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Is Photography a True Art Form?

When you consider art, we tend to think about the obvious, predominantly paintings, but also sculpture and to a lesser degree music (as that really is one of the true art forms), however photography isn’t something which naturally comes to mind, so is it really an art form?

There are convincing arguments on both sides, one claiming that the photographer has merely captured the moment, even though it could be a once in a lifetime moment, however they have not created the moment and therefore can’t be considered an artist in the true sense of the word. The other side however would most certainly argue that the photographer has created the image and is therefore a true creator of the item (in this case a photograph), both sides seem to have a valid argument, although I must admit I lean towards the latter of the two.

The reason for this in my own mind is quite clear really, a photographer spends time preparing the shot (or even if they don’t) to create something unique, original and usually, although not always, pleasant to the eye. The resulting images will speak for them self and if it’s a picture which is worth viewing it will sell, if not it won’t, simple.

So to take that a step further and move away from the more intentionally artistic shots, how about a typical wedding photographer, are they an artist? I still say yes, they can capture some fantastic moments from the wedding day, those which the bride and groom may have been a part of, or possibly were not, either way, they may not have noticed it happen as such. Provided the images are good, they will be bought and are therefore an art form which someone is prepared to pay money for.

That being said, if the bride did not end up with some great shots of her in a wonderful wedding dress, there would be hell to pay!

The camera and equipment used by the typical wedding photographer is digital these days, this is ideal, as it enables the person standing behind the camera to take a multitude of shots and save them onto a memory card or hard drive, so they can then go through them at a later stage and forward over the best ones.

So to summarise my feeling is that if someone is creating something them self and call it art, then it is art, regardless if they make a sculpture out of clay or stone, and likewise regardless if they take an arty picture or wedding photographs.