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Ansel Adams: Classic Images Hardcover – October 30, 1986
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From Publishers Weekly
These classic photographs were selected by the late Ansel Adams himself to be permanently representative of his work. Included are familiar scenic compositions like Moonrise, Hernandez and Half Dome, Yosemite, but there are also portraiture and closeups of patterns in nature. Alinder, director of Friends of Photography, chronicles Adams's life and describes his particular development in which perception of subtle tonalities came to define the photographer's vision. He tells also of great technical achievements (such as the "zone system" for exposure and printing) and this master photographer's related sensibilities as a classical musician and ardent nature conservationist. Museum of Modern Art curator Szarkowski appraises the impact Adams had on America's appreciation of itself. BOMC and Photography Book Club selections.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top customer reviews
I would like to compliment James Alinder on an outstanding biographical essay concerning Adams' life and photographic techniques. This essay will add useful knowledge to anyone who wants to better understand Adams' work and life, and their effects on us all. I would also like to compliment the selection of the images. These are clearly among Adams' best work.
Adams' technique used the very stark light of dawn and dusk to create vivid detail that echoed across the image from figure to figure. The result was to help the eye capture the connectedness of nature, the oneness of creation. So when the details become too small, it is like rubbing out whole chapters in a book. I was very disappointed in the publishing decision for this book's page size. In fact, only one of my favorite images still held most of its power for me in these large postcard sizes, Moon with Half Dome, Yosemite, 1960.
Without Mr. Alinder's essay, I would have graded this book as a two star effort.
Some of the lesser works which have less fine detail still show well. Here were my favorites of this small-sized collection:
Self-Portrait, Monument Valley, Utah, 1958
Monlith, The Face of Half Dome, Yosemite, 1927
Winnowing Grain, Taos Pueblo, New Mexico, 1928
Rock and Grass, Moraine Lake, Sequoia National Park, 1982
Georgia O'Keefe and Orville Cox, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, 1937
Mormon Temple, Manti, Utah, 1948
Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico 1941
White House Ruin, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, 1942
Monument Valley, 1958
Cypress and Fog, Pebble Beach, California, 1967
Sand Dunes, Oceano, California, 1950
If you are like me and love Ansel Adams' work, I suggest you look into Ansel Adams, The American Wilderness, which does feature large enough reproductions.
Sometimes we learn more from mistakes than from successes. Where are your efforts being undertaken on too small a scale to be fully effective? What can you do to change that?
Enjoy the beauty of nature in its full scale brilliance (outdoors and in larger-sized photographic books)!
This book provides high quality representations of Ansel Adams' photography in examples of 75 of his best images. The text, written by James Alinder along with a preface by John Szarkowski, portrays the story of Adams' life and his philosophy regarding art and existence. The text starts the reader off at his birth and takes you through Adams' childhood and the decisions he makes as he searches for an outlet for his creativity and a strong career path. Having also been a professional pianist, Adams' later discovers his passion for photography and nature, and spends the rest of his life a successful artist and activist.
This book takes you through major events in his life and references prints in the book to give visual examples of his ever-evolving photographic style. I would definitely recommend this book, if not as a successful biography, but as a stage for some beautiful, high quality reproductions of Adams' work.