If you are an experienced or novice photographer it is an inevitability that you will eventually decide to do some “art” photography. Just like painting can be representative of a subject (meaning photographic in its execution) or it can be abstract, so too can photography. Abstract photography tends to be viewed as art photography, and it can use many of the same techniques as more traditional work, but it also has to be done with a few special considerations too.
What sort of special considerations are required? The first thing to note is the format that you intend to record the images. If you are going to be “tinkering” with your photographs in an editing program you may want to consider shooting your art photos in the RAW format. While a JPG file tends to be the universal choice for many modern photographers, it is only the RAW files that can allow you the ultimate in control and quality.
For example, if you shoot an image in JPG and with your camera set on the black and white option, the sensor will not send messages to the memory about the actual color values it is “seeing”. Instead, the data will head into the memory in a much more flat pattern with only the varying shades of grey, white and black memorized. Should you shoot the same image in full color and in RAW, your photo editing program will allow you to enjoy a much stronger range of options where conversion is concerned. This can lead to a black and white image with striking depth and an impressive amount of high and low lighting.
Once you decide the format of the files, you will then need to understand your actual goals. When people discuss art photography they may be speaking in a “coded” language and referring to nude photography, abstract imagery, or even “fine” art photography instead. Only the photographer can understand what they want to see in the final prints and this determines how the photographs are taken.
For example, let’s say that you are hoping to work strictly in the abstract sense. You would need to know how to set your camera to record images with the basic looks you want, and you would also need to understand how to use your photo editing software to obtain the final results to their fullest degree. You may need to understand the various effects of filters and special lenses too, and these tend to be tools employed regularly by all photographers, but especially by those creating more alternative imagery.