From food photography to the needs of social media, the art of still life has been one of the most explored genres in photography in recent years. However, in fine art photography, still life has quite distant origins, from Daguerre to Henry Fox Talbot to begin with, followed by the great Edward Weston, Irving Penn....
A still life image creates a special relationship between the artist and the viewer with the objects portrayed, objects that are immobile and seemingly lifeless, yet capable of transmitting meaning and evoking sensations. The sense of alienation from the context creates a direct involvement with the work, the result being that the distance between the work and the viewer is truly minimal. This aspect is much appreciated by collectors who purchase a work because they love it (and not necessarily as an investment) — because of the way it involves them.
In fine art photography, still life is even more profoundly significant than commercial still life which essentially requires mastery of photographic technique and compositional skill. In fine art, still life becomes the personal expression of the photographer’s creativity which takes advantage of composition, lighting and color to express a concept and an emotional state.
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