Creating and Displaying My Art

Diwali Fireworks, Printed - Austin, Texas

Diwali Fireworks, Printed – Austin, Texas

I’m sure there can be a lot of debate about what qualifies as art. For example, if I digitally enhance a photograph that I shot, with tools that simulate traditional oil paint brush strokes, and then print it on canvas, does this quality as art? I’m not sure. And, I really don’t care, I suppose.

Clearly, there is some creativity involved both creating the photograph and to a lesser extent, applying the digital brush strokes to get an effect that I like. But, what is more important to me is making this piece, getting it printed and displaying it on my wall. It’s in a prominent place on the second floor that I pass by, multiple times a day. I see it and it makes me smile.

For years I’ve made a lot of photographs, some of which I’ve shared on this blog. But, having a digital representation of my photos, while convenient, lacks something. It seems too clean, tidy and virtual. When the slab of glass is turned off, whether it be a smartphone or a computer, it’s as through those photographs don’t exist. An unrelenting expanse of black that only comes to life with electricity.

I’m trying to change this. It started last year as I started printing my photos in various ways. This year, I want to further expand on this effort. I also want to branch out from just traditional photography. If using additional tools to create an Art-ish image, better matches what I envisioned, all the better. Today’s printed piece is my first serious attempt.

Fireworks, Diwali 2018 - Austin, Texas

You might recognize the original photograph, which I first featured on this blog post. While it’s colorful for a photograph, I always imagined an even more festive and colorful image.

Diwali Fireworks - Austin, Texas

I used Topaz Studio software to create this effect and amp up the colors. While there is a point of ridiculousness for saturated photos, paintings or even simulated paintings don’t seem to suffer from the same restrictions. It’s as though the increased abstractness gives permission to become more daring in color.

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7 thoughts on “Creating and Displaying My Art

  1. Excellent photo and use of Topaz. I have a great deal of enjoyment doing the same sorts of things…..felt vaguely guilty at first, now I don’t give a shit because I sometimes really like the result. Which is what its all about, eh?

    1. Thank you, docwillblog. My thoughts exactly. I’m really happy with what Topaz created, even if it automates some of the craft of painting.

      1. the automated part is often seen as a problem. As long as it is clearly a photograph then we are just using a different form of darkroom than available previously. Remember Ansel Adams spent a great deal of time in his darkroom, too😇.

      2. Hi docwillblog, I know the work of digital culling is way less work than the darkroom. Still, it’s a lot of unappealing work for me.

        I’ll get though it all, someday. If I only didn’t shoot so much.

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