Especially together with the digital photography, I see that concepts such as photographer, artist, photography artist, fine art photography are used wrongly by the society. In this article I will transfer my own definitions after briefly describing these concepts.
Can anyone take a good picture?
Yes. Even animals can take good photographs. (example:www.katz23.de) Even a stopped watch is right twice a day. If you take a lot of pictures, of course some of them will be beautiful.
Is every photograph an artwork?
No. It needs to bear these qualifications to be considered an artwork.
What are the properties of an artwork?
- It needs to be produced by an artist.
- It needs to be unique genuine.
- It needs to reflect and let us feel the insight and interior world of the artist who created it.
- It needs to be universal. Values it contains needs to be embraced and perceptible by all societies in the world.
- It should be able to challenge time.
- It should have harmony. (Some may call it equilibrium, beauty or aesthetics. I call it harmony as I believe it has deeper meanings.)
Are all photographers artists at the same time?
We call the people in whose life photography has a huge part either as a hobby or an occupation, photographers. Yet not all photographers are photography artists. A great photograph we accidentally took during a trip is not an artwork. And therefore we cannot be photography artists only for taking that beautiful frame. A person needs the following peculiarities to be an artist.
Who is an artist?
An artists is a person who produces artworks. Being an artist is not a temporary process in one’s life, it is a way of existence.
What are properties of an artist besides producing artwork?
- An artist is creative.
- He has ideas about life. He reflects them on his works.
- People follow the artists through the gateway that they opened by their authenticity and pioneering in their works.
- Art is the way of communication and reason of existence of an artist. He transfers his ideas through art.
- His ideas are one step ahead of the society as the artist sees something else when looking at the same place as everybody.
- An artist is constructive. Works of an artist canonize positive values and insults and criticizes negative behaviors. And due to these properties, he is often perceived as opposing.
What are the qualifications an artist does not need to bear?
- An artist does not need to be complying, disciplined, organized, intelligent, happy or highly educated, but they may be.
- They do not have to be an example for the society with their actions although they broaden the horizon.
Does the artist produce his works for the society or the art itself?
Art, is the way of communication, just like speaking. Why does a person talk? For the society? For the sake of speaking? Social human speaks for communication and to exist. And artists perform their arts to exist. While the works produced by the artist are a treasure for the society, the artist does not make these works for the gain by society. They do it because it is their only option. In this context, if you prevent an artist from producing art, he simply dies. If you deprive a society of artists, that society eventually dies.
What is fine art photography?
Fine art photography is to perform art by using mainly photographic techniques in a work.
How do we know a photographer is an artist?
Being an artist does not require a diploma like a practitioner. Although titles given by international and reputable institutions reinforce that the view that the person is an artist, we cannot speak of strict rules in this matter. We tend to name a photographer as photography artist if they take good pictures with many and expensive equipment. Asking these questions can inform us about this.
- Do they have unique and different technique in their photographs? Do they have a unique style on color, composition, toning and subjects and approach?
- Do you think you could guess the photographer of the photograph after a while if you don’t know who took the picture? Is there a mutual spirit or thought that is connecting the photographs?
- Do you tend to stare and think about the photographs?
- Briefly, do their photographs have the qualities of an artwork and themselves have qualities of an artist?
Works by non-artist photographers usually have these specifications:
- Their photographs highly resemble other works in all aspects.
- There is no unity between techniques and idea in their photographs. He can perform his work by using different techniques and subjects. The most important mutual attribute in their works is the effort to be aesthetic.
- Their concerns are not artistic. The most important criteria for success is direct acclamation by others. Not all artworks need to be acclaimed or to be financially worthwhile. There may be works that are understood way after they are created. With no doubt, artists also want to be acclaimed but while non-artists give up on photography when they are not acclaimed, real artists proceed.