Am I a Landscape photographer? #4

Views From Above - Abstract Landscapes

Part 1

iphone image from Aeroplane- Malles Venosta, Italy

Alvin Langdon Coburn compared the status of photography with that of painting saying that ‘it is about time photography goes beyond the mimetic representation of the world’.

An abstract landscape is not a literal documentation and representation of the landscape/cityscape scene. It is rather an interpretation of it according to the photographer’s /artist’s state of mind and intentions. Quite often the form, colours, shapes and patterns of the image will be dominant and the emphasis will be on them only but they can also be accompanied by a strong concept that supports the work behind their formal character.  Eva Kalpadaki

When I travel I love a window seat and flying is no exception. I always love to look at the world moving by at high speed, but from a plane, the view is mesmerising.  Cities, countryside, mountains, sea or a veil of thick cotton-wool cloud become flattened abstract patterns. It’s not often that I take pictures with my phone, but this time I had to record what I saw.

Once back at home, the views from the plane became the starting point for my abstract landscape. I began playing…

Glass paints are beautiful and fun to play with. So with the only 3 colours I possessed - Green, yellow and magenta and a pile of acetate I went to work. I painted, blowed, dripped and ran the colours together. Then sprinkled salt over the top of some, added white spirits to others and generally got my hands well and truly dirty. The initial idea was to reinterpret the landscape as if I was actually flying over it, but the vibrant colours that were drying before me were a far cry...

24 Hours later my images were dry and ready to be scanned. Despite the beautiful array of colours, this was not what I wanted so I put a cyanotype filter over them and I was almost there. With the addition of a randomly placed glass eye I re-scanned the images and I finally had my abstract landscapes. ‘Views From Above’.

Part 2 is a completely different approach to this. Set in a quarry...