- Hardcover: 216 pages
- Publisher: Images Publishing Dist Ac (November 11, 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1864708387
- ISBN-13: 978-1864708387
- Product Dimensions: 11 x 1.1 x 15.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Customer Reviews: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #539,658 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Fierce Beauty: Storms of the Great Plains Hardcover – November 11, 2019
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From the Publisher
A note from award winning photographer, Eric Meola
I began photographing tornadoes and storms out in the heartland of America several years ago. As springtime approaches, I become restless with the need to get out into the prairie, the flat grasslands and the empty, eerie landscapes of the states that form tornado alley: Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, the Dakotas, Wyoming, Montana, Texas and Colorado and New Mexico. I like to look at clouds, I love to photograph them—this is where I can be a kid forever. I’m reminded of the Minor White quote, “A photographer is someone who has his head in the clouds and his feet on the ground.”
The photography of storms and weather phenomena is, for me, an exploration of the ephemeral, the constantly changing shapes and movement of the atmosphere. My photographs are meant to capture the dichotomy between the fury of skies torn apart and the tranquil, lonely solitude of the Great Plains.
Experience the open skies and infinite landscapes of the mythic prairies and plains where storms are as breathtaking as the American heartland where they are born.
Tornado with Wall Cloud Minneola, Kansas May 24, 2016
Lightning Strikes Stamford, Nebraska June 21, 2017
Rotating Updraft Base of a Supercell Hawk Springs, Wyoming June 22, 2013
Hail-Filled Sky Agate, Colorado June 19, 2018
Storms can be both harrowing and beautiful, and photographer Eric Meola opts to focus on the latter. With more than 100 atmospheric photographs of tornadoes, dust storms, lightning and other weather phenomena, Meola's new book captures the allure of wild weather, and his own experience as a storm chaser in the Great Plains. In August 1977, Meola photographed Bruce Springsteen on a gravel road in Nevada, under the dark clouds of a brewing storm, shooting the image that graces the cover of the musician's album The Promise. Being so close to the powerful storm inspired Springsteen to write "The Promised Land," and it inspired Meola, decades later, to create the body of work that fills the pages of this book. -- Jennifer Nalewicki, The 10 Best Books About Travel of 2019, Smithsonian Magazine
In 1977, Eric Meola and I took a trip to the American Southwest to take some photos for my album, "Darkness on the Edge of Town." As usual, Eric caught some great pictures but what he really captured was something in the sky and in the lay of the land that deeply revealed the grandeur and character of the country. This book extends that narrative and reaches something profound. -- Bruce Springsteen
If one wishes simply to own the best "coffee table" collection of storm images, that's just part of what this book represents to me…(it is) solidly at the top of my ordered heap of storm-oriented photo books. -- Dr. Charles Doswell III, meteorologist, formerly with the National Severe Storms Laboratory
Meola was drawn to these roads so that he might witness a single, rare, and unrepeatable event when the sky churns as it does nowhere else on earth. There are moments in FIERCE BEAUTY when I must remind myself that the pale streak of a supercell's hail core or the fiery tumult of mammatus clouds at sunset aren't brushstrokes, but photographic portraits of the natural world in all her fury and grandeur. -- Brantley Hargrove, Author, The Man Who Caught the Storm
About the Author
Eric Meola's photographs are included in the archive of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP), the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., the International Center of Photography in New York City, and the George Eastman Museum in Rochester, New York. His previous books include Born to Run: The Unseen Photos (Insight Editions, 2006), and INDIA: In Word & Image (Welcome Books, 2008). He has won numerous awards, including the 'Advertising Photographer of the Year' award in 1986 from the American Society of Media Photographers. In 2014, he received the 'Power of the Image' George Eastman award as part of ceremonies and an exhibition in Beijing, China.
"Truly epic" - Laurell K. Hamilton Learn more
6 customer reviews
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After more than thirty trips that ranged from the Gulf of Mexico up into the Canadian Prairies, Meola shows us a truly awesome and awe-inspiring range of nature’s power: storm cells form, lightning strikes, percussions of hail emerge from turquoise clouds, tornados perform a danse macabre. Finally, the skies clear and a sublime light falls again on a landscape given new life after the maelstrom. Meola catches it all, his wide-angle lenses taking in extensive swaths of atmosphere that makes even the landscape below look diminutive.
With Fierce Beauty, Meola takes up the continuation of a journey that began in 1977 when he traveled through the Southwest with Bruce Springsteen on an album cover shoot. The book is as much a journey through the atmospheres within us as we encounter a landscape that stretches past infinity, with its yardstick-flat horizons and dirt roads that call us to venture further into the Great Plains, and within our selves.
There have been very few objects I have ever purchased which give me true joy: a couple of cameras, a watch, a Japanese knife, and this book. What all of those things have in common is purity and simplicity of design and execution. When using or beholding them I am reminded of the beauty humans are capable of and the ferocity of dedication it takes to achieve it.