pho·​to·​re·​al·​ism | \ ˌfō-tō-ˈrē-ə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce photorealism (audio) \
variants: or less commonly photo-realism

Definition of photorealism

1 : the quality in art (such as animation or painting) of depicting or seeming to depict real people, objects, etc. with the exactness of a photograph Luca is largely a departure from the sort of animation style we're used to seeing in Pixar movies, swapping photorealism for something more stylised …— Patrick Cremona Photorealism in gaming means the characters and scenery are supposed to mirror real life in visuals as closely as possible.— Elizabeth Gipe [Robyn] Penn works from found images … and in the process of painting brings a ghostly, ephemeral quality to the photorealism of the documented ice-scapes.— Alexandra Dodd
2 : a movement in painting characterized by photographic exactness of detail A couple of years later his friend and fellow tennis pro Vitas Gerulaitis introduced him to photorealism. Now that's really art, McEnroe thought. It looks just like photographs.— Franz Lidz

Other Words from photorealism

photorealist \ ˌfō-​tō-​ˈrē-​ə-​list How to pronounce photorealism (audio) \ or less commonly photo-realist adjective
A natural offshoot of Pop Art and heir to one-man movements like Edward Hopper, photorealist paintings depicted the postwar American landscape, highlighting Vietnam War pessimism and the plight of working-class people in the recession-era '70s. — Martha Schwendener
photorealist or less commonly photo-realist noun, plural photorealists also photo-realists
[Don] Coen's goal, like that of the early photorealists, is to paint the images just as they would appear as projected slides. — Carol Dickinson
photorealistic \ ˌfō-​tō-​ˌrē-​ə-​ˈli-​stik How to pronounce photorealism (audio) \ or less commonly photo-realistic adjective
… using machine learning to make rendered footage look photorealistic. — Nathan Ord

First Known Use of photorealism

1961, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of photorealism was in 1961

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Cite this Entry

“Photorealism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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