Maia on the plane, and Sophia, returning home from our presentation at the Apple Store in NYC.

People who’ve been around P1xels for a while know who Maia is. She was instrumental in the creation of P1xels and the birth of the iphonic art movement, to tell the truth. Well, my cat Baby had a lot to do with it, as well.

Maia was both inspiration and hard-working contributor to P1xels three years ago when we launched the site. It was her early, beautiful pictures, using just ToyCamera & BestCam (apps have come a long way since then!), that convinced me we were dealing with a bona fide new art form in iphonic art, which led to the first show at the Giorgi Gallery, the creation of this website, and the first call for submissions.

Maia helped me in the early days of curation constantly. She has an amazing eye. She also helped print and hang shows, helped cover expenses, and was a great sounding board as the site rapidly evolved along with the community and the art itself.

Beyond that, her work, which can be seen here, exists in its own special place in the realm of iphonic art. She, more than any other artist I know, approached every picture as a painter would. Every pixel counted. She would spend a week on one image. She was a huge inspiration to me as I approached my own work. I know she inspired many other people to work a lot harder on their pictures.

When Flipboard needed a button for P1xels when they first featured us, the picked one of Maia’s images out of twelve thousand – I had no input in that. Every time a story is written about P1xels, one of Maia’s works is featured. Her focus, her craft, and, dare I say it, her love for her subjects, radiates from her pictures, resonating with people on visceral level. Her work ranges from the sublime to the strange, but every picture is unmistakably Maia.

So I am very happy to announce that Maia will be assisting in the judging of THE THIRD WAVE.