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 the previous post, but it turns out that still quite a number of different situations where one can get some good abstract images.

Tip 1226 (Look for experiments with light and movement): Another method of getting some good abstract images is by looking to do experimentation with lights and the capturing the movement of such lights in a dark condition. One way of doing this is by getting into a closed room or even out in the open in the night when there are no surroundings nights, and then capture movement of light through a long exposure. This movement of light can be through somebody waving a light, or in some simple cases, hanging up some light fixtures on a slender support and then capturing the movement when wind shakes this support.

Tip 1227 (Capture the human figure in a hazy way or as a blur): This one is more difficult. You will always find people who cannot make the difference between a photo that is a great abstract blur, and a photo that is just a shaken image; but consider for example, a photo taken of a human face or a body where the face is a blur but it looks artistic. In addition, there is really nothing in the frame other than just the blurred human face, not too many details visible; the eye is drawn to the image and the brain tries to fill in the details of what the features on the face are.

Tip 1228 (Look for a simple start message and do some further processing): So, let us consider a broken down industrial building, or even a chimney belching smoke. Take this image, convert to a Black and White form, and then try and flatten the image somewhat using a tool such as Photoshop. Such a photo, even though it seems substantial in terms of showing an object, still comes out pretty abstract.

Tip 1229 (Look for leaves): Leaves are an interesting object that can provide a lot of abstract images. For example, take a leaf in sunlight such that the capillary structure from the underside of the leaf is visible on the top, and take a close up shot from above, or from an able. Try and ensure that you really don’t get the whole leaf, but just a part. Or even other objects such as trees with dense or interesting foliage, such as the fan of a palm tree, and see what kind of interesting images you can get from different sections of the tree.

Tip 1230 (Look for a break from a pattern): In previous tips, I mentioned how a pattern, being shot from different or interesting angles, can turn out to be a great abstract shot. Another way of breaking a pattern is through capturing some singular object breaking the pattern, that draws attention to the break. Some people do not consider such an image as an abstract image, since there is an easy identification of the details of the image, but I differ. The break in pattern type of effect, such as when you get early to a stadium and there is only one person among all the empty seats, all of those are an interesting break in pattern and is a gripping shot.

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

Read more on this topic in the next post (Abstract photography)

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