October 2013
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5 tips to improve your photography skills – Taking abstract photos (contd) ..

In the previous post, we learned some details about abstract photography and the technique of moving the camera or the zoom lens while the shutter was open. In this post, we continue further in this world – the world of abstract photos. Abstract is the direct opposite of something that is clearly defined, and it is equally hard to give a clear definition of what an abstract photo is. You all know what a landscape is, what a portrait is, what are those clear and sharply defined photos of flowers, of trains, glass covered building. But just like the mind appreciates the clarity of a clearly defined object in your photos, the mind can at the same time appreciate those images which are the direct opposition of clearly defined. Consider the colors in an oil drop splattered in water, consider the texture of the wood grain in a small section of an old tree trunk, consider patterns that can be found in everyday matters, all of these are abstract photos that can be very beautiful. However, though some of the regular tips of photography don’t work here, there is still a lot that can be learnt about how to take better looking abstract photos (of course, there are a lot more tips besides these). In this post, we will talk about some more specific methods we can use. I thought I was done with this topic in some previous posts, but it turns out that still quite a number of different situations where one can get some good abstract images.

Tip 1236 (Look for abstract metal patterns): You can see metal patterns all around you. There can be a pattern in a metal gate, or in the criss-cross of the lattice of various metal lids. Look for those patterns and get a close up of those shots. They can be very interesting in some cases, and you can leave people guessing about what the abstract shot actually is of.

Tip 1237 (A burning candle): A burning candle can provide some great objects for photos. The dripping wax that falls down from a burning candle, the dance of flame that happens at the burning tip, all of these, when shot in close up, can provide some great photos. You may need to experiment with the lighting and the distance, but the photos can come out great; or atleast some of them can come out great. If you get close enough and sharp enough, the small amount of wax which falls from the flaming tip can be captured and looks great.

Tip 1238 (Looks for imperfections in texture): Let us take a candle as an example. I am not talking about the sheer smooth candle, but look for older candles. In many of them, the material of the candle seems to form colorful knots (and you can find such imperfections in other substances as well); getting a close up of such imperfections results in a great colorful abstract image; as normal, just need to find the right angle, light and distance.

Tip 1239 (Reflection from colorful confetti): Ever seen those movies where there is a ticker tape parade for somebody important, or a lot of confetti up in the air. The light seems to shine from all those colorful small pieces, and you can get a great effect. If you have some small colorful bits of plastic or colored shiny paper, throw them up in the air, have a light in the background, and shoot your image through that falling confetti. You can get some great effects.

Tip 1240 (Look for light through some small slits): I was watching the movie Gladiator right now, and there is a scene near the end when the gates are being opened just before the final fight, and there are small slits through which the light emerges, and it gives a great effect. It is fairly easy to simulate such a photo, whereby if you have a shuttered door or window with small slits, or something similar, and watch at the time when light is coming in that direction, you can get some great photos of that light.

Photographing the Patterns of Nature Photo Inspiration: Secrets Behind Stunning Images 101 Quick and Easy Ideas Taken from the Master Photographers

Some useful videos from Youtube on shooting abstract photos:

Oil On Water – photo idea!

Abstract Photography

Abstract Art Photography

Abstract Photographer Lester Hayes

Abstract Photography

How to Take Abstract Photography

Give it a go: Abstract Macro Images

“PhotoTips” Episode 84 – Abstract Art Photography

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