Main image

Surrealism photography is one of the most important revolutionary changes in the evolution of photography. Instead of art, a photograph is considered an attempt to copy. Surrealism is the bringing of “more than real” images into art forms.

Marquise Casati

Surrealism is a movement of artistic and spiritual activity that emerged after the First World War. Andre Breton was the founder of the surreal concept and has been influenced by the Dande movement. Surrealism is actually a real expression of spiritual feeling that has not been honed. Andre Breton describes surrealism in a surreal manifesto as a pure psychic automatism expressed in a person’s actual actions. Surreal art forms typically differ from conventional forms in that they do not have a particular form or idea. It can be an expression of a person’s basic instincts and imaginative ability of the subconscious. But when Surrealism came into the photograph, critics did not even illustrate such a possibility. However, Man Ray’s “Marquise Casati” changed faith when it brought an eye to the photograph. While it was an unintentional ambiguity, it showed an opportunity for the viability of surreal work.

Man Ray and Lee Miller are considered a legend in surreal photography because they were so successful in overcoming the limitations of photography to create surreal images. Maurice Tabard is another well-known surrealist who has his own technique for surreal images. Hans Bellmer creatively uses mechanical dolls to symbolize sexual images, for which Rene Magritte’s camera is a tool to create a photograph that matches his painting.

Surreal photos are depicted as images that symbolically represent dreams, night horses, poisoning, sexual ecstasy, hallucinations, and insanity. The difficulty with a photographic medium is that it absorbs reality, and often real images are not enough to express such unusual patterns. However, surreal photographers were known for performing the task because they were able to use photographic methods effectively. Regular photographs, body photographs, anthropological photographs, medical photographs, still photographs, and even police photographs are manipulated to create the impression of surreal images in photographs.

Surrealism in photography is done mainly by different techniques.

Light separation technology and the lens itself can be the main techniques of surrealism. A combination of photographs is one of the most popular processing techniques in which multiple images are combined. In a photo, photo paper can be used to print images instead of the camera. Images produced by splashes of light can create exceptional images with a surreal look.

Double exposure is another surrealistic technique where the camera is double-clicked or more without scrolling the negative. The second image is placed over the first image and the final product is an undefined mixture of the two. Cliche blood or negative glass is a surreal technique that uses a negative coating on a glass plate. However, sunbathing or the Sabatier effect seems to be the most special technique of surrealism. This produces a dramatic pattern effect through light-flushing the photo while expanding in dark spaces. It was discovered by Lee Miller, who had a selective translation of highlights and shadows. Light and dark areas with clear inverted lines make them best suited for surrealism.

Surrealism in photography has evolved a lot from primacy. New technologies and lenses offer a new generation of photographers an excellent opportunity to capture their mental feelings in the body of the camera.