Contemplating Abstract Art | Avila Beach, CA

Abstract blue water ripples

Abstract blue water ripples

According to Google, “abstract” is defined as “existing in thought or as an idea but not having a physical or concrete existence” and Urban Dictionary defines abstract art as “art with no defined meaning. Its purpose is to let the viewer interpret its meaning for him/herself. More often than not, abstract art is a collection of meaningless shapes and colors thrown onto a canvas.”

The photo above is what I would classify as abstract photography. There is no defined meaning, and the subject is vague. I like the shapes and colors. They convey a sense of calm and peace to me…but maybe something else to you?

According to Ansel Adams “In a strict sense photography can never be abstract, for the camera is incapable of synthetic integration.” Certainly, the camera can’t capture something that isn’t there, and going back to the original definition, something that is abstract does not have “a physical concrete existence.”

Can photographers create abstract art? As with anything in the art world it all depends on personal interpretation. I believe photographic artists have the ability to see and create something beyond a subject’s “concrete existence.”


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