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Author Topic: Show us some Abstracts!  (Read 621466 times)

John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1360 on: July 28, 2016, 04:12:20 am »

I did simplify the background to render the arch shape more dominant, yet simpler.

JR

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GrahamBy

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1361 on: July 28, 2016, 07:00:08 am »

A question: I really don't put much weight on labels, so it's not meant to be a challenge or attack... but what do the various readers of this thread consider to be "abstract"?

-I'd certainly put Rob C's blobs and streaks of colour in that category, even if I can work out that at some point a car tail-light was involved.

-Reflections in water can so break up the original image that it becomes an unidentifiable colour collage, or a just-slightly distorted reflection, or somewhere in between. For you personally, how far along that scale does the image remain abstract?

-John R's image above could be taken as a classical piece of architectural photography. We all know it's a stair case, all the details are present and undistorted. However they also have compositional arrangement that would allow them to still form an interesting image if one hit one's head hard enough to forget about the existence of staircases. Is that sufficient?

-Would the same be true of, for eg, one of Bill Brandt's nudes?
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Rob C

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1362 on: July 28, 2016, 09:11:57 am »

Graham,

For me, it has to be something that's not obviously/instantly identifiable; the more difficult to interpret the better.

I was originally put into the way of this stuff years ago, looking at Keith's found artwork:

http://www.keithlaban.com/foundpaintings.html

and also from looking at this fellow's work:

http://www.peterdefty.com/Site/ABSTRACTS.html

If you just do close-ups of details that are clearly representational, then that's something else.

I brought this up some time ago, and suggested a lot of material currently filed here under Abstracts is really Graphics, but apparently people didn't want to discern differences. That's up to them; I simply think it's careless, and does the site no favours, not least of all because it confuses newer photographers interested in understanding genre.

Rob

GrahamBy

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1363 on: July 28, 2016, 10:57:07 am »

On the found image/failing paint/rust theme, you might also want to look at Tom O Scott's work:

https://500px.com/tomoscott

It's not as sustained, and it's mixed up with some B&W seal portraits and so on, but there is nice work...

Of course in many cases you can identify that it's a rusty piece of steel with paint falling off. The critical factor seems to be that its real life identity has no relationship to its aesthetic value: an architect might give some thought to the appearance of his stairs, but I doubt a commercial ship-builder gives a thought to the eventual decay of painted metal work... other than trying to avoid it. I guess the same is true of eg Lucien Clergue's shot of patchwork repairs on an American road.


Then what if they are naturally occurring, like Scott's birefringence patterns in oily water... is it a miniature landscape? In fact, there is a gallery full of Clergue images that could be called "abstracts" classified under "landscapes":

http://www.anneclergue.com/lucien-clergue-portfolio-paysages

All good mind-broadening stuff, anyway.
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Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1364 on: July 28, 2016, 12:00:43 pm »

How about if the thread were called Abstracts and Patterns, or Abstracts and Such;)
The looser "definition" might fit the kinds of images that members like to post here, without eliciting confusion or consternation in some.
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1365 on: July 28, 2016, 12:41:31 pm »

Actually, on my own web site, I use this menu title: Graphics & Abstracts. Covers all, overlaps and gray areas too.

John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1366 on: July 28, 2016, 01:02:47 pm »

Some interesting work on those sites. Thanks for the links guys. I think the original intent was to create a thread for abstract, or semi abstract, or unusual hard-to-classify images, free from critique, and that was inclusive. Don't misconstrue, I do like and appreciate the comments. But I am just looking to share my work and see other people's work. Arlen's idea of Abstracts and Patterns sounds like a good idea to me, but it's all water under the bridge now. I do like Grahamby's point that although one can easily recognize some subjects, or parts thereof, many images have an abstract quality because they focus on shapes, colours or implied motion, or some other quality that is not easy to categorize.

So you want pure abstracts, take this  ;)





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John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1367 on: July 28, 2016, 01:07:32 pm »

Or how about on-the-border, minimalism combined with abstraction?

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Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1368 on: July 28, 2016, 02:30:02 pm »

I'll echo John's thanks for those links, Rob and Graham. I had seen Keith Laban's work, but not the others. Rob, to me some of the abstracts that you've posted here rank right up there with those.
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Rob C

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1369 on: July 28, 2016, 02:50:20 pm »

I'll echo John's thanks for those links, Rob and Graham. I had seen Keith Laban's work, but not the others. Rob, to me some of the abstracts that you've posted here rank right up there with those.


Why thank you, Arlen, I'm glad you found some enjoyable! It's quite interesting to do them - partly because I'm never really sure how they are going to turn out, even though I obviously have an educated guess at where I want to go. It's a little like waiting for the Kodachromes to come back! The basic file is always pretty flat, so then it's a new departure yet again from what I was actually dealing with in the first instance. Best thing is, no people involved to have as a 'standard' for comparison, so anything goes.

Thanks again,

Rob

Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1370 on: July 28, 2016, 06:42:05 pm »

I think I know just what you mean, Rob. I feel pretty much the same way about extreme close-up abstracts that I do from time to time. It's really hard to tell exactly what I got from viewing the camera screen, so I'm often anxious to get them on the computer to take a good look. Most go in the trash, but a few nuggets pop up now and then.
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Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1371 on: July 28, 2016, 11:04:01 pm »

This one's from a few days ago.



     
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John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1372 on: July 29, 2016, 05:41:43 am »

Excellent Arlen. It somehow invites you in to explore the mystery. Did you use extension tubes?

JR
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Rob C

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1373 on: July 29, 2016, 11:23:35 am »

Excellent Arlen. It somehow invites you in to explore the mystery. Did you use extension tubes?

JR


Nah, silk sheets come more to mind, but YMMD.

;-)

Rob

Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1374 on: July 29, 2016, 11:59:50 am »

 ;D

They're kind of like clouds, what you see in them reflects the mind of the beholder.

John, it was just my Olympus macro lens at closest focus, 1:1; and a slight crop for the sake of composition.
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John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1375 on: July 29, 2016, 06:39:51 pm »

When I played around with the colour slider on this one, it started to look like the flames from hell, so I left the it alone. More pastel-like.

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GrahamBy

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1376 on: July 30, 2016, 01:48:02 pm »

More graphic then abstract, then...
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Arlen

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1377 on: July 30, 2016, 03:42:42 pm »

When I played around with the colour slider on this one, it started to look like the flames from hell, so I left the it alone. More pastel-like.

Flames from hell might be exciting, but I think it looks very good as is. Pastel seems to fit these kinds of images quite well.

Graham, nice catch. But realize that when you delve into pavement, you are playing on Eric M.'s turf.  :)
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John R

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1378 on: July 30, 2016, 05:20:57 pm »

I shot this at an oblique angle and despite using f16 or f22, I was not able to get the whole subject in focus. Thus part of my nebulous image is as is as soft as my understanding of the universe.

JR

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Tim Lookingbill

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Re: Show us some Abstracts!
« Reply #1379 on: July 30, 2016, 06:06:48 pm »

From the length of this thread it appears abstracts are more popular than I thought. Some really nice work here.

I find hunting for them with a wondering eye as much fun as making them.

Macro shots of soda lime glass Pyrex lit under a combination of kitchen window daylight and fluorescent tubes can create some unexpected color combinations and distorted shapes and tones.
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