What makes a fine-art photograph?
I have been doing some photography for a couple of years now, and I have been thinking of getting into fine-art photography. I don't know that much about it, other than it takes hard work (of course) and a fairly amount of research.
Can some of you tell me your view on what makes a photograph fine-art? Is it by making only one perfect and unique picture of a scene, and making it the only photograph there is?
If some of you are working with fine-art photography, what is your advice for those who want to get started in what I think is an artistically rewarding area of photography?
What exactly fine art photography is may be subject to discussion (And it has been discussed a lot). As far as I know it has to do with proper techniques (focusing, developing and printing skills). Usually, fine art images are also carefully composed and thought out rather than captured in a journalistic style. They are a product of your imagination rather than merely capturing what is just there. Some may also say that unless it´s not printed on fibre paper, it is no fine print. It has nothing to do with the subject whatsoever I think. You can make fine prints even from the most superfluous things.
Last edited by Slixtiesix; 12-12-2012 at 03:02 PM. Click to view previous post history.
I consider myself non fine art photographer : I don't care for temperature of developer too much, I don't care if my fiber based silver gelatin print is not flat 100%, I don't care if I have couple of small dusts of dents on the print, I don't use lightmeter with my M3, often my lens is not perfect clean. I just don't care for those imperfections and enjoy in image as it is. This attitude is not possible if you want to be fine art photographer.
edit: When there is nothing to be added and nothing to be removed from final print - then I consider this print to be fine art.
Fine-art photography is such a broad category as to be almost un-definable. If what sells in high-end galleries is fine art photography, then the standards of execution are meaningless. It doesn't require perfect lenses (or even any lenses at all). It doesn't require perfect production techniques (experimental work is highly regarded these days). It doesn't even require a recognizable subject! Given what constitutes 'fine art photography' these days, your kids' accidental exposures of their feet qualify (if you print them big enough!). Pinhole images, photograms, chemicograms (images formed purely through the action of chemistry on photo paper), black-and-white, color, dignified portraits, snapshots of prostitutes in flagrante , landscapes of the Sierra laden with snow, muddy excavation pits in dystopian suburban developments, it's all fair game.
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it really isn't to hard.
just photograph what you like
fine a market for it
and sell your images.
they will become " fine art photographs"
if you do a search in the search bar and put "fine art photography" in quotes ( as i did )
you will learn what others have to say about it. for the most part anything is is "fine art"
including conceptual images that many people "don't get"
good luck !
“You seek escape from pain. We seek the achievement of happiness. You exist for the sake of avoiding punishment. We exist for the sake of earning rewards. Threats will not make us function; fear is not our incentive. It is not death that we wish to avoid, but life that we wish to live.” - John Galt
Thank you very much for your replies folks, I really appreciated it. I will definitely try and move forward towards fine art, maybe if I'm lucky get something into a gallery. Who knows, I could get lucky.
And thanks jnanian for that last post.
By the way, I have a flickr page you can look at if you want: http://www.flickr.com/photos/gorlingimages/
Fine art photographs are those that have no other purpose than to be themselves. They are not of weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, events, news stories, real estate where the intent is to represent the property for sale, travels, or other things that need to have an image made for a reason. That said, fine art images can be about any of those things but just not for a purpose. The field is so wide open and amorphous that it might as well be thought of as indefinable in terms of what a fine art photograph 'should' or 'does' look like. Interesting anyone other than yourself in what you've pictured, however, is also as mysterious as whatever the 'fine art' photograph is. Photograph whatever interests you, and do it well. Let someone else decide for himself what it is beyond that.
What is Fine Art Photography is the same question as What is Art.
If you think it's Fine Art, then it is.
If it's in a space where art is viewed, (as art) then it is art.