Ah the perpetual questions of photography’s place in the art world, which started with the birth of photography 150 or so ago. Is photography art? Is all photographer art? What makes some photography art and other photography not art?
Most importantly IS MY PHOTOGRAPHY ART? Or which of my photograph are considered art and others simply snapshots?
For me the argument has been settled long ago when photographer’s began to be shown at art shows in galleries and museums and collectors began collecting photographs as fine art.
Photography is an accepted fine art medium. All major art museums have photography collections. Photographers has been granted major retrospective at MOMA, The Tate Modern and other predominate museums. Photography is taught as a fine art medium in art schools around the world.
But certainly not every photograph is considered art. To me the difference is the intent of the photographer. The artist uses photography to create a specific vision they wish to communicate with the world. This is different than a randomly shot snapshot. The intent is to create a single image or series of images that explore an idea.
This is why the modern art world ignores Peter Lik and no major museum has his work in their collections. He creates beautifully rendered postcard images but there is no meaning or intent behind them other than to create a pretty picture. Today’s museums collect art which explores ideas beyond simple beauty. So photography that explores ideas is considered fine art while a beautifully shot landscape basically falls into the realm of craft.
When is photography art? When it pushes the boundaries, when it shows us a new way of seeing, when it exposes a truth, when it explores an idea, when it pushes us out of our comfort zone, when it shows us how to see anew.
How to Succeed in Fine Art Photography with Brooke Shaden plus further reading.
“Anyone can become a fine art photographer, but not everyone can become a gallery-represented artist.”
Talent alone will not bring you recognition as a fine art photographer. For that, you need exposure to collectors and museums. Galleries can give you that exposure, but first you need an effective marketing plan to reach the galleries. You will find that plan in From Photographer to Gallery Artist.
Author Kara Lane conducted hundreds of hours of research, and contacted over sixty galleries, to find the best strategies for getting your fine art photography into galleries. Now she is sharing the secrets she discovered with you.
In this complete guide to finding gallery representation, you will learn:
The criteria galleries use to evaluate fine art photography
Three primary resources for identifying the best galleries for you
The tools you need to showcase your images and experience
Six major marketing strategies for attracting gallery representation
Key issues to discuss with galleries before agreeing to representation
How eight famous fine art photographers achieved their success
Self-assessment questions to help clarify what you want from your life and art
Lists of recommended portfolio review events, art fairs, juried shows and competitions, art magazines and blogs, artist websites, and other resources to help you become a gallery-represented fine art photographer
With your talent, effort, and persistence…and the research and marketing strategies in From Photographer to Gallery Artist…you can achieve gallery representation!
Did you know? Fine Art Photography – Known also as “photographic art“, “artistic photography” and so on, the term “fine art photography” has no universally agreed meaning or definition: rather, it refers to an imprecise category of photographs, created in accordance with the creative vision of the cameraman.
“Fine art is about an idea, a message, or an emotion. The artist has something that they want to have conveyed in their work.
That idea or message may be something small, a single word such as abandon, or it may be a whole statement, like exploring the way the moon affects the tides. It is a start. It is like a hypothesis.”
In recent years as the field of photography has exploded, many photographers consider selling their work to make a profit and to help defray the high costs of equipment. But, many photographers don’t have the business and marketing knowledge required to successfully sell fine art photographs; and many of those who have tried have been met with disappointment. Until now, little information of value has been available.
In Marketing Fine Art Photography, Alain Briot offers practical, up-to-date and field-tested marketing techniques from the viewpoint of a fine art landscape photographer who earns a living from the sale of his fine art prints.
Briot teaches that by taking control of the selling process, you can increase your profits and, ultimately, direct your own destiny. Briot’s approach is based on offering quality not quantity; and offering something unique, rather than something that is mass-produced. Though directed toward selling fine art, this method can be applied to other products.
After a series of trials and errors, Briot devised a marketing system that allowed him to get out of debt, pay for a state-of-the-art studio, and purchase his first home, all from the sale of his photography. Briot has taught fine art photography marketing to numerous students in seminars, through one-on-one consulting, and through his Marketing Mastery tutorial DVD.
Defining fine art photography
Wholesale, retail, and consignment
Knowing your customer
Where to sell and how to price fine art
Fundamentals of marketing and salesmanship
Profitability and honesty in business
Packing and shipping fine art
Common marketing mistakes
The unique selling proposition (USP)
New Signed and Numbered Limited Edition Prints by Edward Fielding on Zatista
The online gallery, Zatista handles a number of limited edition series of photographs by fine art photographer Edward M. Fielding. These are signed and numbered prints limited to 100 copies or less of each image in the size described. The prints are shipped directly from the artist in a mailing tube and include a certificate of authenticity.
