Rainy days tend to keep most people from carrying around their cameras which is understandable. Who wants to risk damaging such an expensive piece of equipment? But how many of you have seen something on your trip to work or walk to lunch and thought “if only I had my camera with me?” Sometimes it pays to bring it along for the ride as købiā found out one rainy day last week.
Instead of focusing on the person, the rain itself is the subject and the low angle gives a different perspective all together. Was this taken from the ground? Looking up onto a walkway? And the photo has a nice dreamy quality to it – one that makes you want to go home, sit on the couch, and listen to the rain fall against the window. Maybe take a nap. Yeah, definitely take a nap.
Such a wonderful abstract photo from puddlegal9 of the Hirshhorn courtyard. Take a moment to look at the shot; you’ll quickly see all the wonderful lines going every which way. In addition to the straight lines, there are a number of curved circles and other shapes which contribute to the pleasing sight. But the part that fascinates me the most is the appearance that the photograph is a flat surface, when, in fact, the Hirshhorn is round; this effect was achieved through smart composition. Truly, a great photo.
A constant request I get from my friends is to “teach me to take photos like you do.” I find I have to stop myself from responding like George Costanza: “That’s like asking Picasso to teach me to paint like you paint.” The arrogance of the statement is only half of the issue; the other half is that it’s very hard to explain how someone visualizes a photograph. Many times I don’t even know what has drawn my eye to take the picture until I sort through my photos later.
Abstract photos are particularly difficult to explain. Take Erin’s photo above, a great abstract photo. What drew her eye to take this photo? If it was the peeling paint, she could have cropped it more like this. Was it the contrasting colors in the scene; the dull tones of the paint, with the muted reflected colors? It’s easy to say it was all of the above, but it could have been the shape of the window. Or perhaps even something I am missing. How does what explain finding and taking this picture?
And if the aim was to get something abstract, there are many types that could work; ceilings, portions of railings, shadows on sidewalks, even reflections of signs.
The ultimate answer is you shoot what catches your eye. It’s a carefully cultivated talent, that is unique to each person. I, or any photographer, could no more teach this skill than Picasso teach us to paint like he does. Each person just has to go out there and take photos the way they take photos.
courtesy of ekelly80
Sometimes you should look down; it can be just as important as looking up. To demonstrate, Erin does a great job of catching this small piece of the sidewalk. We’d probably just pass by the sight, and miss how the petals fill in the sections of the manhole, making the lines very distinct. With the petals fanning out like a solar wind, it really does look like a sidewalk sun. Of course, the filter used gives the picture a nice, pleasant, golden hue. An excellent shot however you look at it.
Photog in the reflection
courtesy of yostinator
A little bit of mystery for the day. A self portrait is just what it sounds like, a photo of the photographer taken by the photographer. Some people find this type of photography to be empty or egotistical. Others (like myself) think that, when done well, it can give you an amazing insight into the person taking the photograph. Like any other portrait photo it can convey an amazing amount of emotion. Now yostinator SP above isn’t a full on self portrait, but it still does a great job of capturing the mystery of the scene. We’ve all had moments where we catch our reflection in a window or a mirror and, if the light is just right, get intrigued by what is looking back at us. Yostinator catches her hand’s reflection, along with that of her camera, and along the way gets some beautiful colors and bokeh in the background, all while waiting for a Metro train. This could just as easily been an abstract painting, rather than a self portrait.
Josef Albers, “Homage to the Square: Glow,” (1966). From the Hirshhorn’s collection.
“We must teach each other… education is not first giving answers but giving questions.” – Josef Albers
Abstract art is void of narrative. The composition often speaks only through the viewers mind. A type of understanding through speculation, providing the sort of simple canvas that the imagination needs in order to thrive.
Josef Albers (1888-1976) was a master of the subjective canvas, an explorer of color and an ambassador for the abstract form.
Black Door with Red, 1954. Oil on Canvas, 48 x 48 in. Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia. Bequest of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. 89.63 (CR1271). Copyright, Georgia O’Keeffe Museum/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.
“Objective painting is not good painting unless it is good in the abstract sense.” – Georgia O’Keeffe, 1976
When discussing abstract art of the 20th-century, the likes of Kandinsky and Matisse are often the works that most easily come to mind. However, the newest exhibition at The Phillips Collection – Georgia O’Keeffe: Abstraction – suggests the need for a potential addition among the abstract ‘authority’.