The Words "Art" and "Photography" Belong Together
Most people do indeed get this: it's what's in the frame that counts.
In brief: if you like what's in the frame, then you do, and if you don't, you don't. If you like it enough, you could buy it. (I have in the past also rented art!)
The two questions on the mind of the remaining skeptics relates to how the art got into that frame.
Does it even matter whether it requires extraordinary skill, an elevated talent which few could possess no matter how hard we worked?
Does photography require such skill? Couldn't anyone just press the shutter button?
Well, you already know what I think, but for clarity:
1/ Technique does matter, and I enjoy a work of art for both of i) how it appeals to me visually) and ii) the skill which I imagine was required to produce it. The optimal balance between those factors is harder to pin down.
2/ Not just anyone can produce photographic art.
Anyway, as one of my photographic mentors says, when challenged that "anyone could have taken that picture", "Yes, but you didn't. I did. If you want to make it (not take it), then by all means go ahead and do so."
I could talk about the principles of composition, and about light, numerous camera settings and manual skills required. But rather than continue along those lines, I prefer to show some photographs.
Gallery Raymond, Kingston, Fri. Jan. 25
This recent image, captured quite spontaneously at a hardware store, has been quite popular, and illustrates the point very well. It's such an everyday thing, and yet many consider it art.
The above image is one which I will be exhibiting soon, at the Gallery Raymond in Kingston, Ontario. I chose to include it in consultation with, first, a cherished member of my inner circle (thank you), and second, the curator (Raymond).
There are seven of us, each showing seven photographic prints. The company I'm keeping there is pretty heady, and I feel honoured to be included among them.
The Gallery Raymond by the way is at 334 Princess St., Kingston, and the official wine-and-cheese opening is at 8:00 p.m. I would dearly love to see you all there.
The show runs for a month after that. All of the works are for sale. To get there, you will walk through the front room of mostly paintings, and they will also take your breath away. Raymond's gallery is an incredible art-resource to the city of Kingston and environs - be sure to check it out. Be forewarned: many of you will walk out with a work of art which you will cherish for decades, be it photographic or otherwise.
The World contains many other art-photography galleries, e.g. the Bau-Xi in Toronto. In other words: art ... photography ...
A prominent Brockville photographer, Bill Milward, got in touch recently to invite me on a group session, photographing in a vacant indoor space to which he had procured access. (Thank you, Bill!) Most of the other members are with the Brockville and Area Photography Club, so getting to meet them and learn more about the club was a very good thing.
With this photograph, I had the concept of juxtaposing the frames-within-frames against the door-hinge, about which I broke some "rules", and then found the eye not settling easily on the hinge, which is really the only thing I had placed in sharp focus and where I wished the emphasis. After some experimentation, it seemed to go better with a matting around it, and that of a certain colour.
Others of my photographs from that day reside here.
The number and variety of details which the other photographers found, and of which they produced striking art, is astounding. Here are some of Bill's own photos from that and other similar sessions. If any of the other participants would like links to their own work, please let me know.
So, I cannot answer that question for you:
"Do the words 'photography' and 'art" belong together in the same sentence?"
Whatever your opinion, I assure you other people feel passionately contrarily.
But you know what I think.
An art-photographer releases the shutter. But she does more than "just" release the shutter.
While you're here:
Remember that I make photographs and that I sell photographs.
Almost everything which you see on this web site is for sale. Prices at the time of writing, for example, for an 11x14" fine-art print with a generous white border would start at about $50, and you can go up or down from there. Check the rates page. More importantly, check out my gallery. I would love to provide you with a work of fine-art photography, or to discuss a commission.
Book a portrait-sitting - the right frequency with which to commission formal portraits is a bit more often.
Remember also to leave a comment, or to contact me. Note that on the main blog page you can sign up for new-blog notifications. I am very careful and respectful with your privacy.
Thank you so much for reading.
Charles T. Low