As a collector who wants something more special than an open edition reproduction, these prints will satisfy the desire to own something of limited quantity.
The following prints by Edward FIelding have recently been release from Zatista. Each is a gallery quality Giclée print on natural white, matte, ultra smooth, 100% cotton rag, acid and lignin free archival paper using Epson K3 archival inks. Custom trimmed with 2″ border for framing.
Every single day we’re hard at work building a company that provides you with the absolute best possible art buying experience out there. We believe buying original art should be exciting, fun, and incredibly easy. The art we present to you is from hand selected artists and galleries, affordable, and always of the highest quality.
You don’t have to be a Rockefeller to buy or understand art
Have you ever walked into an art gallery and felt like you didn’t belong there? Ever felt like art is only for the rich and famous? It’s all nonsense, so don’t believe the hype. 99% of us aren’t “art collectors”, but we know what we like when we see it. Buying art should cause smiles and immense joy, never anxiety. We believe so much in this philosophy that we back each and every purchase on Zatista 100%. If you are not completely satisfied with the work you bought, let us know and we’ll take it back. No questions asked. Its that simple.
Lobster Landing is a traditional looking lobster shack in the harbor of Clinton, Connecticut on Long Island Sound.
This is one of those “lucky shots”. Driving around with my parents, showing me some places I hadn’t been before – photography gives one great excuses to explore. Timing just happened to be perfect. I just love all the junk around this place and the sunset was perfect.
Buy A Print or Product of Lobster Landing
“Lobster Landing Sunset” is available in a variety of fine art, museum quality prints on paper, metal, acrylic, canvas and even wood surfaces as well as on products and gift items such as mugs, tote bags, throw pillows and more! See all of the options here.
Best Lobster Roll according the Shoreline Times which said “A perfect New England lunch doesn’t require much prep, and the ingredient list is so short even the most forgetful can remember it — lobster, butter, roll, lemon. But there’s one element that can’t be found at the store — lobster shack magic.”
Clinton’s Lobster Landing, readers’ pick for Best Lobster Roll, owned by Enea (who just goes by ‘Bacci’) and Cathie Bacci….The Baccis have owned the century-old shack for nearly 20 years and combine their Italian tradition of eating lobster warm, with melted butter and lemon, and thus began the Lobster Landing legend.
The lobster roll is the main attraction of course is the lobster roll, described by local author Mike Urban in his book “Lobster Shacks,” )as “…chock full of buttery, fresh-picked meat…loading up the oversize bun until the lobster crowns out of the top.”
Fine Art America Prints – When I decided to offer my photography and artwork to the general public as reproductions or prints I looked around at various vendors and settled on Fine Art America. I’ve ordered prints to display at gallery shows and to display in my own home.
My Experiences with Fine Art America Prints
I’ve ordered framed and matted prints. Prints rolled in a tube on rag paper as well as large metal prints. The quality has always been excellent and if there ever is problem, the 30 day money back guarantee is outstanding. Fine Art America will replace any problems.
With Fine Art America I can offer prints of any size including non-standard sizes. If you wish to have these matted and framed locally to save on shipping you can do this, although the matting and framing can get expensive and the options through Fine Art America are very reasonable for a custom framing job.
Standard Sized Prints On Fine Art America
In the past you could often only find non-standard print sizes on Fine Art America. Recently Fine Art America has added an option of choosing a standard size print from any of the images. 8×10, 11×14 etc. You can even get a vertical print from an horizontal print or visa versa. If you want to crop the image differently than the artist offers, you can now do this.
Very Large Prints from Fine Art America
I’ve sold a number of very, very large prints on Fine Art America. These two image in particular have been ordered at the maximum size of 40 x 60 inches. That is a huge print!
For some reason the largest prints purchase from my portfolio of fine art photography and artwork always seem to involve guns.
Metal Prints from Fine Art America
If you want a large, modern print, one of the least expensive prints you can get are the metal prints. With a traditional framed and matted print you are paying for a lot of custom work, a lot of labor. Metal prints are a simpler production, basically printed, trimmed and then a hanging part is added to the back. Less labor intensive so you save money.
The metal prints from Fine Art America are very competitively priced especially since everything needed to hand the prints is included. Some other places add on hanging accessories to the price. With Fine Art America its included. Metal prints offer a clean modern look with the artwork floating on the wall.
