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Photographs of the Southwest Hardcover – November 1, 1994
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It's beautiful work by Ansel Adams, well worth whatever you pay for the book. The pretentious twaddle by Lawrence Clark Powell is typical Tucson, people who manage to find fault with everything.
First, the pictures. Photography was part of my job for years, and I have visited probably half of the places included in this book. For example, consider the picture of White House Ruin in Canyon de Chelly, taken in 1942. I've taken dozens of photos of it, and hiked every foot in the vicinity. Nothing of mine comes close to the mastery of Adams beautiful black-and-white photograph. I suspect that even if I copied his picture as precisely as possible, mine would still look dull in comparison to his artistry.
Adams' mastery of the camera and the art of making prints is such that even in black-and-white, his pictures sparkle with a luminosity that puts color to shame. In recent years newspapers have wasted a great effort on color pictures. Adams' work shows how superior the old black-and-white photos could be in comparison to modern newspaper color. Any photo editor would weep to have such quality today. More's the pity the newspapers do not emphasize quality instead of glitzy novelty.
It's more than a book about the Southwest; it's a book about how to see nature and the world around us. Adams had an eye for natural beauty. I've no doubt he could find beauty and art even in a junk yard. He knew what to include in a picture, and how much to leave out, and the precise moment when it all came together.Read more ›
If you love this part of the country, this book is for you.