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4.8 out of 5 stars
Looking at Ansel Adams: The Photographs and the Man
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2012
I am happy to have this book in my hand! The design, the paper it is printed on, and the fine printing of the black and white photographs all made this book a piece of art itself. I in particular like the paper, which makes the images look like real prints well mounted. The sizes of the photographs are satisfying. Details and tonal ranges are superb! The book itself is very informative, a best fit between Ansel's photograph books and his autobiography. First-hand stories from someone who worked closely with Ansel for seven years! Texts are a little short, but the accompanying images are not often seen by public. Above all, Ansel's masterpieces are reproduced here in their best quality, one almost taking my breath away when I first opened the book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2012
I'm a big fan of Ansel Adams, and over the years have enjoyed as many books of his photographs as I have been able to get my hands on. I will say unequivocally that this is the finest book about Adams and his work available today; in fact it is the finest that I have ever seen. The only things that might be better are his original portfolios, but in some ways, this is superior to even them. It covers his entire career. The reproductions of his prints are breathtaking, and the alternate versions are fascinating. The paper is as close to photo stock as you can find in a bound, mass produced volume; the size and format are ideal for reading AND for reproducing the images. Not too big, not too small; good in your hands AND on the coffee table. The text, written by Andrea Stillman, his long time assistant, is equally satisfying. It provides great insight into Adams' creative process and workflow, and how they changed over time, as well as his personal life. It is at once intimate and respectful, extremely readable, and thoroughly enjoyable. The structure of the book is wonderful as well. Each chapter deals with one of Adams' finest images, and the circumstances surrounding them, presented in chronological order.

Unlike many other books of Adams' images, this is one that you READ as well as look at. It is as engaging as any great biography, with the bonus of the stunning images, many that are not available anywhere else. It should be considered a multimedia tour de force. It is published by Little, Brown, Adams' sole authorized publisher, supervised by his Publishing Trust, so everything about the production is top notch. Everything about this book is just right. Nevertheless, it is surprisingly affordable.

I can't say enough in praise of this volume. But here is my ultimate endorsement: I borrowed this from my public library, and enjoyed it so much that I am purchasing a copy of my own.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 19, 2012
Andrea Stillman has drawn on new material to add nicely to information about how Adams worked, his personal feelings about some of his iconic images. A few lesser known images give insights into some of his development as a photographer.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2012
A great read and visuals over Ansels career. A well selected group of his images to define Ansel as a person. One of the best books on Ansel Adams I have read and looked at. And I have read most of them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 26, 2012
This is a very good look at several of Ansel's images. The commentaries on them really add a lot of interest. I also have the digital file on the iPad but don't feel that it adds much to the book. By all means get the book, but the digital file is of questionable value.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2013
I don't usually do reviews, but this morning I'm putting this book down at page 102 and giving it the highest rating and a review. The book is both part biography of Ansel Adams and part photographic technique and art. (Of course, both parts are inseparable and intertwined.) Admittedly, I like Ansel Adam's work. But I think this book would appeal to anyone who is interested in photographic technique and art. The photos are reproduced gorgeously, and there are a lot of them. The text is engaging. Added together in one book, one can see how an artist progresses and changes over the years - on both macro and micro levels. I'm so glad I bought this book. Thank you, Ms. Stillman.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 4, 2013
This is not a technical book about F-stops and shutter speeds but rather a book about the man behind the camera. It tells the story of some of the best known photographs. It is easy to make the photographer into a bigger than life person but this book brings out the human nature of Ansel Adams and reminds everyone that he was human with emotions, flaws, desires, weaknesses and strengths. I enjoyed reading the book and glad the author told the stories.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2013
Even as far back as college I enjoyed Ansel Adams photographs and even took a class in his Zone Photography techniques. I only wish that I was able to meet the man in person but this book got me as close as I possibly will be. The writing makes you feel as if you are right there talking with him. The pictures are an added bonus that makes this book a must have for anyone who loves Ansel Adams work.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 29, 2014
I'd seen this book at B&N and love it, that 's why I ordered it. I buy a lot of my books as used and when I saw this listed in the bargain books I thought this would be the way to go. After all, Amazon says, "The slight mark or stamp that may be present on the edges of a bargain book's pages is an industry's identification that it is an overstocked book and is not to be sold at the full price. Bargain books are not used, previously-read, defective, or inferior in any way."
Well, that's not quite accurate in this case. When I unboxed the book the first thing I said was, "this is sure dirty for a new book." The dust cover was filthy. There was a very small mark signifying it was an overstock, smaller than expected actually, but the edges of the dust cover are wrinkled like it has been used and it has a large dent in the edge of the binding. Now, I know I could send this back, but it is a bargain book after all, and it's just not worth the trouble. If I'd spent $40-50, then I probably would return it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I have read a number of biographies of Adams. Ms. Stillman presents a biography written as friend of Adams. She writes as though she is telling a friend about another friend. I feel I know the man Adams much better.
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