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Elements of Black and White Photography: The Making of Twenty Images Paperback – September 1, 2001


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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

In this impressive book, photographer Todd shares the knowledge and skills he has acquired over the past 30 years making exquisite black-and-white photographs. As suggested by the subtitle, the book is organized around a detailed explanation of how he made 20 fine photographs. Starting with the concept, he describes how he composed each image, including negative data (film, camera, lens, format, and developer). He then recounts how he made each print, including print data (enlarger, lens, paper, developer, toners, and mounted size), and includes contact prints of the exposures he made and the negative selected for printing. Nearly all the examples are of medium-format images made from a Plaubel Makina or a Hasselblad. All of the photographs are beautifully composed and printed with remarkable subtlety of texture, detail, and tonal range. In fact, many of the photographs are so well executed that they appear to have been made with a large-format camera. Anyone interested in making excellent black-and-white prints will find this book extremely valuable. It is also a joy simply to page through and admire the many striking photographs. Raymond Bial, Parkland Coll. Lib., Champaign, IL
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Amphoto Books; First Edition edition (September 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0817438211
  • ISBN-13: 978-0817438210
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 9.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,201 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Colin J. Clarke on February 6, 2003
Format: Paperback
I got this book at the same time as I got Barry Thornton's Edge of Darkness. I found they were complementary is many ways. George Todd has been at this craft of making monochrome pictures for several decades, and his skill and picture and printmaking ability shine through. Mr Todd has got the picturemaker's trinity of 'tone, detail and texture' pretty much down pat, and the book gives us fine example after fine example of that. Wheras Mr Thornton in Edge of Darkness tells us as much about his heart and his head as about his superb pictures, George Todd has provided an extremely detailed account of each picture from before the shutter was tripped to when the print was ready to mount. There is something for everyone here - technicians, printmakers, photographers, and the house guest who simply browses a well produced book of outstanding images over a cup of coffee. They won't need to read one word - the pictures will speak to them. I like the book most of all because it showcases the ability of medium format so well. If the negative sizes were not detailed, I'm sure most would think these prints were from large format negatives. I'm glad I have it in my library.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Murray Nye on August 31, 2005
Format: Paperback
I have several books on B&w photography and George Todd's The Making of Twenty Images is the best I've read so far. I particulary like the fact that he includes his negatives as he reveals what went into each photograph, from composition to film development, printing and mounting.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Colin J. Clarke on February 6, 2003
Format: Paperback
I got this book at the same time as I got Barry Thornton's Edge of Darkness. I found they were complementary is many ways. George Todd has been at this craft of making monochrome pictures for several decades, and his skill and picture and printmaking ability shine through. Mr Todd has got the picturemaker's trinity of 'tone, detail and texture' pretty much down pat, and the book gives us fine example after fine example of that. Wheras Mr Thornton in Edge of Darkness tells us as much about his heart and his head as about his superb pictures, George Todd has provided an extremely detailed account of each picture from before the shutter was tripped to when the print was ready to mount. There is something for everyone here - technicians, printmakers, photographers, and the house guest who simply browses a well produced book of outstanding images over a cup of coffee. They won't need to read one word - the pictures will speak to them. I like the book most of all because it showcases the ability of medium format so well. If the negative sizes were not detailed, I'm sure most would think these prints were from large format negatives. I'm glad I have it in my library.
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