I like this picture, a lot! In fact, it is one of my favourites. And yet it was created from a mistake. I was actually trying to photograph a cobweb, but my little compact was set on Auto and was unable to detect the web.
I tried every Photoshop trick I know (that doesn’t take long!) in an attempt to ‘find the web’, all to no avail. But then I realised I had something far more interesting. I zoomed in on part of the image and this abstract was the result.
So what attracted me? Why do I find this picture so satisfying?
The obvious magnet was the strong contrast between the blues and the golds and the patterns they created. There seemed to be a tension between the two – the calm of the blue and the energy of the gold. It was something akin to night time on a camp site at a pop festival!
I also felt a spatial awareness – a sense of environment. I could physically move around.
The association with music intrigued me. I wondered what music might be used to accompany the picture – in the manner of film music – and acknowledged that the viewer’s perception of the picture could be influenced by the choice of music. For example, Debussy’s Clair de lune would reinforce the mood of night time stillness; the sinister, threatening mood of an impending attack on an enemy could be suggested by an extract from Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring; a gradual change from the one mood to the other by using Ravel’s Bolero, and so on.
By definition an abstract image does not give specific answers. It invites the viewer to use whatever connections, experiences or strategies he/she finds helpful. I’ve suggested a few – pattern, contrast, colour, spatial awareness, sense of environment, sound, association with music, emotional response. Above all, abstracts don’t have to tell a story.
[Use the link to read the responses of Elena and Gigi to the original post: Abstract 128]