Shipping metal prints is also less expensive because they don’t weigh as much as a framed image. Any very large print going through the mail will be expensive to ship but you save on weight and metal prints are unlikely to be damaged in shipping.
Fine Art America Prints Quality
I’ve sold over 1,500 pieces of artwork through Fine Art America and have only had an handful of returns for some reason or another (people changed their minds or didn’t like it for some reason or another). That’s less than 1 percent of returns and the buyers got their money back. I think that says a lot about the printer that Fine Art America uses.
If your looking for a good video blog on fine art photography, check out Ted Forbes’s video series “The Art of Photography”
The Art of Photography is an online video series I’ve been producing since 2008. I make daily videos on all aspects of photography including history, process, technique and equipment. – Ted Forbes
What I like about this series is that its not equipment focused. So many camera magazines, online videos and websites concentrate on equipment reviews and arguments over which lens is the sharpest or which brand is the best. They don’t talk about the art of photography at all.
Why? Because talking about art and the real essence of artistry is hard. Talking about technical aspects of a piece of technology is easy. Its just numbers and measurements and its all about buying equipment and keeping the sponsors and advertisers happy.
Ted talks about fine art, history, the art world, photographers and what it means to create a body of work rather then a collection of lucky shots. He talks about approaching photography with purpose rather then just showing off the latest equipment purchase.
Photography is an artistic medium used to express the vision of the artist behind the camera. The brands, product reviews, lens tests, opinions, newest gadget, software, filters etc don’t mean squat to the vision of the photographer other then they are tools in the tool box used to bring about the end result.
Wikipedia – Fine art photography is photography created in accordance with the vision of the artist as photographer. Fine art photography stands in contrast to representational photography, such as photojournalism, which provides a documentary visual account of specific subjects and events, literally re-presenting objective reality rather than the subjective intent of the photographer; and commercial photography, the primary focus of which is to advertise products or services.
“Eventually I discovered for myself the utterly simple prescription for creativity: be intensely yourself. Don’t try to be outstanding; don’t try to be a success; don’t try to do pictures for others to look at—just please yourself.”– Ralph Steiner
Driving around Prince Edward Island after dinner with a car full of teenagers, I spotted this row of beautiful old antique tractors lit with incredible light from the setting sun. Now in these situations I have to make a calculation in my head within seconds. First is there anyone behind me before I slam on the brakes, second is there any where to pull over and third am I ready for the complaints from the passengers who really just want to get to our destination.
Believe me there are so many times I’m happy to ignore the protests! In photography, the photographer does rely on a lot of serendipitous moments but these moments favor the prepared. Its all about always looking for photograph opportunities and then having the skills to be able to pull the image off.
Make Your Own Luck
1. Learning to see images
2. Always having a camera on hand
3. Practicing constantly
4. Giving yourself opportunities
5. Returning to locations
6. Taking advantage of good light
7. Working quickly and with purpose
8. Making not taking photographs
9. Putting yourself in front of interesting subjects.
10. Walking for driving down that unknown street.
The lighthouse photograph above came about over years of revisiting the same area. Conditions were “lucky” on this occasion of going back to the same area and exploring it thoroughly to capture the best light, the best clouds, the best angle etc. More hard work than luck. The lucky part is when the sun and clouds cooperated.
Luck and Photography
It has been said that photography is the art form where luck matters most. True enough. And anyone can get that one lucky shot in their life time. But when you look over the career of a great photographer and start seeing one “lucky” shot after another, you start to realize there has to be a bit of planning behind all of those lucky shots.
This “storm chaser” shot below was very lucky. Probably lucky I didn’t get killed. But I didn’t go chasing a wall cloud, the storm came to us. I took this shot from the porch of a little cottage we rented on Prince Edward Island. Lucky, although I was prepared with my tripod and camera equipment.
MOST PEOPLE ARE NOT skilled photographers, but if you’ve taken enough pictures in your life, you’ve surely turned up some good ones — a snapshot or two that made you think, “Maybe I have a knack for this.” – Boston Globe
Lucky Shots Take Time
People just starting out in photography look at great photos and have a desire to create the same amazing photograph right away. The problem is looking at a small sample of a photographers lifetime of work. Keep in mind that you are looking at the best of a photographer’s portfolio over a long period of time. Luck will present itself within a long time frame. Play blackjack, roulette, the lottery or slot machines long enough and you will win at some point.
Same with photography. Invest the time and energy to create your own luck and it will happen.
