Abstracts, Minimalism, and the Intimate Landscape

by Dean Hebert
November 1, 2011


Stones by Dean Hebert ©

When looking through the lens of a camera, your perception is altered visually. You see things differently than you normally would. Through the lens you are able to find and isolate forms and structure, making order out of a chaotic world.

Abstract -content that depends solely on intrinsic form rather than on narrative content or pictorial representation.*
*the free dictionary by Farlex

In abstract art, an image must hold the viewer's attention without a recognizable subject, relying soley on colour, line and texture. Nature is full of abstract forms; water, ice, sand, rocks, and clouds. Using a macro lens or a longer telephoto lens helps you to isolate your subject. Sometimes holding the camera to your eye and looking at your subject that way is the only way to "see" your composition.

Nightmare in ice by Dean Hebert ©

Nightmare in ice

Patterns in ice are photographed often by many different photographers. I didn't go out looking for this image but when I saw the lines and shapes, there was a haunting, vaguely sinister overtone to it. Suggestions of evil; bones, bat-wings, skulls; only suggestions but subconsciously the stuff of nightmares.

Rock abstract by Dean Hebert ©

The colour and swirls found in this rock surface defy any sense of scale and allow your mind to form it's own idea of what it's looking at.

Lines in snow by Dean Hebert ©

The lines in the snow all lead to a point outside of the frame.

Minimalism-reduced to its most fundamental features and core self expression.*
*the new world encyclopedia

Bubbles in sand by Dean Hebert ©

A reflection of trees on a wet, sandy beach, with a line of bubbles flowing diagonally into the distance allow the viewer to make their own associations.I processed this in black and white to leave more leeway for interpretation.

A line of bubbles in the sand, shadows in the snow, subtle shading of the tree-line, story-telling in it's most basic, uncluttered, unadorned form. Photographic Haiku. Minimalism should impact a feeling or overall emotional tone.

Reflections by Dean Hebert ©

Soft pastels in subtle layers of diagonal lines have a water-colour look. This was taken early morning on an overcast day using a telephoto lens at 250mm(400mm full-frame equivelant).

Water colour tree reflections by Dean Hebert ©

Reflection of trees in water

Winter abstract by Dean Hebert ©

In this winter scene, the simple lines of snow ridges lead the eye through the scene and the dark twigs add a focal point.

Intimate-(of an association, knowledge, understanding, etc.) arising from close personal connection or familiar experience.* *dictionary.com

Plant by Dean Hebert ©

When an area speaks to you on an emotional level, you find yourself returning again and again, to experience the peace, grandure or invigorating views and ambiance. Getting to know an area in this way allows you to make connections and frame images that someone else might bypass on their way to the "iconic" scene.

Forest and moss by Dean Hebert ©

After passing this stretch of forest numerous times I couldn't help but stop and frame this shot as the light penetrated to the floor, giving the moss covered branches an inner glow.

Dawson Falls by Dean Hebert ©

This veiw of Dawson Falls from above as the morning light hits the front edge, leaves the background in shadow.

Rock flowers - Lichen by Dean Hebert ©

Rock Flowers

As I explored an area on Harrison Lake in British Columbia, the patterns on this rock caught my eye and reminded me of flower blossoms.

Some photos combine elements of all three styles and might not fit into any catagory.

Photo by Allison Kenis


After recieving a camera as a birthday present from my wife in 2009, photography became an obsession, and now all my spare time is spent trying to capture and make photographic art. I've lived in Chilliwack BC since 1978 and find  more than enough inspiration right in my backyard. I've had 1 photo published in Outdoor Photography Canada and have been selected for Photo of the Month twice by Robert Berdan.

Website: www.deanhebertphotography.com

Like me on facebook (Dean Hebert Photography)

E-mail: cissie1@telus.net

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