Fine art Photography is generally interpreted as using photography in accordance with the vision of the artist. There is a lot that goes into doing that. Just like a pigment artist might choose which media to use to bring their vision to life, a photographer will perhaps first choose a lens, as the characteristics of lenses impact the final image. She will then frame her shot, finding the angle that makes the most of perspective and light, choosing apertures, film speed and exposure time. In the case of taking large and sometimes fast-moving creatures as I love to do, much of that must happen before your subject enters the scene. Having sussed out the stage, you wait for your player to hit the sweet spot.
Then, rather than painting on the canvas with pigment, the digital photographer records the elements of her image through the effect of light on a sensor. This is only the start of creating the photograph however, the physics of light on film or sensors, for the camera does not equate to a human eye. In order to recreate what the artist saw then the image must be adjusted. This is a process as old as photography itself, only now we use computer-based programs instead of chemicals and dark rooms. This may be as simple as adjusting the exposure and hues or it may involve combining several images, blending them seamlessly together and deleting or obscuring unwanted elements. The pigment artist has the luxury of doing this from the start (though obviously depending on the media changes can be made as a painting progresses) but the photographer must work with what was captured at the time. The photographer works with her tools, manipulating the image, from the moment she picks up the camera to the point she sits back in her chair , looks at her screen and sighs. - “Yes, this is what I ‘saw’, this conveys what I felt, this tells the story of what I experienced.”
Photoartistry in my opinion, takes it just a step further, confusing the lines between what was captured and what is now created by the artist’s vision. It is not so much about bringing to life what was your vision at the time, but rather seeing a new vision emerge, one you didn’t anticipate. It’s more akin to a sculptor running their hands over a chunk of marble and feeling the sculpture that wants to emerge; to working with timber, with all its grain and knots that must be accommodated and contribute. Works that were quite representative and real, can become completely abstract, or take on a dream like quality.