Mixed media Abstract

Discussion in 'Abstract' started by ajhingel, Nov 20, 2016.

  1. I'm sure, that I'm not the only around here who works with other "media" apart from photography. I paint, make sculptures (wood, bronze) and draw, mostly abstract work, and I continue my passion for photography.`Many of my abstract works are based on a combination of these. They are so-called mixed media works.
    My paintings and sculptures live their own life, but I use them sometimes as source for photographical work and digital modifications, creating abstract or surrealistic images. In some cases I use photos (nature, architecture) for the similar digital modification workflows.
    Whether that process results in something that can be called "abstract photography" is of course depending on definitions. I would include suggest to include them, in the hope of sharing likeminded works of photonetters.
    See exemple below

  2. One more, and I will wait and see of other do similar mixid media works with camera.
  3. Well, that seems to give a clear message, telling that:
    • There are no-one around who makes mixed media work with camera and digital modification to make abstract images - or no-one who cares to share such work.
    • Abstract imagess, like those that I have shown, are probably not considered to be "abstract photography" and therfore considered to be beyond the concerns of this forum.
    I take note.
  4. Speaking for myself alone I would not consider the above not to be abstract photography simply because it's not what I am inclined to do. I'd hate to see anything excluded.
  5. Sometimes it takes a while before others will pursue a certain approach. The important thing that Anders has done is to communicate the possibilities such that others might try this approach. There are several portfolios where post exposure creation leads to surreal like or fantasy images based on figurative elements. As those are claimed as photography there is no reason I think why abstracts so made cannot be. I think the first image is a particularly successful one as the juxtaposition of the cylinders, in one case diagonally, otherwise in seemingly more arbitrary positions, activates the viewer's curiosity. This occurs in this essentially monochrome image, without requiring recourse to an extended colour palette. Bravo.
  6. I often do mixed media work with combining photography painting and sometimes sculpture.
    This piece was done by combining a B&W photo of an owls skull with a watercolour done by injecting paint under strips of plastic wrap adhered to wet watercolour paper. The two images were then combined in PS.
  7. Here is another. This one done by applying wet on wet watercolour using a glass plate as a stamp for the paint. Several of these were then combined in PS using various blend modes.
  8. Sculpture + photography
  9. last one
  10. Gordo, I like very much the "last one". Good composition, great color mix.
  11. Gordon, Bones is instructive in terms of technique used, and subtely impressive in terms of composition, texture and tonality.
  12. Anders, on your first posted image which part is the oil pastels and which part is the digital? I'm curious to see the process in your thinking behind creating such a photo because I can't see this as other than a photographic recording of an abstract oil pastel painting.
    For me Gordon has really defined the method of what I'ld consider as mixed media photography in a way I never thought about implementing. Really interesting approaches, Gordon.
    I'm sorry to say I don't have any mixed media abstract photos to post since I don't paint or sculpt. I wonder what other media or approach similar to what Gordon conjured could be considered.
    What if I took several differently colored spent pieces of chewing gum and mashed them together and photographed it as a macro? I guess the gum could be considered a sculpture seeing that something was changed or manipulated in the gum and not just me photographing a piece of gum I found in the trash.
    At least this thread got me to put on my thinking cap. It's certainly got me scratching my head.
  13. I was playing with assemblage and camera on a part of a painting of mine.
  14. "Anders, on your first posted image which part is the oil pastels and which part is the digital?" (Tim)
    The image you see, only exist as a digital Tiff file. The oil pastel painting is the red/orange cylinder. The rest is made by layers upon layers of copy/paste, without changing size of the cylinder image, and using 100% transparency/fill filters, after which, some Curves and Gamma/Offset corrections - all in PS. I have made this type of abstract images, with changing work processes, the last 6-7 years. Especially the changing of the transparency/fill filters strength, opens waste creative possibilities.

