"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up." ~ Pablo Picasso

 

Abstract photography

It was not until the 20th Century that photography began to be accepted as fine art. Early art photography attempted to copy the painting styles of the times, using soft focus and other techniques to create a dreamy look and a romantic aesthetic. In direct reaction to this "pictorialist" art movement, photographers such as the famous Ansel Adams took photographs that were in sharp focus and not in any way an imitation of any other art form, but pure photography in their own right.

Photography as art has always been controversial, as there is no agreement by the public on what art really is. By contrast, another view of art is that art is the choice of what to show, which applies to photography just as easily as painting.

Fine art defined as a method (which it is to many practicing artists, while this is little understood by either the public or art promoters) can certainly be applied to photography. The fine art method consists of repetitively focusing on a particular aspect of an artwork in comparison with the objective world, thus resulting in an artwork which would not have been imagined at the start of the process. The fine art method is an exploration beyond the surface of both the visual world and of the artist themselves, and can be a profound and addictive experience in practice.

The art movement of "conceptual photography" is abstract in that what is important is the concept or idea, not the fact that what is depicted is a real object. In contrast to this, the general public will typically label a photograph "abstract" if the subject is not easily recognizable. As well as photography itself, digital manipulation of photographs (or other images) opens up the possibility of the artist abstracting the image due to the manipulations used rather than the original image. Abstract art can be defined as art where the relation to objective reality is distorted or hidden, and with digital image manipulation such distortions are technically possible.

A quick look on the internet reveals a wide variety of fascinating abstract photography, using all subjects, techniques and styles. In many abstract photographs, the subject is obvious, yet it is equally obvious that the photograph is about the abstract elements rather than the objective subject that was used.

Abstract photography is obviously popular today with large numbers of abstract photos being easy to find on the internet, with some superb abstract photography being available as posters. Some photographic and image-transformation techniques such as reflection, distortion, focus, X-ray, and blending can make any image into an abstract, yet the artist still has the choice of what the finished piece will look like, which is what viewers will be affected by.

Abstract photography is a significant are of the art world today, as well as being popular with the public.



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