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Examples: The Making of 40 Photographs Paperback – May 30, 1989


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Examples: The Making of 40 Photographs + Ansel Adams: The Camera (The Ansel Adams Photography Series 1) + The Negative (Ansel Adams Photography)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown; New Ed edition (May 30, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 082121750X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0821217504
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #197,883 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Adams explains the why and how some of his most famous photographs. Reading the book is like taking a short intensive course with Ansel himself. NEW YORK TIMES ... this is the one we've all been waiting for... Whether you're a professional photographer, an advanced amateur or simply an appreciator of fine art, EXAMPLES is a must. SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS As he talks about his work, you'll find Ansel the most informative and entertaining of guides... POPULAR PHOTOGRAPHY

About the Author

Ansel Adams (1902-1984) is one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century. In a career spanning more than 60 years, he made many photographs that became icons in the history of photography. He was honoured with exhibitions of virtually every major museum in the world.

More About the Author

Ansel Adams (1902 - 1984) was the most honored American photographer of the twentieth century. Through his exhibitions and publication of his work, his writings, and his leadership in the Sierra Club, Adams was also a prescient and highly effective voice in the fight to preserve America's remaining wilderness.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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As far as I'm concerned, this is a must have 4th book to the Ansel Adams series of The Camera, The Negative and The Print.
T. Tom
If you want to learn photography and you would prefer to learn (or supplement your learning) by intensive case study, this is the book for you.
Bob Carpenter
For those who love these images, the stories that accompany them will broaden and deepen your appreciation of what Mr. Adams accomplished.
Donald Mitchell

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

160 of 164 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 21, 2000
Format: Paperback
An essential book for all photography fans!
In 1983, Ansel Adams picked 40 of his most memorable and diverse black and white photographs as examples of his work. For each one he wrote a brief essay that described the circumstances of deciding to photograph the subject, how he came to prepare for the photography, his companions, special challenges that occurred along the way, how he selected the composition, tricky light and shadow conditions encountered, technical details of how the image was captured (equipment, film speeds, settings, filters, lenses, etc.), technical details of printing the image, and the surprises he experienced.
In the midst of all this, he shares his philosophy of life, nature, and the art of photography. It's like attending a master class with a genius. Even if you know nothing about photography, this book will open your eyes to new ways of seeing and experiencing the world around you.
For those who love these images, the stories that accompany them will broaden and deepen your appreciation of what Mr. Adams accomplished. If you are not a technically-oriented photographer or fan, realize that only about 20 percent of the material is primarily technical. The technical parts are very interesting, but the rest of the material is even better.
Mr. Adams did draw the line at one point though. "Absent from these pages [is] a statement of what the photograph 'means.'" His reason: "Only the print contains the artist's meaning and message." In other words, the work should speak to you for itself.
He does point out some limits to his essays that you should keep in mind. He often doesn't remember when he made a particular photograph.
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Paul North on March 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
Forget "...every photographers library..." This should be in every library. It's one of the ten best books I've ever read. Yes, I'm an amateur photographer but this book is way deeper and of so much more value than just knowing which f-stop he used.
This is a beautifully illustrated book of short stories chronicling the adventures of a master as he passionately pursues his craft. It's a love story with nature. If this book doesn't inspire you to climb a mountain or to sit beside a stream for a few hours, I don't know what will. If it also inspires you to photograph your little corner of creation, there's plenty of insight in these pages as well.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Bob Carpenter on August 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
If you want to learn photography and you would prefer to learn (or supplement your learning) by intensive case study, this is the book for you. Ansel Adams is a master at controlling composition, light and perspective, and he conveys his unique methodology admirably in this book. This book covers much more than his epic landscapes -- there are a lot of still life, portrait and architectural case studies. And he's not just discussing the zone system, but also everything else involved, including packing the right equipment, leaving at the right time, and hunting down the right subject. And above all, patience and persistence. The photos themselves are reproduced with admirable tone, sharpness, and contrast, as they are in all the books in this series. And although there are only forty of them, each case study runs two or three pages in addition to a full page photo. And if you like this, check out Ansel Adams' classic three part intensive introduction to photography, in the same series as this book: The Camera, The Print, and The Negative.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 1, 1997
Format: Hardcover
"Examples: The Making of Forty Photographs" takes you on a
journey of vision and creativity of one of the influential
photographers of the late twentieth century. Adams provides
you with an in depth discussion of forty of his well known images.
He carefully describes the circumstances that lead to taking
each picture, how the subject was approached, and then
follows up with a discussion of technique resulting in
the final print. "Examples:" will inspire you and influence
the way you capture the natural world with the camera. This
book is a must for any photographers library.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 31, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book is an inspiration for all of us whose photos don't look like they were taken by Ansel Adams. It shows the painstaking effort that went into some of his great photographs, and the sheer luck that captured others.
The technical descriptions are very interesting and helpful for anyone who wonders how such great prints were made. The more personal stories behind finding the images really give you a sense of what it means to make great photographs. Add in Ansel Adams' personal feelings about the art of photography and you've got a book every photographer should read.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Carl H. Johnson on May 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
Heralded as perhaps one of the most influential conservation photographers of all time, Ansel Adams for many has existed only as a name attached to brilliant, vibrant and expressive landscape photography. Perhaps if you have read his three-party series, "The Camera," "The Negative," and "The Print," you are familiar with Adams's technical thought processes. With "The Making of 40 Photographs," we gain insight into Adams' creative process. And for many of us who aspire to create brilliant nature photography, it is this insight that is most valuable.

"The Making of 40 Photographs" seeks to answer that question we all ask when we see a tremendous photographic print: How did the photographer take that photograph? But, "The Making" does far more than that. It seeks to explore not only the individual creative process, but the growth of the art form and the important historical transition of its wide acceptance as true art in his discussions of the f/64 Group.

As far back as 1980, Adams even goes so far as to predict digital photography as the next big step, referencing what he calls the "electronic image." This is a valuable insight, as many today challenge digital photography and question its detrimental impact on the photographic arts.

Any photographer who wishes to learn more about this master and explore his or her own potential to create brilliant images must read this book.
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