Abstract Photographic Art
Inspiration – to become inspired. Now there is a thought. Inspiration is very important for the creative mind to motivate one to do great things. For a writer, that challenge can be a tremendous hurdle to overcome. The same holds true for the photographer who must be inspired so his creativity flows freely from the thought process to the actual snap of the camera, to the composition or development of the final image. For me, I call it my mojo, or juju which ever. Don’t laugh. It works for me. Occasionally, it happens where it temporarily takes a holiday, and when it occurs I must procrastinate and find other means to occupy my mind until my mojo returns. At times this could take days, or so bad that I conduct a process of cleansing the bad juju out of my work space. Don’t laugh until you try it. It works.
In fact, I bumped this blog post three times. I wanted to share it a few weeks ago, but wasn’t comfortable with the images I chose. So over the last few days day of sifting through photo after photo, I believe I have chosen a selection that we have which best demonstrates Abstract Art or at least our interpretation of the Art.
Abstract has a plethora of definitions in an of itself, but for our specific purpose of photography as art, Abstract has but one meaning which pertains with the more formal aspect of art emphasizing lines, colors, generalized or geometrical forms, especially with reference to their relationship to one another. Well isn’t that a mouthful. Can’t we merely call it weird? No. Well we could, but why? Okay, some Abstracts Art is considered works of art while others admittedly are no more than a Kindergarteners finger painting project. What you will see today, hopefully will not be compared to a child’s art school project.
I know some of you are asking or at least want to know what makes a piece of art abstract? My first thought was anything that was not understandable, weird, far out, strange, and/or really? They call that art? Huh. My definitions, while simple – not remotely close. What does that mean? Well you know when you see a movie, or your at a gallery or somewhere where there is an obtuse, or bizarre image that people are checking out. They stare, they may walk around, this followed by the head turn and the hum, before generating an opinion. That is the type of abstract art some people still believe it continues. For those who have no idea of what abstract art entails, may I begin by saying the photo at the opening of this blog post, while beautiful, “On Golden and Sapphirine Pond”, is not abstract art. It is merely a beautiful photograph taken near sunset at a pond at Dawson Creek. Pysch!
On the more serious note, the image ‘Trees in Reflection’ below was shot at Dawson Creek. The photo depicts the reflection of a stand of birch trees in a pond.
‘Trees in Reflection,’ is the first of the abstract images we have for you. The image deliberatelwasy out of focus for those who might wonder. Basically, the camera settings, along with the angle and deliberated movement of the camera were used to arrive at this image. While, developing the image I did try to add some color and modify the image during development, but what happened was the original intent of the art was taken away. I changed the image back to the the original image snapped; the image depicts the reflection in the water including the grass, trees, and skyline. When the colors were added, the feel of the image changed dramatically altering the meaning of the image to something I did not like. I scrapped that image and chose the one below which had not been altered because it best conveyed the story, of the three trees in reflection. Sometimes less is better. Like below.
The three images which, Lloyd proudly shot, (One Stone, Two Stones, and Post in Pond), can be construed as abstract or merely nature at its simplest or it most complex form, depending on how you the observer visualizes the images. We all know that nature is anything but simple. When one looks at ‘One Stone,’ the thought maybe wow, its a stone and he took a photo of that? What was he thinking? Well, I often wonder what he was thinking. Kidding. He was looking at the lines, the colors, the beauty of what the stone brings to the frame, and how these thoughts would convey to print.
Lloyd may have different opinions on the subject, but since this is my blog, I will attempt to interpret how he came to his conclusions for the images, and what his thoughts were.
In all likelihood he simply believed his images were cool. However, with that being said, every image he focuses on from positioning himself, to placing the object or himself in proper locale, prior to the image to developing of the final product is calculated. This formula if you will, is largely, I believe a result of his engineering background. What I also find interesting, is that he is an engineer, but one of few who can and does think out side the box. This is what makes him a fabulous photographer, and me a mediocre one at best.
Using Lloyd’s three two photos, titled ‘One Stone’ and ‘Two Stones’, above, and like ‘Post in Pond,’. These images are all unique, trendy, and are considered Abstract. I find them very good. Interesting and in no means pretentious, boring, grandiose, obtuse, or bizarre etc. they are works of art and very pleasing to ones eye.
