In terms of pictorialism, I guess the strongest formal element would be where the 'focus' lies. That's to say, the apparition to which your eyes are led. This is something F/64 didn't get in its clinical approach - i.e. if everything is in focus, what are we looking at? The boards, the thistles, the texture of the wood? http://static2.artsy.net/additional_...a4/1/large.jpg The only answer is "everything", since F/64 was a statement of technical intent - resolving power.
Looking at Weston's still life work aside from F/64, the statement lives in his concentration on form and sharpness becomes an incidental necessity. Where F/64 was about objective 'focus', pictorialism was about subjective 'focus' - it took a while before photographers realised both were vital in making a great image.
Subjective 'focus' shouldn't be confused with 'focal point' since much of pictorialism, like F/64 was in essence abstract. Most great photographs or paintings have multiple focal points.
Last edited by batwister; 01-23-2013 at 04:29 PM. Click to view previous post history.