To Arrange, Or Not To Arrange – That Is The Question

Posted: March 28, 2017 in Uncategorized
In one of my Macro Boot Camps, a lady asked if I found that people were opposed to the fact that I arrange many of my subjects for photographing. I would have to say that there are always the purists who think that we should photograph  nature as it is naturally created, and then there are the others who agree with what I do. As for the non photographers they have nothing against what I do, if there is anyone who is opposed to it, it would usually be a photographer, who has certain photographic standards they live by.
If I was a journalist or a documentary photographer, then no I would only shoot my subjects as is, without any changes. But I consider myself first an artist and second a photographer. I search out the art that is naturally created my mother nature, but then I also take what subjects mother nature offers, and combine them to create my own artwork, the same as a painter would create a still life to paint.
The camera is just the tool I use to record the art. I can’t paint these things, so I use the camera as my paint brush and canvas.
Here are various colored aspen leaves that I arranged and added the water drops.

Here I added the feather to and interesting pattern in a tree stump.

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Comments
  1. halpernnj says:

    I agree.. you can take a so so image and create using cropping , PS, Topaz, Nik etc. in to a work of art. People look at my images and often can’t believe it’s not a  painting, yet it is a photo.If you work hard  on a photo, one can create something special. Thanks for your emailsArnold

  2. chrispayant says:

    For me photography is about learning and creating art and that means making images and not just photographing what I see. I also like photojournalism and travel photography which is different but for me thats a whole other genre. What I really love and get more satisfaction from is making art by arranging and staging things which is much more fun!

  3. Richard Grubola says:

    Well said treatise on what you do Mike!

  4. Paul Moertl says:

    I agree with you, Mike – nature shot, no arranging; everything else, be my guest!

  5. Beautiful picture. I agree with you, you are an artist first.

  6. Jennifer Benton says:

    When I first started doing floral and nature photography I wondered if I could arrange my image. I had seen work that I loved and wanted to recreate. I have since learned there is nothing wrong with arranging items as that is what artists do to capture what is in our mind. I love your art today.

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