How Studying Cubism Inspired This Photograph

Watercolor looking Photograph of Pittsburgh

Have you ever failed at something so spectacularly that you end up with something great?  Well, that is sometimes the story of my life.  I’m always trying new, sometimes crazy, things with my photography.  The thing is, I get these crazy ideas from researching other artists, art forms, and just about everything in-between.  Unfortunately, most of time these ideas flop like a chubby kid jumping into the pool belly first.  But sometimes….

Recently I was reading about Cubism and it’s impact on photography and decided to try to create an image that was not only inspired by Cubism but actually applied it quite literally to its creation.  After about three hours of toiling over the 30 or so images in Photoshop I wanted to use for the image, I came up with the disaster you see below.

Instead of looking like a work of art inspired by Cubism it looks more like I cut a bunch of squares out of a bunch of different images and pasted them to a piece of paper like a 5th grader.  That, my friends, is called failing forward.

Had I not wasted that time tried that I would not have developed the approach needed for the image you see below.  Using what I learned from my spectacular failure I discovered I could create these abstract images that borrowed from my initial Cubism workflow and incorporated workflow from my Fractal Cityscape series (you can check that out in my fine art portfolio here if you’d like).

Watercolor looking Photograph of Pittsburgh

Am I done with my Cubism experiment?  Absolutely not.  I’ve figured out what doesn’t work and will continue to explore other workflows and hopefully discover new things along the way.  In the meantime, I’ve nailed a workflow down to create more images like this one and will build a new series of images with it.

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

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