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Creative photography: a modern contemporary art form

by Editor Miro Susta 
Edited and published by Yvette Depaepe, the 14th of July 2023


Creative photography is a technique that reflects the artistic vision of the photographer.


'Red' by Axel Brand


Photography has taken many years to earn its place in the art world, along with painting, architecture, poetry, music, theatre and sculpture.

When the first photographs emerged, they were not taken very seriously; due to technical limitations, photography could not claim satisfactory quality or artistic value, even though the first generation of photographers had already tried to enliven the composition of their images with interesting techniques and approaches.


'HotNews' by Marcel Egger


Several periods can be distinguished in the history of photographing. Even at the beginning of the development of photographic technique, it did not differ significantly from painting, i.e., photographers tried to transfer the techniques of painting they were familiar with to the photographic form.


'Liberté ď Expression' by Christophe Kiciak


The exact date cannot evidently be given, but historians of photographic art note a significant event that took place in 1856. At that time, the Swede Oscar Gustav Reilander (1813-1875), Victorian art photographer and expert in photomontage, made a unique combination print from thirty different retouched negatives. His photograph entitled “Two Ways of Life,” seemed to describe an ancient saga of two young people's entry into life. One of the main characters in the photograph turns to the various values of virtue, charity, religion and crafts, while the other, on the other hand, is carried away by such sinful pleasures of life as gambling, wine and immorality.


Two Ways of Life by Oscar Gustav Reilander


This allegoric photograph by Reilander immediately became widely known. And after an exhibition in Manchester, Queen Victoria herself acquired a photograph of Reylander for Prince Albert's collection.


*** by Constantin Shestopalov


The Reylander cause continued with talented English artist and photographer Henry Peach Robinson (1830-1901), who became famous for his composite photograph "Fading Away" made from five negatives. This art photograph shows a girl dying in a chair, her mother and sister standing sadly over her, and her father looking out of an open window.


Fading Away by Henry Peach Robinson


This image was criticized for distorting the truth, but nevertheless became widely known. It was immediately acquired by the English royal court, and the crown prince even gave Robinson a permanent warrant of payment for every print of any such photo. Robinson himself became a leading proponent of so-called figurative photography in England and Europe.


'Black Widow' by Martina Nemcekova EP



'Zig the Zag' by Howard Ashton-Jones


This movement was dominant in the photography until the first decade of the 20th century. Figurative photography employed a variety of pictorial effects and techniques.


'Tanya' by Zachar Rise


A special chapter in art photography is occupied by the nude, the artistically captured nudity that has accompanied our history for over 30,000 years, since the depiction of a small statue of Venus, the fertility Goddess, took a prominent place.


'Venus' by Ruth Franke



'Shape' by Daniel Springgay


The erotic art enjoyed its greatest prosperity in ancient Greece, where artists depicted the perfect body as an ideal of beauty.


'Sasha' by Zachar Rise


With the advent of Christianity, her artistic depiction was limited to representations of Adam and Eve.


'Eve' by Christophe Kiciak


Since the Renaissance, however, acts in art have become popular again, thanks, among other things, to several allegorical-mythological conceptions.


'Meeting the Goddess Medusa' by Ineke Mighorst


At the same time, the interest in the anatomy of masters such as Leonardo and Michelangelo contributed to the creation of magnificent works.


'Firenze' by Manuel Gayoso


In the Renaissance, the male model tended to be predominant, but with the advent of the Baroque, there was a renewed interest in depicting the female body.


'Jovan 18' by Anders Kustås



'falling veil' by Rafael L. Bardají


Nudity was a reference to divine origins and captured the contemporary aesthetic ideal of physical beauty as well as other human values. In contemporary art, depictions of nudity increasingly deliberately blur the thin line between art and pornography.


'The touch' by Franky De Meyer


For some photographers, the search for an aesthetic, photogenic pose prevails; for others, the intention is exactly the opposite, ignoring any idealization of the woman, revealing her vulnerability.


n/t by David Dubnitskiy


It is also important to state that photography could not leave the footprints of painting for a long time. However, the development of photography as an art form in the last century was largely due to regular exhibitions, at which, alongside simple, beautiful images, viewers could see interesting photographs that deserved the appellation 'works of art'.


'Gertrude’s Critique' by Tom Gore


One of the first such international exhibitions was the modestly titled 291 Gallery of Photography, opened by an American photographer and promoter of art photography Alfred Stieglitz in New York in 1905. It was a true exhibition of contemporary art, with the names of famous artists on a par with photographers.


***** by Zurab Getsatdze


In the 1920s and 1930s, a new era also began, with the style of photography changing in favour of documentation and reporting.

A new generation of photographers emerged who made their daily imprint in the history of their country and the world through reportorial and documentary photography.


'historical apocalypse' by Dmitry Laudin


Photography became a carrier of a certain historical truth, a reflection of real events, and in these years communities and associations of photographers began to emerge, seeking to turn photography into a self-sustainable art form.


