Abstract vs Abstraction

Discussion in 'Abstract' started by kisatchie, Dec 2, 2016.

  1. Rick, thanks Good digital work, but do you consider this as "abstract photography" ?
    Where does the camera come in ?
  2. I don't know what Abstraction is from Abstract expressed in an image medium, so I don't know what to post. I don't do full on digital CGI even if a photo was used as blueprint or framework to build the image on.
  3. Anders - More of a question than a photograph.
  4. Probably neither abstract nor abstraction.
    Fantasy / Animation ???
    Photo.net . . . not a photo.
  5. Fred - If this image started with Rick's snapping a shutter on a camera, why wouldn't it be considered a photo?
  6. Did it start with the snap of a shutter or a camera?
  7. It looks more like a graphical representation of a reiterative equation
  8. Michael, I'm not sure it did start with the snap of a shutter. But I do think images, even ones that did start with a snap of the shutter, can pass beyond being a photo at some point. In any case, I realize after I posted that it might sound like a put-down and I mean no disrespect to Rick at all and actually love some of the work being done in computer graphics these days.
    My main point, for the purposes of this forum, and since Rick did ask, was to say I don't find this image to be either abstract or abstraction, but rather an example of what I'd call fantasy. That's because even though the content may be unrecognizable in a real-world sort of way, the content seems to play an important role here. I don't think abstract or abstraction simply refers to content that's unrecognizable or non-real-world oriented, but rather to situations where shape, color, and geometry (line, form) are used in such a way as to be independent from visual references in the world. I don't think that's the case here. These shapes and colors seem to have visual references in the world (a world of fantasy) as opposed to being actual abstractions that are just a matter of shape, line, and color.
  9. david_henderson