If you like his images, you like Abstract Art, at least his anyway. There are meanings associated with each, but I am not about to convey Lloyd’s vision. You will have to ask him about that. In the third image, I see is a post protruding through blue water which makes one think, which end is up, or how deep the water is, reasoning which has an answer. That is rest is up to you to decide.The next images were shot by me. Some of them are absolutely without a doubt abstract. Some can go either way. It depends on your definition of Abstract, if it is the same as mine.
Reflections in the wake of the Moon was taken during the daylight sun, however, in this image it is in black and white for the effect that it was taken by the light of the moon, an the trees, thus cast their reflection under the moon. This image can be either Abstract or not, depending what definition you follow.
I never used to be a fan of abstract art in any form. Then I asked myself why? Because it is weird? So far out there? the fact was I didn’t understand it. What is to understand in art? Well, for Abstract Art, there is an Art to understanding it. Hey I am kind of weird and out there sometimes. I have friends, many understand me, many don’t. Same thing.
There are a large number of individuals who dislike Abstract forms of art, My guess would be they deemed it as indistinguishable, strange, or really out there. In part they have a point, but truthfully it is more profound than that. I believe it is more they would rather have the story told for them as such easily visible, and easily understood. I probably to some degree feel that way as we as well, but at times I like a puzzle therefore Abstract art is fun. It makes our brains think. And God that is such a horrible task. Admittedly, many won’t like or appreciate many of the photos here, but at the very least hold your reservations until you have read the entire blog.
‘Reflection of a Sunset’ is the reflection of trees over the water and the redness from the sun as it nearly erupted in the pond.
The following image you may recognize from last week, but it represents another side of Abstract Art, the softer side of the subject, where you see the images enough of an image your brain fills in the remainder into an image, from there tells the story. In other words the mind doesn’t have to work as hard to figure out what one is seeing.
Abstract anything is of something different is hard for many people to accept. Even if one has little to no idea of what in our case, abstract art entails; still others may never have laid eyes on this type of artistic genre, or they associate the name with the bizarre art forms that are indeed out there and run away fast. I believe that any strange bizarre form of art is what drives people away, and because of those images they associate to abstract which, they refuse to see through to the beauty on the other side. Okay, some doesn’t have any beauty, but hopefully, you are at least showing an appreciation of mine. ‘Purple Silk’ is one of my water images that took from the skies the purple hues and such were brought out in the image.
Some of the image you see in this blog are on our web page others are not (if you are interested in purchasing an image that you see here which is not on our website, please shoot me and email and I will take care of you), very from mildly abstract (in a good way) to moderately Abstract, we definitely do not specialize in the far out Abstract images, I merely like to shoot images in the abstract only when I am in the mood for it. I found an infinity for this genre of art form while merely capturing images in the outdoors before I clicked the camera.
Okay, now that I have slowly brought you into the world of Abstract Art. ‘Autumn Rose’ reminds me of Autumn colors at the end of summer as the petals and leaves land on the ground, the leaves transform into and the many shades of roses, the petal which have fallen and the leaves which have joined them on the ground. Simple. You may hate it and not see anything of the sort, except for maybe the nice shades of rose. That is okay.
I hate to throw age into the equation, but it believe that as one grows older the more tolerant one becomes and less serious. When I began to get serious with a camera, learned how it operated and what amazing images could be produced by merely touching the dial one way or the other, it was purely fascinating what I saw through the eye of a camera lens.
Then I discovered I had a certain knack for Abstract Art. The photo above was taken on purpose with a purpose, nothing fancy. I suppose one could argue that the image should be titled purple and yellow drapery, instead of Golden Waves of Amethyst. Then it wouldn’t be abstract. No, I did not take a picture of curtains. Mind you, at the time I didn’t say, wow this is going to a cool drapery, but hey if that’s what it looks like to you who am I to question? The photo was taken with intent. The intent not immediately recognized until I said hey wonder what would happen if I did this and that, and viola, Golden Waves of Amethyst was born. And then I said, wow that looks like a drapery, who knew? The photo actually is the landscape next to some trees and minute water feature on a pond.
Abstract art can be extraordinarily beautiful like ‘Ripples in the Pond’ which is actually the pond and the reflection of the trees in the water and the way the sun shone down on the pond at sunset. The ripples were caused by a couple of ducks. If you allow your mind to wander and not try to figure out ‘what the artists vision was when producing it that may help you in wonder what the artist’s intent was at the time they snapped the camera.
