on the course, email me first to see if there’s space, then pay online at!pay

See more of Nettie’s work at

The B.I.G. Start

“It started with a cake”, as the prematurely shiny-headed fella from Hot Chocolate very nearly sang in 1982. And a coffee. Like so many inspired ideas, this one had its roots in a caffeine-fuelled conversation at Brewsmiths with leading iphoneographista Nettie Edwards a few months ago. Nettie had been telling me about the excellent exhibition by the London Instagram Group and the seed of thought, amply fertilised by “chocolate porter cake”, was sown.

When Nettie came to speak to one of the fotofilia clubs last month, we discussed the idea in more depth and thanks to Nettie’s contacts, we managed to become the first official Instagram group for Birmingham and the Black Country. The process involved, among other things, getting our own special authorised logo from the Instagram peeps and checking if there was already a group registered for this area. Luckily, there wasn’t and so Birmingham Instagram Group was born.

The official logo for B.I.G.

The idea is that there will be “instameets” (exactly what they sound like), exhibitions, competitions etc. Nettie and I are the administrators at the moment but others may be brought on board at some point.

Fotofilia is the obvious centre for the group, being somewhere to meet (if needed), exhibit, and so on. But this is not about fotofilia as such – as I explained to someone recently, this is the “hobby” part of my photography and its given me back that extra bit of creative mojo that can start to flag from time to time when creativity is also your livelihood.

If you’re an “Instagramer”, please follow us – @igersbirmingham on Instagram.

The BIG is also on Facebook

Twitter: Yes, we are fully tweeted up too – @igersbirmingham

Birmingham Noir

I thought I’d bring you a few images from a little series of iPhone shots I’ve been working on which have a distinctly Noir-esque feel to them, hence my description of “Birmingham Noir“.

I’ve begun pushing my iphoneography into a more “constructed” phase. The images in this series are composites – often a studio-taken portrait combined with a (usually nocturnal) location shot to suggest a narrative, whilst borrowing some of the visual traits of Film Noir.

Here’s my latest effort, featuring the eminently Noir-ish Joel Hicks…

Copyright David Rann 2011

As usual, all of these images were taken and edited on the iPhone 4. In case you’re interested, the layering of two images was carried out on the excellent “Juxtaposer” app (thanks Nettie Edwards for the tip-off).

With Jo Walter. Copyright David Rann 2011

And just one more, with Kat photographed during our last “Night Photo Safari” coupled with street shots from the same evening…

With Kat. Copyright David Rann 2011

That’s all for now – HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Confronting Instagramaholism

I turn up my collar as I ascend the steps. Not because I’m cold, but because I am afraid of being seen by someone I know. I walk into the room and find a seat, carefully avoiding eye contact with those already seated, the other people like me.

Before long it is my turn. I stand, nervously. I clear my throat, and in the steadiest voice I can muster I say the words that I have known for some time, but been afraid to utter. “My name is David Rann, and… I’m an Instagramaholic“.

So there it is. I thought I could try it just the once, see what all the fuss was about, and then leave it alone… or at worst, to use it very occasionally on a recreational basis. Oh, how wrong I was. Before long I found myself checking in before I’d even had breakfast, and again before going to sleep at night.

What am I talking about? Instagram. That old devil called Instagram. iPhone app of the year.

So what is it? It’s an app that enables you to upload images from your phone or computer (and so from your camera) or to take pictures which can then be put through one of the 17 or so effects filters before uploading for fellow addicts to peruse. These filters mainly come with their own borders too and your shot can be tweaked to to show a clear spot surrounded by soft focus. All of the filters have their own distinctive, usually very retro, look. Instagram images are square once uploaded so you can either pre-crop or crop during image selection in Instagram.

It’s very simple to produce striking and stylish images and present them to the world. And this is definitely a worldwide addiction. If the demographic I’ve come across is anything to go by, it’s especially big in the far east but I’m also currently following Instagrammers from Brazil, Europe, USA and Scandinavia.

You see that’s how it works: you “follow” people whose work you like and in turn, a few people hopefully also like what you’re doing and follow you. And that’s perhaps the dangerous part, addiction-wise. Every little message that appears on your phone to say that someone new is following you is like a mini ego-boost. You can also “like” any image to show your approval.

At least that’s how it should work. Unfortunately there are more than a few saddos who clearly follow everyone on the system (you can see a summary of the number of people someone is following against how many are following them at the top of their profile) in the hope that lots of people will follow them even though they might only have half a dozen images on their profile. Others leave pathetic messages against others’ images pleading for them to follow them, or saying “follow me and I’ll follow back”. All a bit sad and desperate really.

Also, I made the decision right at the beginning that this would be a forum for only my iphoneography and I wouldn’t, as many do, import images taken on my DSLR to disseminate via Instagram. While I can see why they might do this, it does rather defeat the object, in my view. Some pro photographers clearly use Instagram as a portal to showcase their DSLR work and they do make interesting and impressive viewing. However, I prefer to see images taken – if not on the Instagram app itself – then at least on a phonecam of some sort. I feel (and it’s just my opinion) that this is what Instagram is really best at.

There is a “Popular” page which is supposedly where the most popular images can be found. These tend to be HDR skyscapes/sunsets, pictures of pretty schoolgirls, kittens, shots of teenagers’ shoes, and the like. Not necessarily where you’ll find the best that Instagram has to offer, that’s for certain.

Some small comfort is that I am in good company with my addiction. Among the people I am following are Jamie Oliver, the chef and all-round talented geezer, who it turns out is a prolific producer of some great  IG images, as is his wife Jools, and David Loftus (Jamie’s photographer). Also worth a look is lumilyon (aka our very own Nettie Edwards) and the extremely original julioestrela (wonderfully manipulated images).

Anyway, can’t talk now – got some images to IG!