What is Surreal Photography?

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Kaz-D's avatar
By Kaz-D
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What is Surreal Photography?

:thumb112456338::thumb152448157: the sentinel by lauren-rabbit the Creation of the Wallpaper by makowina Life ain't a tv show by TotoRino Water Colours by kriterijus

Surreal Photography can often be blurred with Conceptual - therefore Shalora - the Conceptual Gallery Moderator has shared this:

"Surreal photography would be more about creating a world or image which goes beyond the physical world as we know it. It usually shows something which would be impossible in real life or tampers with the line defining what is real and what is imaginary. Surreal = beyond the real."

I think personally that this sums up Surreal Photography! Surreal Photography often involves regular compositions which have been altered by obscuring something or changing angles and perspectives and so on. The lighting and exposures are often played with to create ghostly forms and abstract shapes. Hence the link with Abstract Photography.

Surrealists on Deviantart

lauren-rabbit has a fine example of a surrealist gallery here at deviantart. Her work challenges the normal whilst providing surroundings and views that we are all familiar with. I often find myself accepting the normal surroundings of her work and then being startled into realising that all is not as it seems - for example below.

still by lauren-rabbit

Man Ray

Man Ray was a famous surrealist of the 1900's and you can visit the www.manraytrust.com/ (Man Ray Image Gallery) to see more examples of his work. However here on Deviantart I've found some reconstructions of his more famous work:

The Red Violin by TattooedToothFairy Man Ray Homage by mopho-to:thumb68205601:

Surreal Photography and YOU

Surrealism allows you to create things that are ordinarily only seen by your mind. It's an excuse to get those ideas into action under the umbrella of the world of Surreal. It's a great chance to let your eye see the things that you envision. There's no right or wrong when it comes down to it because Surrealism is what you make it. Experiment with lighting, shadows, levels, backgrounds and movement to capture Surreal Photograhy at its finest.


:bulletblue: It's important to recognise that heavily manipulated deviations belong in Photo-Manipulation rather than Photography.

:bulletblue: Look carefully at the piece of work and consider whether the amount of effort that went into taking the shot is more than the after efforts of editing the image. If this is the case then you know that this work belongs in Photography as Post Processing is allowed.

:bulletblue: Keep in mind that alot of manipulation can occur whilst a shot is being set-up or taken. This is what surreal photography is all about.

Surreal Versus Abstract

:bulletblue: Surreal Photography gives you more of an idea of what lies behind the image whilst still challenging your norms and understanding.

:bulletblue: It rarely involves a small focused part of something, instead focusing on set-up rooms and places.

:bulletblue: It can quite often be photography in action - capturing motion and movement to create a surreal effect.

Remember that there are blurred boundaries between Abstract and Surreal aswell as carefully defined ones. There's no hugely right or wrong answer when it comes down to categorising your work in relation to this gallery. As long as the idea is there that it is either Abstract or Surreal (there are elements of both in many deviations) you can move on from there. Feel free to note me if you're not sure!

Finally, check the below article link for information about Abstract Photography. If you have a gallery that features abstract or surreal work please contact me to arrange an interview!!

news.deviantart.com/article/12… (What is Abstract Photography?)

© 2010 - 2021 Kaz-D
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Shalora's avatar
:D I didn't know that you had actually quoted me for this.... I just found out from someone who quoted what I wrote you and I was wondering how they found out what I had told you, word for work. lol
Kaz-D's avatar
I'm sorry I thought I'd noted you when I did the article - in fact I swear I did! I hope it wasn't quoted at you in spite :lol:
Shalora's avatar
Don't worry about it! I just re-read it and it is a pretty good definition, if I may say so myself. ;p

Kaz-D's avatar
It is :D I quote it at anyone that will listen :D
eveyhop's avatar
Thanks for featuring my work! :)
phoenixleo's avatar
Is digital editing in surreal photography allowed? :?
Kaz-D's avatar
You mean photoshop editing and so on? Yes - to some extent. But it's important in surreal photography that most of the manipulation comes with the environment or with the camera.
phoenixleo's avatar
ooh! that is awesome :D :gallery:
bared's avatar
Great journal, it was informative, relevant and interesting. The recommended deviants had Galleries well worth viewing. :)
Kaz-D's avatar
makowina's avatar
Thank You Katy :blowkiss:
Kaz-D's avatar
You're welcome! :)
kinipelahh's avatar
Kaz-D's avatar
Is that like soya sauce? I only like certain sauce :/
kinipelahh's avatar
it's like no other sauce you've tasted before...

but it's awesome!
TheCreativeJenn's avatar
:heart::heart: Terrific. And your generous enough to feature deviants related to these discussions.

I love you. 8D
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