'Agra sunset' by Lou Urlings


In the 1960s and 1970s, photography again became considered as an independent work of art. This is the era of photorealism and daring experiments with different photographic technologies and different artistic techniques.


'Serenissima' by Michel Romaggi


From this period onwards, all directions of the photography that had been on the fringes of public attention were finally given the right to be presented as an independent value in art.


'Grand Mosque' by Hanaa Turkistani


There appeared new photographic genres in which the author's intention and the photographer's creative vision became the key moment. Well-known photographers of the time began to touch upon such iconic social issues as social inequality, poverty, child labour abuse and many others in their work.


'The Excavation' by Ali Khataw


Another new revolution in the photographic industry is the transition from analogue (film) to digital technology. The digital imaging format allowed photographers to move away from a simple mirror image of the reality around them.


'Fairy tale' by Miro Susta


With the advent of digital cameras, computers and graphic editors, the photographer was able to reshape his images so that the viewer had the opportunity to become familiar with the creative vision of the image maker and immerse themselves in his surreal world.


'Light in the dark' by Inge Schuster


Although photography has become a mass phenomenon nowadays, selectivity and a specific personal "vision" are still important for the art of photography, allowing a photographer to use photographic means to create a true work of art.

But in the heart of the photography art there is still a photographer who can put a part of his inner world into the image, so that the photograph "grows" with new emotions and reveals the talent of the photographer himself.


'Click' by Roxana Labagnara


Photography today is more than just a way to capture an important moment in life. Thanks to a huge amount of high-tech equipment and a special program, everyone has been given the opportunity to make shooting their hobby.


'Cold winter afternoon in the city' by Yvette Depaepe


Art photography as an artistic form is quite versatile. Even a beginner will be able to show imagination at will. Moreover, everyone will find their favourite genre.


'Dawn at White Pocket' by Wanghan Li


Finally, I would like to express my gratitude and praise to all the 1x photographers who have made their beautiful photographs available for this article.
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congratulations to all the other artists for such beautiful works! Many thank for your nice words
Many thanks Zurab
What an honor! Thank you Ivette, congratulations to all the other artists for such beautiful works!
Thank you Roxana
I have questions about the latest contest and I'm not sure where I can ask ? Anyone?
You must ask Yvette.
A very educational article and stunning photo collection, thank you very much, Miro!
Many thanks for nice words of praise Yanyan.
Great article and stunning photography selection, Miro!
Thank you very much dear Ludmilla, nice to see that you like it.
Very insightful article and great selection of images. Thank you!
Thank you very much Aidong for your praise.
Beautiful images , lovely article, congratulations Miro
Many thanks for your nice words of appreciation dear Anita.
Great article, Miro!
Great thanks Lauren's, I'm happy to see that you like it.
Fantastic gallery, congrats Miro!
Many thanks Giuseppe
Excellent piece of photographic curation. My compliments Miro!
Thank you very much for your nice words of praise dear Ali.
Excellent article with the wonderful collection of the beautiful and superb works! Appreciate your works and your efforts to do it!
Thank you for lovely words of appreciation Wanghan
Brilliant article. Educational, informative and versatile. Thx Miro.
Many thanks for your nice words of praise dear Iris
Miharu PRO
A wonderful artistic world that resonates with sensibility. Congratulations to the artists for these wonderful works. And thanks to Miro for the introduction.
Many thank for your nice words of praise dear Miharu
great article Miro... and great photos as well!
Many thanks Alberto I'm happy to that you like it
An informative article and and excellent collection of images. Very creative and taking in a wide range of genres.
Thank you very much Francisco
This article, is inspired in every way ,a high creativity is shown .. thank you for choosing my photo in the article ^^)
Many thanks for your appreciation and many thanks for making your photo available for this article
Congratulations and many thanks Miro for this very interesting article, and thank you for including my photo, it's an honour. Best regards!
Many thanks for nice appreciation and thank you for your photo contribution
Really enjoyed both the visuals and the written word. Very nicely done!
Thank you Sheena, I'm happy to see that you like it.
Sorry for misspelling your name Sheona
Cool. Extremely nice article.
Thank you very much Roland
Thank you for this very interesting article and thank you also for choosing one of mine among all these beautiful photos.
Many thanks Michel and also thank you for your photo contribution.
Thanks for this well written overview of creative photography through times! And such an honour to see one of my own featured among these giants!
Many thanks for your wonderful words of praise Franky, and thank you for your lovely photo contribution.
Fine article, Miro !!! Thanks a lot and too for selecting one of my images :-)
Thank you a lot dear Yvette, and also thank you for making your lovely photo available for this article.
Thanks to all involved so well selected and blended together makes me want to take my clothes off and run around the garden shouting Yippee.....
Go for it, Daniel ... Thanks for the big smile !
This article, with an inspired presentation and beautifully illustrated, delighted me. Creative photography is a magical universe, magic that results from the brilliant photos inserted. Congratulations!!
Many many thanks for your wonderful words dear Gabriela, I'm happy to see that you like this article. Have a very nice week.
A great analysis
Many thanks Eduardo