Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #74: Abstract

Abstract art is uniquely modern. It is a fundamentally romantic response to modern life – rebellious, individualistic, unconventional, sensitive, irritable. ~Robert Motherwell

This week we invite you to break the rules and go beyond the traditional realistic image of an object, scene, or element.  For Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #74, we are going “Abstract.”

An abstract image creates a sense of mystery because it goes beyond what we normally see in the real world.  It makes viewers ask questions and use their imagination.

Here’s an example:  What is it?

Chihuly Glass with Topaz Filter Effects

This looks like a ball of fire, but in fact, it’s glass.  This huge monumental sculpture on display at Kew Gardens in London was created by the artist Dale Chihuly.  I added a filter effect to highlight the twisting, curling pieces of glass and the bold colors.

Even abstract shapes must have a likeness.~Willem de Kooning

Here’s another image:  Where was this shot taken?

In the Gallery, New York, NY

At first glance, this photo may seem mysterious.  It’s filled with long colored panels and geometric shapes.  In fact, this image was shot in an art gallery in New York.  If you look closely, you can see the security guard and 2 visitors standing by a window in the background.

Abstraction didn’t have to be limited to a kind of rectilinear geometry or even a simple curve geometry… In other words, you could tell a story with the shapes. ~Frank Stella

Here’s my next shot:  What do you see?

The Grace Building Abstract, New York, NY

Do you see rectangles within rectangles?  Or skyscrapers?  Or both?   This is what went through my mind one day when I was standing in front of the Grace Building in Manhattan.  I shot this image looking up at the building.  It was a dizzying view.

The longer you look at an object, the more abstract it becomes, and, ironically, the more real. ~Lucian Freud

Abstract shapes are present in architecture, but also in nature–as you can see here in this shot of cactii.  Sometimes when you get close to an object, you can see a new world of abstract shapes and designs.

Cacti, Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids, MI




















This week’s challenge is your chance to break all the rules and go “Abstract.”  Feel free to go beyond the traditional realistic image of an object, scene, or element.  Take a photo of anything that catches your eye and allows you to express your artistic view of the world.  You can also focus on details which are normally ignored and make your viewers use their imaginations.  In your post, include a link to this post. (Links from the Reader are not working correctly.) Use the Lens-Artists tag to help us find you. For instructions on how to join us, click here.

Thanks to all of you who participated in Tina’s “Cold” challenge last week.  After reading all your posts, I needed to put on a sweater!

Have You Seen These?

We also send our heartfelt wishes to Deb Whitman of Twenty Four and all our Australian blogger friends who have experienced weeks of brutal fires that are ravaging vast areas in the Australian Outback.  We hope the rains will come soon and bring an end to the destruction.

PLEASE NOTE:  Because Ann-Christine is traveling, Tina will host next week’s challenge #75 at Travels and Trifles.

As always, Amy, Tina, Ann-Christine, and I thank you for your continued support of our photo challenge.

247 replies »

  1. I really connected with this article. Many of times when I’m waiting for someone or for time to pass, I will stare at something until its appearance seems to change. Really enjoyed your post. Will definitely take this challenge upon myself!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very interesting topic!!!

    And thank you, Patti, you’ve helped me with my next post, I didn’t know how to present the pile of photos I took in the Caves of the Drach (Mallorca)…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Cee! I enjoyed your post as well. To tell you the truth, it was challenging for me, too. But I think I learned something from it. That’s always a good thing! 🙂


  3. Wow Patti. That glass could be anything. It’s stunning. And I love the way the sky scraper looms over you.
    Nature is full of patterns that make quite abstract forms in close up. The cacti are a superb example of this.
    Thanks for the challenge. Isn’t it wonderful how something new challenges our view of ourselves. I thought abstract art wasn’t for me but there have been some wonderful images posted that have changed my outlook, happily. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Wendy. Thank you! It’s very true what you say about abstract art. It surprised me that I like it, too. I’m really enjoying the responses and I’m getting great ideas at the same time. I hope you join us!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A wonderful challenge, Patti – making us think and act again…so looking forward to seeing all responses as well. Your gallery is great! I especially adore the Chihuly. Wish I could have been there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you’re joining us, Hammad. I’m delighted you like my abstracts, too. It’s been a stretch for me, but I’m enjoying exploring this type of photography. I’ll look at your post next…

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Patti. While I adore your cacti and the other photos, your Chihuly grabbed my attention. As the page was loading slowly on my monitor from the top down, about a quarter of the way in, I said to myself that looks like something by Chuhuly. So, you can imagine my surprise. Lovely choice! Here‘s my nostalgic submission. This was a fledgling Great Blue Heron when that photo was taken; he was a mere three weeks out of the nest. I am nostalgic for that time six years ago: babsjeheron.wordpress.com/2019/12/08/peace-on-earth-goodwill-from-great-blue-herons-not-art-nbr-23/
    Keep up the outstanding work you and the other Lens Artists do!
    Best, Babsje


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