Four great techniques for creating abstract images are presented in this article: blur, zooming in, partial image, and Photoshop filters. When the techniques have been mastered, they can be applied to various subject matter to produce great abstract images.


The deliberate blurring of objects can create very interesting images. Dreamy or romantic images work best with this technique Therefore, it is important to select the subject matter carefully.

This technique can be done in a number of ways. Soft focus lenses produce soft images. An alternative is to attach a soft focus filter to a regular lens. If you would prefer to save some money, panty hose stretched over the front of a lens also works. Of course, the blur can always be added during image editing with Photoshop (or any other editing software).

As a last comment on this technique, deliberately blurred images often print best on matte paper. Matte paper produces a softer, gentler image than glossy or luster papers.

Zooming In

This next technique requires a zoom lens. A long shutter speed is used, and the focal length of the zoom lens is changed during the exposure. Generally, it is best to start at a wider angle and zoom into a narrower angle.

There are a few important points with this technique. A tripod is a necessity. Otherwise, there will be blurring caused by camera movement during the exposure. A strong center of interest is required. Without a strong center of interest, the image just ends up being a blur of lines with nothing to grab the viewer's attention. A contrast of tone or color between the center of interest and the background is necessary. This contrast makes the center of interest stand out. Last, this is a trial and error technique. It requires many images to be shot in order to produce one outstanding image.

Partial Object

With the partial object technique, the entire object is not photographed. Rather, the image focuses on just a part of an object. This technique depends heavily on form, color, and lines. The use of lines tends to be particularly important.

Photoshop Filters

Abstract images can also be created during image editing. An easy way to do this is to use Photoshop's filters. Photoshop has many filters that can be found in the Filter menu. The key here is to try different filters until one is found that produces an interesting abstract image.

One thing to keep in mind is that abstract images created during editing often look best when printed on matte paper.


Each of these techniques can create great abstract images. Now, all you have to do is grab your camera and try them out. While these four techniques are a good start, there is a lot more to learn about Abstract Photography.


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