Ginger Lucero: Complexity, Thy Name Is Woman By Mansi Bhatia
Ginger Lucero, an experimental iPhone artist who doesn’t believe that plaids and patterns can’t mix. Before you wrinkle your nose, give it a shot. She exemplifies the beauty of iPhoneography – that there are no boundaries and you can make your own rules.
Ginger has long amazed me with her ability to mix apps and effects that I wouldn’t even dream of combining. Her dexterity in stretching the boundaries and pushing the envelope keep me mesmerized. Known as @sxethang in the iPhoneography world, she sure has brought the sexy into iPhone art – where sexy not only means seductive and sultry, but also something that’s alluring, innovative, noveau, with just a hint of mischief.
M: Mansi G: Ginger
M: What’s the story behind your handle/username “sxethang?”
G: It started 15 years ago when my hubby was working for AOL. I made the name to “flirt” with him, but was busted when he looked up the account. Cheater!!
M: Which three adjectives would you choose to describe yourself?
G: Passionate, for things I believe in.
Impatient, I’m a “now” kind of gal.
Picky, I like things done a certain way, and will keep doing what I need to, to make sure it’s done to my satisfaction.
M: What got you interested in iPhoneography?
G: I’ve always been an app junky. I used to be very big into gaming apps, and joined a forum made for iPhone gaming. It was in that forum that I met someone that turned me on to Hipstamatic. After that I was hooked.
M: Do you have any training in film or “conventional” digital photography?
G: I don’t have any training at all, but hope to get into Digital Arts and Photography in the near future.
M: How much time do you spend on your iPhoneography?
G: It varies. Usually between 2 to 7 hours daily. My hubby usually has to pull me away and forces me to take breaks. I guess you can say I’m a bit fixated.
M: How many apps do you have in your arsenal — any favorites?
G: Moment of truth, 215. My favorites are Decim8, to mix things up; Photowizard, I love their masking tool; 6×6; Super Retro; Camera+ for shooting; Imageblender for blending; and ScratchCam to scratch or dirty things up.
Envisage, created with Decim8
M: How often do you install new apps and delete others?
G: I would have to say daily to every other day. I have an endless wish list. As for deleting, I will delete something if the apps resolution is low, or I find that I haven’t used it in a few months, I have to make room for others.
M: I often discover new apps thanks to your Instagram feed – how do you stay on top of new apps being launched every day?
G: One of my favorite places to stay on top of apps is Appshopper. I’ve used that site since apps were available. It’s a great site that keeps you informed of updates, new apps, and sales. You can also create an account to help you keep track of your apps and create a wish list. My wish list is never empty.
Verbal Abuse, created with Camera+
M: What do you enjoy most about iPhoneography? Anything you find particularly challenging?
G: I enjoy being able to get lost in the manipulation of a photo, seeing it take form before my eyes and the creation that comes out of me. It’s a great form of stress relief as well. I think I’m my own worst critic and that challenges me.
R. E. M., created with Scratchcam
M: Where do you find inspiration?
G: I find inspiration in everyday things, a tree, the sky… simple things. But I also find inspiration in other iPhoneographers. It’s hard to see someone else’s art and NOT feel inspired. There are so many great artists.
Love is Blind, created with PhotoWizard and ImageBlender
M: Do you make a distinction between iPhoneographers and iPhone artists?
G: I think iPhoneographers tend to have a very clean, unfiltered look if you will. While iPhone artists seem to be more into the manipulation of their work, putting their own twist and spin into their photos.
M: What do you do to get out of creative blocks?
G: If I find that I’ve reached a creative block, I try to give myself a break. Sometimes messing with a photo can help, or looking at pieces I have done can help spark an idea.
The Door, created with 6X6
M: Most of your images are heavily apped – why choose that kind of iPhone artistry over posting “nekkid” images?
G: I do enjoy a clean image, just not my own. I feel that if I leave the photo alone, I haven’t really contributed anything. I guess you can say I’m an extremist!
On a Night Like This, created with Decim8
M: Would you say you have a “signature sxethang style?” Any examples?
G: You know, I think it’s hard to see my own style as a “style.” But if I had to pick, I would say In Search of Obedience, or Wicked Love. But again, that’s a tough one.
In Search of Obedience, created with PhotoWizard
M: What’s your favorite subject to photograph? Why?
G: I like trees, and skies for the simple reason that, they always seem to be changing. Selfies are also fun. They allow me to show myself in a way that I never thought I would, which has actually made me more comfortable with who I am as a person.
M: Could you choose one of your favorite pieces from the last six months and share the process of creating it with us?
G: One of my favorites is Erase My Mind
1. Shot with Lomora3 on double exposure
2. Decim8 to mix things up.
3. ScratchCam and Modern Grunge to give texture.
4. Last I put the original Decim8 and the textured photo into Imageblender to keep the greenish color.
M: You’re a relatively new Instagrammer: How are you liking the IG community thus far? On a related note, how do the various iPhoneography social sharing communities compare? Do you like some more than others? Why?
G: The Instagram community has been great, which is why I regret not starting it sooner. I love being able to see what someone has just posted. I don’t know if I would say that I like some more than others, as they all seem to have their own benefits. I like Flickr because that’s where I started, so I guess you can say that will always be home. I also like iPhoneart. Everyone there is so friendly and knowledgeable, and more than happy to help in any way. It’s a great be part of a community with so many talented and inspiring artists.
M: You’ve had some great success with your images being featured in LifeinLoFi and most recently you were also made the Artist of the Day on iPhoneart – would you say, you’ve arrived?
G: Thank you. I’m always trying to push myself to the limits of what I think I can do, so I don’t think I’ve arrived just yet, but by the recent recognition; I certainly think I’m going in the right direction.
Seclusion, created with SuperRetro and Scratchcam
M: Any advice for budding iPhoneographers and iPhone artists?
G: Experiment, experiment, experiment. I remember when I started, I had a disagreement with someone. They said my photos were apped to death and honestly my feelings were hurt. I almost quit altogether. But I realized that not everyone will be happy with the kind of work I produce, and I no longer try to please others, only myself. So be true to yourself, do what makes you happy, and don’t ever let anyone tell you that you’re doing things wrong!!
IG: @sxethang Twitter: @sxethang
Juxt thanks you for your words and your art!
About Mansi B.
San Jose, CA
I’m usually described as a writer, iPhoneographer and nitpicker, the order varying upon the individual you ask. I believe iPhone photography is all about experimentation and letting go … it’s the amazing feeling of liberation. There’s no material to waste — no canvas, paint, film roll. Just your wild imagination. I love trying different app combinations and going places I’ve never been. The Instagram and iPhoneart communities inspire me daily and every time I see some phenomenal artwork done on the iPhone, it encourages me to try something new. Creating art on the iPhone is a journey … the destination might not always be in sight, but it’s the experience of creating something spectacular from something simple that’s most rewarding.