Abstract Photography

♥♥♥♥♥ Mike – I really liked the way Tony delivered this course.  He is an excelent teacher and although I’m not usually good at art, I found the way he teased things out really worked for me.  I went away with a mounted print and have now framed it for my office wall.

♥♥♥♥♥ Coroline – Super day.  Great facilities, great lunch, great tutor – I learned to see and think differently!  What more can I say.

♥♥♥♥♥ Magnus – I was really insprired by this course. It really helped me to develop my own sense of style. The mounted print was a great idea, I was quite proud of it when I got home!

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Book now for Saturday 8th December

Initially, this may seem a bit of a contradiction, as photography is about capturing the real world. How might it be possible to photograph “abstract” elements, as the photographer does not enjoy the same freedoms as a painter you may well ask? It is possible to view the world purely in terms of the constituent visual elements, namely line, colour, tone, shape, patterns and texture, in which that element of “reality” is so reduced, that the photograph can reasonably be compared to an abstract painting.



So how do we achieve this?

The first task is to scrutinize your immediate environment looking for, and then photographing “scraps of detail” that in some way mirror examples of abstract art you are familiar with. Prior to attending it wouldn’t be a bad idea just to check out a few examples, possibly in a book or even on-line. If you find time to visit a gallery, that would be even better. Remember, the images you should be searching out should be entirely “non-figurative”. What that means is that you should not be able to identify a face, a figure, a landscape or anything tangible within the picture, no matter how stylised. The visual elements should be the main feature, so it could be a study of intersecting lines, for example, or possibly blocks of colour that just seem to work. Shooting with a telephoto or macro lens works particularly well.

This workshop is limited to a maximum of 4 students.

Programme for the day.

1) A brief introduction to what is meant by “abstract”. We will look at a few examples of abstract art and consider what makes them abstract. The work will range from the hard-edge style of Piet Mondrian through to the loose canvases of Jackson Pollock.
2) The tutor will show some examples of abstract photography that have been achieved without the need for digital manipulation.
3) Further work will then be shown of abstract images that have been manipulated in Photoshop; this part of the day will conclude with showing participants precisely how these were achieved.
4) Dependent upon the images students bring, there will be opportunity to a use your camera to photograph some textured backgrounds here at Lacock Photography that can be used sucessfully.  Remember to bring your camera.
5) Each student will have access to their own PC workstation, and under the guidance of the tutor, they will be guided through numerous techniques that specifically enhance the images they have brought along. Every student is different and that will be rigorously observed. The images you finally create will be unique to you! This part of the course will represent the major part of the day.

Do I need to be a “Photoshop wizard” to succeed with this course?

Definitely not! As long as you can confidently open a file into Photoshop and make a duplicate layer, the rest can be easily learnt. We will not be indulging in the many “filter effects” that Photoshop has to offer, as the results are rather predictable. We aim to be more creative than that!


Here are 10 examples that work well with absract work.

  • Flowing water.
  • Wet beaches.
  • Close-up details of masonry, or crumbling walls.
  • Natural elements.
  • Shadows.
  • Scratched or distressed metal.
  • Marks in the road.
  • Peeling Paint.
  • Ice.
  • Reflections.

Once you arrive each day we look after you until 4:00pm! You won’t have to go out to find somewhere to get lunch or bring sandwiches.

Included in the price is:

● Refreshments (coffee, tea etc)
● Buffet lunch


The Tutor – Tony Worobiec FRPS

Author of 15 books, Tony Worobiec studied fine art at The University of Newcastle upon Tyne and spent 18 years as head of a large design faculty in Dorset. He has won awards for photography in the UK and internationally, and has had work exhibited in London’s Barbican Gallery, Bradford’s National Museum of Photography, The Menier Gallery London and The Fox Talbot Museum Lacock. He is a founder member and until recently chairman of the prestigious Arena Group of Photographers. Dozens of his photographs have been used for book or album covers.

His work has appeared in many photographic magazines both here in the UK and in America. More recently he has developed an expertise in digital imaging, exploring both monochrome and colour techniques and has been invited to write extended articles for specialist digital photographic magazines such as Black & White Photography, Practical Photography, Total Digital Photography, Digital Photo Digital Camera and Photo Techniques USA.

A passionate traveler, Tony (together with his wife Eva,) has made frequent visits to the USA, documenting the depopulating areas of western Nebraska, North and South Dakota and south-eastern Montana. The culmination of this work has been the much celebrated book “Ghosts in the Wilderness; Abandoned America” (published by AAPPL). This was favourably reviewed in numerous national newspapers including The Independent, The Guardian and The Washington Post. Very recently, a new book “Fragments of The American Dream” has been published, which reinvestigates the same area to see if many changes have occurred.

Another personal project involved scouring the old American highways in search of the dwindling glamour of many of the independent diners, motels, hotels, and theaters that continue to survive. This work is an attempt to celebrate these iconic beacons which epitomize the American dream and to ensure that they do not become a fading memory. This project was also published by AAPPL and is titled “Icons of the Highway”. Work from this project also appears on both The BBC and The Guardian websites.

A Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society, Tony is a fine art photographer with work in the permanent collection of The RPS, The Fox Talbot Museum and in numerous private collections here in the UK, in Europe, Japan and in The States.