    david_henderson www.photography001.com

    I've been a bit inhibited from contributing to the "abstract" threads because I'm not sure what constitutes abstract in this forum (though I do agree that whatever, it should be a photograph).
    But whilst I see that its not difficult to produce an abstract painting- in the sense of being non representative/non-figurative, for a photograph whatever you do there's something real on the other end of the lens? Don't know how this forum gets around this? Whether someone decides, or there's a consensus? Does just photographing part of something count- is abstract simply a (relatively) unusual way of seeing something?
    And, back to this thread, is the fact that whatever Rick Bortnick created has been photographed to put up here, sufficient to consider that what's up here ( as against the original art) is an abstract photograph?
  10. David, for me, the fact that Rick may have photographed his creation simply in order to post it would not lead me to consider it an abstract photo. He wouldn't have had to photograph it, though, in order to post it. If he created it as a computer graphic, he could easily just post it directly as an image from his computer.
    I'm pretty liberal in what I would be comfortable seeing posted to this forum. Don't hold yourself back! I think if someone considers their work abstract, they should post it. Others might disagree and it could make for interesting discussion, but more interesting to me than categorizing it one way or the other would be seeing what other people see as abstract about it and asking why. While it's called "abstract photography", my personal view is that it can comfortably include stuff that is considered an abstraction as opposed to necessarily being "purely" abstract.
    You bring up interesting considerations about photography as opposed to painting. We do know that something in the real world was photographed, even to make an abstract photo. So I'd say it's not about what we know but about what we see, what the appearance is. An abstract photo, of the most extreme type, would be where I have no clue as to what might have been photographed and where the line, shape, and color are the things appearing to me without visual references to whatever it was that was actually shot.
    Like I said, I'm pretty liberal in my categorizations, so I'd say that even if I can recognize what may have been shot and there are visual references to the world, it's appropriate to post stuff here that uses abstraction as at least part of the expression. To some extent, every photo, even the most obvious and recognizable, uses abstraction (shape, line, and form), so really any photo might fit in. I'd include a photo with very recognizable subject matter only if I felt the other elements (shape, light, line, shadow, form, color) had a meaningful enough effect to somehow alter the factuality or way in which I recognize the subject matter. And, again, I realize a case can be made that these things always have a meaningful effect.
    To some extent, I think it can also be how we each perceive it. I can perceive even the most factual or representative of photos in an abstract manner. And if there's reason to post a very recognizable "subject matter" oriented photo to be perceived abstractly, that could be an interesting exercise in itself.
  11. What about still life compositions created with a scanner?
  12. I would call a still life composition created with a scanner a "scan." If you want to post one here, I would either assess it on its merits or ignore it but I would have no problem with your posting it. I think PN may have a policy regarding what is considered appropriate to post on this site, based on how it's created. I don't know exactly where one finds that statement of policy, but I do remember reading it at some point.
  13. Thanks for the conversation everyone. That was/is the point of the image/thread.
    I created the image & mapped leaf coloration over it. It was a response to the Trash thread. After reading it, I was curious about the new thread itself ... Abstract.
    Is there was a difference between Abstract/Abstraction? And what/how do people think about them when presented with a purely non-real image.
    As for me, I may not be able to tell the difference between the two, but I know it when I see it :)
  14. I think PN may have a policy regarding what is considered appropriate to post on this site, based on how it's created. I don't know exactly where one finds that statement of policy, but I do remember reading it at some point.​
    From past and current discussions it appears this forum is going to be quite a bit liberal on what's accepted compared to No Words forum. The mod took down my photo of a leaf floating on clear water showing the sun's rays glistening in the waves crests creating a prism like color effect in the thread... "Lights On Water" (Pictorial).
    So I guess anyone can post anything that shows lines, forms and shapes as Fred pointed out in the Abstract Photography forum. We'll just argue over whether it's an Abstract photo in order to create interest. What else are we going to talk about in this forum anyway?
  15. As for me, I may not be able to tell the difference between the two, but I know it when I see it :)
    Hopefully you see as if for the first time like a child.
    I was reminded of that statement while watching the Hitchcock movie, "The Wrong Man" several days ago. It is a very realistic portrayal of an innocent man going through the process of incarceration and imprisonment for the first time in his life for a crime he didn't commit.
    Hitchcock shows Henry Fonda's wide eyed fearful stares and jump cuts to what he's looking at throughout the movie just as a child would see for the first time. The views are of little details of the inside of the dark, dank and small jail cell.
    Earlier in the movie there's a jump cut POV to a close up of these oddly shaped handcuffs dangling from a prison guard's belt that look quite abstract in their shape. They were so abstract looking I didn't know what they were for. And like those strange looking handcuffs appearing foreign and unfamiliar just as if a child was seeing them for the first time is how I define an abstract when I see it.
  16. Fred, I'm most interested in the point at which an image passes beyond being a photograph. Can you please elaborate?
  17. Michael, sure.
    The problem is it would be like trying to tell you the point when a mole hill becomes a mountain. There are mole hills and there are mountains even though the exact point when one might become the other is an imprecise thing. When does a pile of sand become a hill and then when does the hill become a mountain? If one starts with a single grain of sand and adds a grain of sand at a time, is there a specific point or number of grains one needs in order to call it a heap? We differentiate many things even though we can't specify a specific time, place, or amount when the transition occurred.
    With enough additions, changes, or manipulations made to a photo, it can at some point no longer be considered a photo and instead be considered digital art. It's not a matter of a precise breaking point. Something once considered a photo, with enough done to it, can become something that is no longer a photo.
    The philosophical story of the SORITES PARADOX applies here.
  18. The answer to Sorites Paradox: at least two.
  19. Sanford, thanks for the appropriate photo. The answer to the Sorites Paradox is not at least two.

    Many would call what you've photographed a "cairn" but some would question that because this rock formation is not
    necessarily being made as a memorial or as a meaningful marker of a trail. Most of these rock creations, which have
    been gaining in popularity, have a sort of zen-like purpose, are a more meditative statement than anything else. The
    sense of balance is kind of cool. They are abstract in the sense that they are not usually meant to represent something.
    They don't depict something. They are a collection of materials not necessarily referring to anything.

    Interestingly, these rock formations are somewhat controversial as they more and more become human impositions on
    natural landscapes, reminders of a prior human presence not that unlike writing in graffiti that you were here in the
    tradition of Kilroy, who became a fond token of WWII GIs.
  20. This man, who calls himself, Whitehorse, claims to have invented the art form of rock stacking. Here is something I discovered about the more permeant stacked rock sculptures, they have a hole drilled through all layers and are held together by a long screw.
  21. I don't know what Whitehorse's claim involves, but rock stacking has been around since prehistoric times. As a matter of fact, what's cool about that is that some things never change!
  22. Don't give them any ideas. Next they you know Wal Mart will sell rock stacking kits for Xmas stocking stuffers next to the Chia Trump,
  23. I thought this would be an interesting forum .... not so.... Probably won't be back, too much rudness !!
  24. Wm., where are you reading rudeness in this thread?
    You won't find discussions this thoughtfully and intelligently written with a human touch (not some marketing hack) anywhere online. I've looked for about ten years over at Quora, TedTalks, Reddit and others. Nothing like this place.

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