Friday, April 22, 2022

Four abstracts


As you know, one of my ongoing photography pursuits has been to create abstract images of stream environments. I have always found fully abstract images to be complicated, and though they have never been my favorite avenue in visual arts, I am also aware of their counter intuitive power. Despite the ridiculous old saw of "My five year old can do that!", the truth is that making a fully abstract image that works visually, and perhaps even is affecting, is insanely difficult and far less common than one might think. I suppose a less tutored version of myself could look at a Kandinsky or Pollock and, while impressed, still wonder about how easy that might be to make. But the common abstract images of my life, less famous- a large painting posted just past the entrance of my library, the circle painting of my elevator lobby, the quirky amateur abstracts of my local resale shops, are readily available, telling examples of just how flat and lifeless abstract painting is by default.

I have never had any strong interest in abstract painting, nor any sense I'd be much good at it, so it was a surprise when I found it cropping up around the edges of my photography. As suggested in the paragraph above, it is by no means something I have found simple to do, but having stumbled upon a few small successes along the way I take a delight in it.

Because I am working with photography there are unmistakable reflections of real world imagery that modify the level of abstraction in my pictures. But a couple of days ago I was down a the base of Shadow Falls, where shadow creek runs thicker with mosses and algae. This seemed to help my cause. Among my large collection of pictures from that day I got a few that were over towards some of the furthest parts of pure abstraction I have yet managed.

Naturally I wanted to share them with you.

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