I think most people get stuck there. There being how does one describe the piece. Well with photography, it is easier than some other forms of . On that note, I would agree, only the artist can really appreciate his own work, because they have the knowledge of what they were trying to convey in the first place, we merely get the pleasure of enjoying it after the fact. I will admit, I look at some of the photos you will see in this blog and each time I look at them I see the image in a different light than you may never see or understand. That is okay. Not everyone is going to like it, some will, or at the very least have an appreciation for it, even if they don’t understand it or like it.
This image titled ‘Twisted Ripples’ was shot at Dawson Creek in August of this year. This image along with next one ‘Chaos’ were purchased within minutes of putting the images up at the gallery showing last October (Prints and matted originals are still available for both images, and can be framed as well).
This next image is probably my favorite photo that I have taken. I believe that the artist named this Family Tree, regardless for me, my rendition of the image takes on an entirely new meaning for me because I shot the image (with Lauren Hope’s LHB Jewelry permission).
Tree Fairies and Chaos are perhaps two of my most favorite images I shot this summer. When I first observed the necklace that was Tree of Life, I saw something completely different through the eye of the camera. To me the image spoke ‘Tree Fairies’, which ultimately would become this image. I was immediately drawn the second I laid my eyes on the subject, for one reason it was different and second, it would photograph well. I believe I was right.
So how are we doing so far? The image above was remarkable in that it merely popped out like the sun from behind a cloud. I saw it, then snapped excited like a school kid, and out popped this mirror image of trees and Lilly pads. The timing couldn’t have been better if I had planned it myself. I have seen others try to copy this very image after seeing my version, they failed. Why? One reason, because they were merely trying to copy me; second, they weren’t at the same location at the same time, with the same light, as I was, and third, the feeling or mood was not present. I understand the desire to copy techniques, but you certainly don’t publish your blunders to the world to critique. As you have no right, the worse part of this was the artist, for which I use lightly, did not give credit where credit was due. You must have the mood to amalgamate with the other aspects of the image, along with the correct setting in order for your photo to work. Abstract or otherwise. Lesson here – don’t copy someone’s work if you do, then give the person credit, that you tried your technique and it failed, but here is my try. I don’t know. Granted we all use others ideas about everything we do in life, I guess what I am trying to say is this is more about plagiarism. And let’s leave it at that.
This image ‘Circular Trail’ I am rather proud of, as I was taught how to achieve this effect, which most photographers are not capable of doing. I , when told this by a seasoned photographer. I am not afraid to say it took me a few times to figure it out. I love doing it especially if I want to place emphasis on an object like the grapes below. It is not easy, even for me sometimes it doesn’t work. It is about your relationship you develop with your camera. You must have the correct light, correct settings for the conditions, the feeling you gain from seeing the photo opportunity, and all of the components need to coalesce simultaneously at precisely, the right moment.
The ‘Kaleidoscope of Grapes’ above was shot at Patton Valley Winery this past autumn, I wanted to capitalize on the bundle of grapes in the center of the photograph and so I thought it would be fun to do so, by perfectly capturing their image in the center of the circular kaleidoscope. I found an infinity for the art while merely capturing an image in the outdoors.
Okay for a little check in to see how we are doing? Have I lost anyone I hope not we are nearly at the end. None of the photos thus far have been too bizarre right? At least in my opinion. Some of my choices, I agree are very abstract while others are merely plain fun, i.e, the shot of grapes.
This image of the wine rack was shot at Willakenzie winery. It reminded me of the days when making fun of people drinking was funny on TV and when the screen would move mimicking what the actor was seeing at the time. Fun.
The images so far are abstract or merely nature at its simplest. But we all know that nature is anything but simple. When one looks at One Stone, the thought maybe wow, its a stone and he took a photo of that? What was he thinking. Well, he was looking at the lines the colors, the beauty of what the stone was and would convey.
I find abstract fun in that if you watch people look at the object regardless of whether or not it is extremely weird or strange, you see people turn their head to the right, then the left, the say “Hey they call this art? I could have done this, or my four-year old grandson could have painted that, and maybe better. Hum.
Go figure.” It was like, if one could throw some paint spatter on the wall and call it art, we too would be rich. I suppose it matters who threw the splatter. If you were already some famous artist, then you would be more likely to would like gain the attention, before a no name in the business would.
