Sion Fullana worked as a journalist in his native Spain and studied filmmaking in Cuba before becoming serious about photography shortly after the second-generation iPhone, the 3G, was released in 2008. He shot prolifically, posted his images to Flickr (and later to hubs like EyeEm and Instagram, where he attracted north of 70,000 followers), won acclaim in international exhibitions, and soon emerged as one the most active and vocal members of the growing mobile photography community.
Today, Fullana is one of that community’s acknowledged masters and his work deserves credit for helping mobile photography shed its novelty status and gain widespread acceptance among “big camera” photographers, photo editors, and art directors.
Fullana himself has shot commercial assignments for Macy’s, Tory Burch, Beefeater, HP, and other clients; however, he remains, at heart, a street photographer straight out of the Cartier-Bresson tradition.
Like the best street photographers, Fullana is flaneur, artist, and cultural anthropologist rolled into one. He prefers to think of himself as “an invisible witness”—that invisibility made possible by the combination of the iPhone’s form factor and the idiosyncratic technique he uses to make pictures.
One senses in Fullana’s work the critical detachment of the journalist, but also the wonderment of someone for whom New York is still new. This balance, along with Fullana’s knack for capturing the most fleeting expression or gesture and small but somehow significant transactions, is what makes his images so arresting.
stated shadowed Fullana as he photographed in some of his favorite New York locales, and he sat down with us in the stated offices to discuss his work, how he approaches making pictures on the streets of New York, what the future holds for mobile photography, and more. We hope you enjoy our portrait of this gifted photographer.
- Thomas V. Hartmann, Photography Editor & Contributor