I am going to need some new Categories and Tags for my posts on here.
I have been using ‘Black and White’, ‘Landscape’, ‘Photography’. That pretty much sums up the entirety of the post so I generally also use the location as well, just to make it a bit more specific. ‘Bodmin Moor’ or ‘Warbstow Bury’ for example.
Inspired by my local artist friend Jen Dixon, a highly accomplished artist of many disciplines but particularly in abstracts, I have put my B&W landscape eye aside for a moment in order to get a little creative with colour.
I wanted to achieve a less literal and perhaps more unique way of describing the landscapes and what is going on in them. Photographic abstract impressionism though, rather than paint.
The seas crashing onto the Cornish cliffs and beaches, the hedgerows and the meadows on the clifftops are full of colour at this time of year. But the scenery – beautiful as it is – is photographed, in a conventional sense, by numerous hoards of people during the summer. It gets pretty hard to find a view or an angle that isn’t just like one you’ve seen before so I just wanted to do something a little different.
I have been taking pictures with intentional motion blur to end up with less of a real photograph of the place and more of an artistic impression of it. I use a filter to reduce the amount of light coming through the lens which then gives me a choice of longer shutter speeds. Then I move the camera – panning – during the approximately 1/4 second the shutter is open for.
All of what you see in the end result is achieved in the camera. I may tweak the framing, colour saturation and contrast a little but there’s no other digital trickery. Mainly because I wouldn’t know how.
The results are ultimately unpredictable. Many of the streaks of light look like brush strokes but are just how the light has ended up making its mark. They are also very abstract.
You quickly begin to see what scenery might work well and imagine how a composition might come together. Like any new technique or skill, it takes some time and experimentation to get the hang of it (emphasis on experimentation) but there is still a magical element of unforeseen surprise to see when looking over the final results at home later.
So here are a couple of seascapes to start off with that will hopefully show you the sort of thing I’m doing. You’ll see you can get the dynamism of the sea and all of the colours that are created by it, the wave breaks and the rock in these. I hope you like them.
I intend to make some prints available soon, so watch the Society6 shop for updates.