That about wraps up the lesson behind Abstract art, in the most simplistic form, of course. If you can’t figure out what the object is or what it is supposed to be, then you have figured it out. Where they come up with the names or deep meanings is beyond me. Here are a compilation of some of the images I photographed recently. I hope that you enjoy them.
With that being said, Abstract photography is essentially the same as abstract painting, it can be very bizarre to slightly obscure, or interesting as one analyzes it. Why spend the time trying to figure it out. It could be similar to putting together a puzzle. I like abstract art. Because you can make it mean what ever your mood feels like at the time.
This image is water flowing through the stream. The image below was taken as Lloyd pushed Delores and Me across the bridge. The bridge is made out of wood so the ride was less than smooth. But, the image captured from that experience turned out to be ‘Ghost Bridge’. Very cool.
Not all abstract art is terrible, some is, but as I have found that the older I get, (Yikes the ‘old’ word) I become more intrigued with abstract photography, but will admit I do not particularly understand the strange body posing or nudes that are suppose to be artistic. I admit I don’t get those and I personally don’t believe it is art.
I sometimes have to look at some abstract images and think with my ‘inside voice‘ because I often wonder what they artist was thinking when he thought his piece was art, or in the case of artistic photography, the same can be said, what were they thinking when they put that photo together?
For me, this work is artistry, because it takes a lot of thought up front before the photo is shot and more thought when developing the image. Sometimes the image screams the answer, it is merely up to the artist to develop the image from there. My perspective of this type of photography is that the story is there you merely need to find it. That is part of why people like this form of artistry, they have a message they wish to convey, yet their stories are on print as a riddle or a puzzle and it is up to us to determine what the story is.
Art is simple. People are complex. When they meld the two, many people don’t like to think much when they look at art. They want the story clearly present when they look at their piece of art. Don’t blame them, nothing wrong with that. I love riddles and puzzles so I love to look at abstract art and try to figure out what the artist was trying to convey. I hope you like what you have seen in this long blog. Sorry I got a bit carried away with the number of photos. I won’t be offended if you don’t like any, but one should always be willing to broaden ones horizon, and thus their mind. Enjoy!
Geese to Flight was interesting. One of my new favorites! Remember how I say I never can capture objects that move. Here is my rendition of Geese to Flight as the geese in the hundreds instantly took to flight. I decided to produce this as an abstract because the shapes were clearly present and one can visualize the images of the geese. The sky was a pinkish red sky in which I did manipulate the colors a bit to make the image an abstract piece of art.
Fire on the Water is a reflection of trees at sunset at Dawson Creek. The image was not modified from its original color.
Paper Leaves is perhaps one of my newest favorites. This image depicts the last of the alder leaves which had fallen over and in the first glint of snow/icy fog. This image was not altered from that which was taken.
Red Basket of leaves this image depicts the various colors of autumn leaves and after looking at the image during development looked somewhat like a red basket. This image was not modified from its original colors.
While, this image is a bit iffy as to whether or not it is abstract, it mildly is. The image reflects the ‘Last of the Red Leaves of Autumn’, which were piled up on the ground. The colors were stunning Fire Red. The colors were not manipulated to create this effect. The image was this, as is.
Pink Violet was taken at sunset as the sky turned a glorious color of amber, violet and pink. It was wonderful and the reflection this had as the back drop to stands of birch and poplars.
Most on a tree is abstract because of the way in which it is presented in a square-like vignette around the moss. If the vignette was absent, the moss would be in all likelihood, moss.
Path to Paradise I love this path to paradise as this is what I image when I take that long walk when the man in black comes. I hope he will give me a little more time, as I am not quite finished with what I have wanted to finish. Let’s see if he listens.
Heaven on Earth Cloud Stream is the final image. I often find myself daydreaming and looking to the heavens for no real reason. But truth I wonder is this is were we go. I realize this thought is a bit morbid. But once in a while, you do and you see clouds, perhaps like these or some other unique formation. I like to snap photos of the heavens. I probably have enough images in my portfolio to do a blog. Maybe one of these days.
So knowing that you have had a small introduction into Abstract art that is mild in comparison to other types, do you find you still do not like it? Or have you managed to at least find an appreciation for the art? Or perhaps you have found a favorite. Which ever category you chose, you are one step closer toward knowing that not all abstract art is horrible, I hope.