Like abstract painting, abstract photograph chooses to isolate shapes, lines, color, divorced from reality and boiled down to the very essence of a sensation or impression. The difference is painting starts with a blank canvas and adds elements whereas in abstract photography the photographer uses a camera to isolate and subtract from reality.
Finding shapes, patterns, detail and composition from the larger world and eliminating all sense of context and meaning other than the pure sensation and tension created by line, texture, light, dark, color and perhaps movement.
Abstract photography, sometimes called non-objective, experimental, conceptual or concrete photography, is a means of depicting a visual image that does not have an immediate association with the object world and that has been created through the use of photographic equipment, processes or materials.
An abstract photograph may isolate a fragment of a natural scene in order to remove its inherent context from the viewer, it may be purposely staged to create a seemingly unreal appearance from real objects, or it may involve the use of color, light, shadow, texture, shape and/or form to convey a feeling, sensation or impression.
The image may be produced using traditional photographic equipment like a camera, darkroom or computer, or it may be created without using a camera by directly manipulating film, paper or other photographic media, including digital presentations.