Guy Tal • Deconstructing Vision

We’ve all heard about the importance of the 'artist’s vision' to the success of an image, and likely seen discussions separating craft from vision. Yet, defining artistic vision is not a trivial matter

The word ‘vision’ often is used in visual art as a catchall term to describe the intangible, cognitive qualities of an artist or a work that go beyond equipment and technique. We all heard about the importance of the ‘artist’s vision’ to the success of an image, and likely seen discussions separating craft from vision. Yet, defining artistic vision is not a trivial matter. Among the many factors involved are the artist’s personality traits and sensibilities; their sense of aesthetics; their feelings toward various subjects and scenes; their knowledge and experience, and so on. To further complicate things, artistic vision is not a fixed quality; it transforms and matures with the artist.

Perhaps a good place to start may be with the perception of the artist’s vision from the viewer’s perspective. What qualities of an image may lead us to conclude that its creator has a good artistic vision, beyond merely operating a camera? For me, originality is high on the list. No matter how aesthetically pleasing an image is, if the subject matter is ...

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I am a full-time photographer, writer, and naturalist living and working in the Colorado Plateau – a scenic and diverse desert region of the western United States spanning an area larger than most countries and states.

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