Tuesday, September 17, 2013

What makes a photograph an abstract?

I've been questioning what makes a macro/close up photo an abstract.
After shooting a "study" of our air conditioner,
and posting one of those shots (here) to various sites/blogs, someone
commented that my shot made a cool "abstract".
This got me to wondering what the definition for 
a macro abstract would be.
I thought my shots were "just" close ups alone...
 Clive Branson defines abstracts this way ~ "Some kinds of macro photography can be considered as abstract. The end result can still be recognizable, but taken in such a way that it is unique to the viewer’s perception. Flowers, plant life, anything colorful or provides reflection will make great abstract subjects. With macro photography, the aim is to crop tightly using the whole frame, emphasizing color, texture or pattern."  (Here, great article.)
 Looking at this gallery of abstract photography
helped me immensely! 
 I also liked this video interview with Kathy Nichols on YouTube here,
her abstracts are outstanding! Love her work!
So if you're interested in researching more on this subject ~
 Ron Bigalow offers more in depth articles
here (Part 1) and here (Part 2) on Abstract Photography.
Maybe it's in the eye of the beholder,
as, I'm still not sold on calling these shots abstracts...
What is your opinion?
Happy Click'n!


  1. thanks for the photoargus site, I have saved it for future use. last week i saw a lesson on Abrsact and wrote down the 4 tips for it... and now i have photos to inspire me on Photoargus.
    1. has visual appeal
    2. based on photographers eye
    3. not usually seen this way
    4. look for details, patterns, lines, the form, shape and colors.. this came off a lesson but i can remember where.

  2. I'm still not sure what is an abstract and what isn't, LOL. But I like your macro shots, particularly the last one!


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