    These images are not made for screen projection. I put much efforts into the printing of these images, where I go to a professional fine art printer, who I have worked with for years, and decide with him the choice of of printing paper (mostly some kind of Canson Infinity Rag papers) and preparation for big format printing on demand.
  15. Anders I was glad to read that you print these mixed media abstract pieces large. While admiring your Carrés d'images I have often considered that they would look their best printed large.
  16. A primitive approach to copy-paste-flip-repeat.
    The original image was made using a plastic viewfinder from a disposable camera, reversed and taped onto the front of a macro lens. the subject mater was some strongly backlit reeds.
  17. Same idea with motion blurred mushroom gills.
  18. With this one, the salamander photo was flipped and then layered with a painted background, with a texture layer then added.
  19. Gordon, sorry for calling you Gordo ! Sounds more French !
    Yes, I print these abstract images in large format, mostly on demand, as 100/100 or 80/80 cm prints. They only communicate in that size. Smaller, they or mainly just colored designs, but in big size, on a wall they, as I experience them, they start communicating more complex messages and feelings.
  20. Anders, my first though was that gordo is Spanish slang for fat person... something which my Mexican sister in-law finds funny, since I am so thin.
  21. Another of mine. Same process.
  22. Anders, nice 3D effect.
  23. Really love that last one, Anders. I take it you've really studied and are very familiar with color relationships including their use in optical effects.
    That link Gordon provided of one of your gallery folder of abstracts shows you have very keen graphic design sense. I wonder if your works have been used by interior designers.
  24. Thanks Gordon and Tim.
    To answer the direct question from Tim, yes these images have been used by interior designers (New York, San Francisco, Doha) but have especially been sold to private collectors in US, Canada, Turkey and middle East - God knows why!
    However, please don't turn this into a discussion on me. It was not my intention. What I wanted was to share similar works with photonetters and possibly inspire. Mixed media work, heavily depending on photographic skills, has waste creative possibilities waiting to be explored. Gordon's and Bill's work about show that some do in fact work with these technics, but I'm sure there are others around.
    Concerning colour theory. I don't think any photographer working seriously with a camera can advance without digging into colour theory. Not necessarily by going back to school or by reading tons of books and articles (there are so many out there) but by using and training one's eyes in seeing - and seeing what artist have seen throughout history when painting their masterpieces. Expositions and museums are there to exploit for us all.
    I must say, that personally I read a lot and have found much inspiration in the theoretical writings of people like Kandinski and Bauhouse artists (Itten) but especially Goethe which they all refer to. Much in abstract art (in colors!) depend on it.
  25. Bauhaus of course, sorry !
  26. However, please don't turn this into a discussion on me. It was not my intention. What I wanted was to share similar works with photonetters and possibly inspire.​
    To be quite honest, Anders, I wasn't making it about you as the center piece of this thread even though you, me, Gordon and a few others seem to be the only ones interested in this genre so it may only look like you're the focus. I must confess in the past years of your posting obviously photoshopped mirrored butterfly "Rorschach Test" style abstracts I always saw them as amateurish and simplistically experimental.
    It took Gordon's link to your folder to alert me I was wrong. Or at least you've been real busy creating new works I hadn't seen in your gallery since last I looked which has been several years now.
    Thanks for the link to Goethe. Itten was someone I remember back in school reading up on how Bauhaus heavily influenced and inspired font designers and layout artists in the graphics industry to where every creation seemed to ooze adult sophistication to sell high end products to the quite wealthy.
  27. Thanks Tim. It should be mentioned that Bauhaus through the many years it did exit in Germany found inspiration in Russia, Netherlands and Italy which made it into much more than a production hall for industrial graphic work for high end products to quit wealthy, as you write. It was a highly political, some times, communist artistic movement of artists in all fields (dance, photography, theatre) that inspired artist throughout Europe and America already in the 20's and created movements in many artistic movements in many fields, which can still be felt.
    As we all know, because of its political orientation it was closed down by Hitler's henchmen and several schools were created abroad, among which, one finds a school in America, which by the way again was prosecuted during the McCarthy period for un-American activities (read: Communist). After the War another school was created in East-Germany, which still exits again in Dessau.
    There is a big exposition in Louvre these days on Bauhaus and its artists.
  28. Wow! Bauhaus pissed off Hitler enough for him to shut it down. That's some interesting back history on that movement, Anders.
    I only did light reading on the subject back in the early '80's to get inspiration as an art student. I never associated Bauhaus with Communism or Socialism. I did see how it heavily influenced the look of modern advertising and graphics, but what else were we to copy from?
  29. This is one of works of Kandinsky and this when he was teacher at Bauhaus in 1923. Or Lyonel Feininger another of Bauhaus teachers, together with Paul Klee, who joined even before. Or László Moholy-Nagy who introduced the New Objectivity movement in the school, just to mention a few of the painters who had little to do with industrial design but much to do with color theory and abstractions.
    Feiningen also made the woodcut "Cathedral of Socialism" which became the main logo of the Bauhaus school in Germany.
  30. momentarily cutting back to the original subject, I was killing some time in the DC airport today, and came across a piece of abstract wall art, which was a large assembly of lit tubes behind glass, rather nice in its own right, but also rather interesting in detail, so here is an abstraction of an abstraction.
  31. You are right we are surrounded by abstract images. It's all a question of opening our eyes. There are even abstract subjects in abstract images, to be discovered.
    I have always found it interesting how our eyes, and attention, can be geared towards very particular aspects of reality and suddenly you almost only see that, when you go shooting photos. It can be colours, forms, shapes, lights, movements - or it can be abstracts among all the very recognisable dimensions of reality.
  32. Phil, it seems to me all to be a question of degree of the importance of having a digital file to work on and to which degree that digital file is depending on works based on other artistic tools, as I see it.
    Looking for definitions of "digital art" you find formulations like this:
    Digital art is an artistic work or practice that uses digital technology as an essential part of the creative or presentation process.​
    In fact all my photografies, since now more than 10 years, are based on "digital technology".
    All hangs on the concept of "essential part of the creative or presentation process".
    If you take the very first of the images in this threat, it is, I would say, 50% a abstract painting of mine and 50% digital modifications of a photographical file.
    That most of my abstract works, where I have used photography, end up as prints and presented in various, mostly, on-line galleries as "mixed media works", is another point, which, I agree, should not prevent us from using any other understanding of the concept here around.
  33. By the way, Phil, tell us something especially about the first image you up-loaded above. What is it ? How was it made ? I like it.
  34. Very well done. I have been working on similar collage images based on a single or a few photos, trying to show the specific features, colours and light of certain cities: Paris, Tokyo, Copenhagen, Toronto. Again for me such works are more "abstract" than representative.
    And the second. What is that, then? Looks interesting too.
  35. Thanks. So this mast image is surely an abstract "digital" work. Well made.

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