abstract photos

How to take abstract photos

It’s time to have some fun and get out of the daily grind that you may not even know about. It’s time to create images based on color, light, and emotion without worrying about sharpness and detail.

This photography article will give you 6 smart tips on how to take abstract photos!

Abstract (adjective): expressing ideas and emotions with elements like color and lines without the intention of creating a realistic picture.

You already have all the tools you need to do this (a camera or even a smartphone), so let’s look at some ways to create impressive abstract images.

How to take abstract photos

Techniques for taking abstract photos

Move your camera.

The easiest way to create an image full of color and lines is to blur everything. For most of us, this is a great approach. I can hear you exclaiming, “I can move my camera and not worry about its stability? Oh, heavens!”.

All of these techniques are revealed by experience, but I can give some tips on where to start.

The first thing is to slow the shutter speed down to 1/10th of a second or more. As with panoramic blur, this is where the fun begins. You can use Shutter Priority mode, or if you know how to set your camera to Aperture Priority or Program mode, use those to get the same shutter speed. A low ISO setting like 100 or lower will also help you with this.

Second, look for subjects in the shadows. This long shutter speed will require a small amount of light, otherwise the picture will be overexposed.

Third, take a few test shots by moving the camera in one direction and out the other. I know this sounds like bad advice and very simplistic, but that’s how it starts. You have to see what happens to the scene in front of you as you move to one side or the other. Then start moving in a circle or in random order.

Sometimes straight line objects look best when you work with their structure and direction. Sometimes round objects (flowers, for example) look great in a chaotic rotation. This is your official permission to leave them out of any frame in the photograph. Some images will be unfortunate, to say the least. But you might actually get eye-catching shots.

Move the subject.

I didn’t like the markings on the train cars until I realized the magic of random colors moving at 40 miles per hour (65 km/h).

Now I often look for colored objects with my eyes just for their color. The shape, the object or the purpose may not be what I want, but if I can use the color and make it move just the way I want it to…I can convey the essence of that color.

It’s somewhat similar to the technique of painting with light, but without an object emitting light. Think about what objects you can move and look for bold colors.

WARNING: Be careful with white, yellow, and other very bright colors. Their properties are such that they fill the sensor with too much information and crowd out any other color in the picture.

Remove Context.

A zoom lens will be your best friend in this case. Wide-angle shots, even with just enough blur, often allow us to define the scene rather than focus on color and emotion. Abstract images, on the other hand, are helped by what you can’t recognize.

The more you pick out individual details, the more abstract the image becomes!

Shoot through objects.

I’m still seriously experimenting with shooting through objects, but there’s a lot of interesting stuff here. It’s great to have a way to hold your subjects or mount them on a studio light stand. Or start with everyday subjects and work through colored glass, glass block, or even apply different gels or liquids (Vaseline, olive oil, etc.) to clear glass or organic glass.

Multi-exposure for abstract photos

Using the multi-exposure technique sometimes leaves too many original, recognizable subjects. I’ve determined my Canon’s medium settings to work with combination shots. If you want to be intimidated, start with dark settings and prepare to take lots of test shots.

My method is to take one shot mostly in focus. Then I take two more at different angles out of focus. Sometimes this results in just a soft focus, and so such an image cannot be considered abstract enough. That’s why I prefer to use a zoom and deprive the subject of context.

How to take abstract photos

Post-processing as a platform for experimentation

You know how people tend to complain about the large amount of post-processing in some photographers’ work? It’s time to push the boundaries and have some fun. You can soften the scene to make it even more airy.

Or you can try different versions of the same image, but in a completely different color presentation (in this case, I just changed the White Balance and Hue temperature in Lightroom).

Once the image gets into your computer, let yourself do whatever you want with it!


What I love most about abstract photography is that it plays on everyone’s “I like it, but I don’t know why” nerve.  I can analyze each of these images and tell you why I chose it, but in the end it doesn’t matter. It’s about creating art for art’s sake. It’s about going back to the basics of engaging art. It’s about being surprised by what you see on an LCD monitor, as long as you break a few of the rules you’re used to so carefully adhering to.

How do I take abstract photos on my iPhone?

Abstract photography is a form of art that doesn’t depict anything in the world. It is a reflection of a photographer’s inner self, which can be influenced by their mood, their surroundings, or even the time of day.
There are many apps and techniques that can help you take abstract photos with your iPhone in a hurry. You can use apps like Camera+, ProCamera, and VSCO Cam to create abstract photos with your iPhone. You can also use the iOS 11 Slo-Mo feature to create an abstract video with your phone.
Abstract photography is a form of art that doesn’t depict anything in the world. It is a reflection of a photographer’s inner self, which can be influenced by their mood, their surroundings, or even the time of day.

What does the photographer do to get an abstract photo?

Abstract photography is an art form that has been around since the 1800s. The main goal of abstract photography is to create a visual representation of the artist’s feelings, thoughts, and emotions.
The photographer does not need to do anything specific to get an abstract photo. It can be done by taking a photo in their natural surroundings or just by doing some light editing on it.

What are 2 key elements of a good abstract photo?

An abstract photo is a type of photography that focuses on the composition of shapes and lines in the image. The result is a photo that has no literal representation and can be seen in many different ways.
Abstract photography is often used to stimulate the viewer’s imagination or show them something they may have not seen before. Abstract photos are generally composed of abstract shapes, textures, patterns, or colors with no recognizable objects or people in them.

Author: Abstract