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Education & Training – Abstract Photography with Mike Whalen

January 12, 2021 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm


Most photography is based on capturing real, easily recognizable subjects such as a persons, places, or things. Abstract photography is different. It focuses on finding simple elements such as: shapes, forms, lines, textures, tones, patterns, and colors. These elements can be found everywhere, and typically, can be small visual pieces of physical objects. Distortions from reflections or looking thru textured glass can also produce interesting abstract effects.

This presentation will show examples of abstract and semi-abstract images and how they were created, mostly in-camera, plus a few generated from post-processing in Photoshop.

These references provide tips on creating abstract images:

Abstract Photography for Beginners: 9 Tips for Capturing Stunning Abstract Images

35 Abstract Photography Tips and Ideas

The Complete Guide to Abstract Photography: 112 Tips


As a teen, Mike learned a few basic photo tips from his father, an artist and photographer. He dabbled with film cameras in the 80’s and 90’s, and after that, played with several digital point-and-shoots.  However, his interest became more passionate after purchasing a basic DSLR in 2006.

Mike joined NVPS in 2009 after learning about the club from fellow member, Willa Friedman. He held board positions from 2010 to the present, including President in 2013. He received several distinguished service awards and many competition awards thru the years.

Before COVID, Mike volunteered weekly as a pet photographer for the Fairfax County Animal Shelter and, and as an event photographer for charitable organization’s such as: The National Ovarian Cancer Coalition and The Epilepsy Foundation of America.

Mike says that joining NVPS was a most important step in furthering his love of photography.



January 12, 2021
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
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