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Showing 1-10 of 70 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 77 reviews
on February 8, 2012
Magnum Contact Sheets is truly a masterpiece in terms of content.

The reproductions of the photographs in this book are of outstanding quality. This is an iconic book that will be highly sought after in the future. I would expect prices to skyrocket once it is out of print.

In my opinion, this is a book that every serious photographer, student of photography and connoisseur of fine photography books should own.

And now for the bad news: Due to a combination of marginal binding strength by Thames & Hudson and improper packing for shipment by Amazon, I had to return the book repeatedly to get an undamaged and/or non-defective copy. When copy #4 arrived, I at long last had an acceptable copy of this outstanding book. There are two threads on this book and the trials and tribulations associated with it at L-Camera-Forum (Google it).

I would rate the book at five stars (or an "A") for content and quality of photographic reproduction. However, in terms of the binding I would have to rate it at two stars (or a "D").

It is truly unfortunate that the marginal binding has flawed an iconic book that is in all other ways a masterpiece.
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on October 15, 2014
A brilliant book I would recommend any aspiring photographer or photojournalist to have in their collection as it talks about not just the trials or work of the great ones before them, but it shows them how the photographers of the past had worked.

I particularly love this book as it shows how much the final printed out shoot differs from the ones shown in the contact sheet indicating that some degree of printing skills was involved to make the photo work very well. As well as that exposure is not always spot on when they took the photos in the hectic situation.

I also love the stories associated with each of the winning shots from each contact sheet taken over the years. Keep in mind, this isn't just for film enthusiast (but it helps to have a better understanding of the work presented here) as later chapters shows digital contact sheet as well.
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on September 23, 2014
Eariler this year this book came up in a discussion in a photography forum, called "essential reading" for anyone who was interested in street photography.

Many of the images are stunning, even more are extremely confronting. Some are timeless, and will elicit strong reactions and emotions. Iconic scenes from all over the world,and people internationally known.

The stories behind the images, both personal and historic, add a level of understanding as to what and why.

It's well worth getting.

Oh, another thing; it's a large volume and quite heavy, so don't expect to tote it around for a read in the park.
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on March 30, 2015
This book represents a unique and extraordinary insight into the photojournalistic photographic process. Many famous images are represented here, but what makes them particularly valuable is you get to see the contact sheets as well as the stories behind the pictures. I know of no other book on photography that comes as close to this. Some examples that spring to mind are Ansel Adams - Making 40 Photographs, Michael Freeman's photo books, and most recently, those of Scott Kelby, all of which give you insights into technique and the photographer's mind. But none of these tap into the extraordinary resources captured in this book. My approach to reading and absorbing this substantial volume has been to look at the contact sheets first, to understand the material captured, and then see how your choices relate to those of the photographer. This in itself is a valuable learning experience, not diminished in any way by the clues contained on the contact sheet in the form of notations. This is one book that should be on the bookshelf of every serious student of photography.
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on October 22, 2014
Beware: This book may or may not be your cup of tea. It is huge, monumental, and quite tedious to look at. But it does exactly what it promises: show the contact sheets from which the iconic images were selected, and tell the story of how they came to be. This requires, of course, that the reader is well acquainted with said iconic images. Only photographers will find this book useful, but in return offers a treasure trove of unique insight into the workflow and thinking of some of the worlds best photojournalists.
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on December 31, 2016
This is a wonderful book full of historical photos. Being a photographer from the days of film photojournalism, I can identify what some of the photojournalists endured to create photos. If you are a photo enthusiast of film photography or new to photography, this book tells a story and one you will enjoy. The printing is outstanding and the quality of paper used is perfect to illustrate the reproductions of the older "proof sheets." I'll warn you, it's heavy - in weight, but well worth the purchase.
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on October 30, 2013
Magnum has just created the best photography collection in the world. This book is definitely a tribute to the most talented photographers in our era. It is an amazing collection of images that show not only their best shots, but also the entire filmstrip with other pictures taken before and after the main photo published in newspapers and magazines.
This book is an amazing resource for those who want to decompose and reverse engineer the style and composition techniques used by famous photographers. It is an extensive collection of black and white photos and includes even handwritten notes of the photographers who shot them. It is a must have book for any photographers considering enhancing their technique and style.
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on January 31, 2013
I bought this book, concerned about several prior reviews stating it arrived damage or that the binding was poor on the book. I was still going to get it. I really wanted to study it more than have it as a collector's piece.

I went to place my order and saw that Amazon had temporarily halted new orders of the book, pending review of reported problems. A couple days later the book was again available for order.

I placed my order and the book arrived extremely well packaged. The book was tightly wrapped in thin bubble wrap and tightly bound with tape. The wrapping worked to keep the book as a very solid piece and probably stopped the heavy pages from pulling and shifting against the binding during shipment.

The book is excellent and I'm enjoying studying it slowly.
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on December 20, 2014
Much like the original edition this new edition has some great content, telling the story behind some of the most iconic photos of the 20th century. The new book starts off at a better price. Sadly it still has some binding issues, mine is holding together, often when I turn the pages I hear the spine ripping off of the cover. I fear this book wont last a very long time, but the images within are truly timeless.
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on April 27, 2013
I gave this book 5 stars because it's an excellent collection of negatives from world renown photographers.

This book brings you into the vision a photographer while they're making photographs.

This book isn't just a picture book, it also comes with a nice write up on each photographer and the negatives shown.

It is a bit pricey but that's the price you'll have to pay for access into the minds of this collection of photographers.

If you've got the time and money I say buy the book, read it over a few times. It just may change the way you see things.
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