The Ultimate Guide to Abstract Photography

Abstract photography is challenging to define. It is taking a subject and forcing the viewer to look at it in a different way. This may cause the subject to lose its original meaning or purpose.

The subject could lose all literal meaning and be reduced to only shape, light, texture or color.

Photographed items could be objects we use in our daily life. They could also be created entirely for the purpose of art.

We’ve created a complete guide to learn the tricks and insights of abstract images.

What Is Abstract Photography?

Abstract photography is a very wide field of image capturing. Any subject can become abstract depending on the way it’s photographed.

Abstraction not only an undefined artwork. It a visual language relying on the composition of shapes, colors, forms and lines with an independent attitude from any previous visual reference.

It takes creative imagination and concept to be able to capture subjects in an abstract way. You are only limited by your vision and ideas.

Changing your usual perspective of the subject helps to create abstract images.

Shooting from up-down could allow you to focus on its shape and form. This changes the subjects’ meaning and purpose.

You could even create something from scratch.  Photographing an item relying on your off-camera creativity.

Other images, such as multiple exposures and ICM (Intentional Camera Movement) need the cameras’ help.

The best part of this area of photography is the lack of guidelines. There are no rules about composition or framing.

It all comes down to you, your view and what you find interesting or beautiful.

What you will discover from practicing this field is the philosophy of subtraction. More often than not, what you leave out of the image is as important as what you put in.

Mastering the freedom of composition is the key to any abstraction.

Three photographers utilized and developed this field of photography. Man Ray and László Moholy-Nagy started the trend, but Alfred Stieglitz made it popular.

Having a huge world in front of you with infinite possibilities can be as restricting as having none. Where do you start?

This all depends on what style you are interested in.

Abstract photography comes from looking at the details of subjects, not the whole. Get close to your subjects to see that it looks like close up.

Textures and patterns are reoccurring themes in this area of photography. So, see what the subject/object can offer.

From research, you will see that a suggestion of an object is much more powerful than seeing all it. It helps to create interest and excitement.

Abstract is in the eye of the beholder. As a photographer, you only have to capture what you see. Even if others can’t see it.

What you photograph is up to you. Abstraction means relieving the scene of representational qualities.

You can do this with any subject, as long as you look past the usual shapes and forms.

If it has a camera, you can photograph with it. At least when it comes to abstract photography.

You might find that lower-priced options for cameras and mobile phones can help to add an abstract quality to your images.