Sometimes luck comes in the form of a vintage car parked in the exact right spot at the exact time you happen to be there with your camera.
The beginner photographer approaches a scene, raises their camera and “takes” the picture. A seasoned photographer “works” the scene, studying all the possibilities of composition from various angles. Unless you work out all of the possibilities of a scene, you don’t come away with the best possibility. Often this requires revisiting a scene more than once, perhaps in different seasons.
This old barn complex in Windsor, Vermont is eye catching when driving by with its complex arrangement of buildings, weathered boards, red painted doors etc but capturing the feeling of the place is different than snapping a shot from the road. You have do actually engage in the landscape and explore the various angles and arrangements of the composition. Bottom line is to get into the scene and make an photograph rather than take a snapshot.
Below are some photographs of this area taken at different times of the year as well as some thoughts by other photographers on how to work a scene in photography.
“Making a picture just right takes time, even when the thing you’re photographing isn’t moving. Instead, you do the moving — closer, not so close — change lenses, commit to a tripod, micro compose some detail, step back, reconsider, recompose, repeat. And when it looks right it also feels right — just so.” — Sam Abell, from The Life of a Photograph
“The compositional dance is about figuring out a way to move you and your camera, which in turn moves the smallest of details inside your viewfinder for maximum visual impact. You can make use of all photographic techniques to create the atmosphere or emotion you are feeling and want to transmit. It’s about recognizing and understanding what it is that attracted you to the subject matter in the first place, and then determining — through concentration and instinct — how best to communicate those feelings through the photograph.” – Steve Simon
“We don’t always have the time or opportunity to revisit a given scene many times in order to make ourselves happy; however, we should at least be convinced that we have produced the best possible image given the limitations of our own visit. This means that even if a scene is immediately interesting/ arresting, the first image may not necessarily be the best one. Sometimes our instincts are right, sometimes our timing is lucky, and it is; more often than not, there’s always something to be improved.
If you take a look at the work of great photographers immediately before and after a famous image – the Magnum Contact Sheets book is highly recommended for this because it puts the chosen frame in context of what happened immediately before/ after by showing the rest of the frames on the roll – you’ll see that they all have something in common: they spend a lot of time experimenting with variations on the same basic idea, exploring options, and usually end fairly soon after getting the shot they want.” – Ming Thein
“If you’re walking around a city or village and you stop to take a photo, that means something caught your eye (enough to make you stop and photograph it, right?). Don’t just take one shot, shrug your shoulders, and move on. Remember, something made you stop, so there’s probably something there, and taking one quick snapshot probably won’t uncover it.
Your job as a photographer is to “work that scene” and find out what it was that captured your attention. The first step is simply to slow down—stop, look around for a moment, and see what it was that drew your eye in the first place. Was it the color, was it a doorway, an archway, was it some little feature, or something big? If you can figure it out, then you’ll know what to shoot, but more often than not, we can’t exactly describe what it was that made us stop and shoot, but it definitely was something.
Your job is to find it, and to work that scene by trying these techniques: (1) Shoot the area with different focal lengths—shoot a few shots in really wide angle, then try 100mm, then zoom in tight, and see what you find. Stop and look at your LCD to see if you’re getting close. If you see something that looks like it has possibilities, then (2) try changing your viewpoint. Shoot it from a very low angle (get down on one knee) or try shooting it from above (look for stairs you can shoot from or a rooftop angle). This can make the shot come alive. If that looks really good and you’re getting close to nailing the shot, then (3) try varying your white balance (try changing it to Cloudy and see if having the shot look warmer looks better, or try Shade for a warmer look yet). Try all these things (work the scene) and my guess is one of those shots will bring a big smile to your face.” – Scott Kelby
bicycle, often called a bike or cycle, is a human-powered, pedal-driven, single-track vehicle, having two wheels attached to a frame, one behind the other. A bicycle rider is called a cyclist, or bicyclist.
Bicycles were introduced in the 19th century in Europe and as of 2003, more than 1 billion have been produced worldwide, twice as many as the number of automobiles that have been produced.They are the principal means of transportation in many regions. They also provide a popular form of recreation, and have been adapted for use as children’s toys, general fitness, military and police applications, courier services, and bicycle racing.
The basic shape and configuration of a typical upright, or safety bicycle, has changed little since the first chain-driven model was developed around 1885. But many details have been improved, especially since the advent of modern materials and computer-aided design. These have allowed for a proliferation of specialized designs for many types of cycling.
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