Buying art photography

Uncomplicated Definitive 6 Step Guide to Buying Art Photography


We Came To Party, by Dinesh Boaz

Step guide to buying art photography
The Burning Monk Photo by Malcolm Browne on TIME 100 Photos 

Depending on who you ask, buying fine art photography is still an exclusive endeavour not for the feeble budget or the unseeing mind. 

Some say fine art photography harbors a divine space in the intellect as a medium for the communication of virtuosity or the fine appreciation of the beauty that abounds in the earth. These take their place in genres of photography like architecture, portraits, documentary, and cityscapes. 

This guide will tell you what to look for, the little known digital haunts harboring the best art photography finds, and how this niche of art photography creators, makers, and buyers alike, continues to be a force of lens, lighting, and beauty

1 The inherent eye of the fine art photographer and the collector 

The capturing of historical events requires not only a photographer to be in the right place at the right time, with access to people and places. But to have a vision of what would be invaluable, poignant and exact in both capturing and chronicling a substantial milestone on the timeline of history. 

It takes deftness and a hawk-eye to seize it into the archives in the fleeting seconds you have to do so. This leads to the most unadulterated statements such as Thich Quang Duc, the iconic monk in The Burning Monk of 1963, photographed by Malcolm Browne. 

A knowing eye can sense the aliveness despite the decades and the conviction and energy of the war ravaged Saignon, Vietnam street. A fine art photograph is one that echoes protest, culture, the voices, passions, and emotions of the buildings and people alike, those which are not visible, and those that are. 

Despite those still claiming exclusivity, there’s a subgroup tossing the idea of the proposed exclusivity of fine art photography collecting to the wind, seeing it as wholly accessible to everyone. As print art becomes widely used it becomes affordable. This advent meets millennials who’ve become the largest living adult generation according to the United States Census, which trickles into a generous millennial population boasting are collections.

Buying art photography
Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash

2 When did fine art photography collecting start trending

According to an article on the history of digital print evolution of digital fine art photography printing, fine art photography became a layman mainstay in the early 90’s when the Iris Graphics Inkjet printer made digital prints possible. Compared to methods we see today this printer was a dinosaur but paved the way for faster and less expensive development and printing of photographs. An important piece of making sure art photography kept its beauty was choosing methods that maintained the changelessness of the image and kept the same quality through time. This involved high pigmented colors operated by printers which we know by common names like Epson and Canon. This evolution of printers has bridged photographers with the artist that love their work, as printing photographs could not be easier. 

3 Why art photography is more accessible than ever and where to find art photography worth collecting 

There is no shortage of websites to find collectible wall-worthy art photography. You’ll even find that some of the photographs you purchase go to support the independent photography who took the photos and or to charities in association with the subjects represented in the photograph. 

Technology advancements have ultimately made collecting fine art photography non exclusive, yet still niche and a sign of the cultured, learned, intellectual, and aesthete. Put mildly, print runs of photography have burst open the barricades for art lovers to share in the beauty of the art work of artists they know and love. Of course this isn’t the only art photography collected, but it is the one that’s shaped a new niche. 

Print runs of iconic art photography have aided in creating a market for collectors of all socioeconomic backgrounds to own art. Many photographs can be printed in varying sizes, from a small 3×3 to a large 24 x 16 and all sizes in between. The various price points per size help fit a multitude of collector needs and budget. 

You can also purchase photography right from a gallery website you know and love. They will often be displayed with an artist profile, which introduces you to the piece or the general work of the photographer, and will offer different sizing options if they exist. Otherwise, you may be the sole owner of an original photograph which may appreciate in value depending on the legacy of the artist. 

Check out our photographers here as well as other fine art selections  MAC FINE ART. 

How to acquire art photography in steps
Digital Photo by Robert Zuckerman Umbrella Haiku (Wonderism)

4 Styles of art photographs 

Analog: Analog photography is the mother of digital photography. It’s what you think of when you remember polaroids or dark rooms. It’s other name is film photography. This form of photography does not use any electric components and is usually chemically processed during the development phase. You’ll need to learn how to properly load film and ensure there’s no damage done in the process or simply enjoy the fruits of an analog photographer’s labor. These photos are often shot on black and white film which  is seen as the most absolute form of photography. Some common analog or 35 mm cameras are by Olympus, Canon, and Pentak. You might even luck up on one at your local thrift store or from an ebay seller.

Digital: Digital photography is the baby of analog. And like all mothers you want your child to do and be more than you are, the same is true for analog. This does not in any way take away from analog, but with all honesty, digital photography is the escalator by which photography has traversed from different hands and lands. It has lowered the barriers to access and created several bridges for photographers to be known internationally that otherwise would not get the chance. Digital photography has made opportunities for many. And of course analog photography has its genetics all over digital photography collections, yet it does not try to compete with the beauty of it’s mother analog. 

Acquire art photography in steps
Dinesh Boaz, Aerial Photographer of MAC FINE ART

Aerial: Aerial photography is any photograph taken from the air. Think of your favorite animal planet show or national geographic magazine issue. You wonder how they got such an expansive view of the Serengeti or Afghan desert camel caravan,two words–drones and aircrafts. However, these aren’t the only methods for shooting aerial.  Dinesh Boaz, a CURATED MAC FINE ART photographer actually shoots his aerial photography from a doorless helicopter. Telescopes and blimps are also used in aerial photography. These types of photographs were even once taken by rockets and balloons. Only aerial photography can capture the sprawling perfection of painstaking urban planning and architecture such as the city of Barcelona, which may be one of the most organized cityscapes.