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Author Topic: photography book acquisitions  (Read 1294 times)
Isaac
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« on: December 09, 2012, 03:03:33 PM »
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Seems like the local public library has put some good photography books on the shelves this week, so I thought I'd share.

Looking at Ansel Adams: The Photographs and the Man -- '...he saw Ansel taking a photograph of Precipice Lake on the Sierra Club High Trip in 1932 and rushed to set up his own camera next to Ansel's, sure that there must be something worth recording. It was not until several years later that he saw Frozen Lake and Cliffs. He lamented, "Jeez! Why didn't I see that!" '

Michael Freeman's Digital Photography Handbook -- I was surprised how well this book managed to be comprehensive, the best description I can come up with is a contradiction in terms - a detailed overview.

The Crafter's Guide to Taking Great Photos: The Best Techniques for Showcasing Your Handmade Creations -- Of course, crafty people use aluminium foil for reflectors, reversed gift wrap for seamless backgrounds, and parchment paper for diffusers.

Puppyhood: Life-size Portraits of Puppies at 6 Weeks Old -- If you like hearing "Aw! That's so cute!"
« Last Edit: December 09, 2012, 07:20:09 PM by Isaac » Logged
Riaan van Wyk
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« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2012, 02:17:44 AM »
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I wish the ones here had books of the nature you describe Isaac. Sigh.
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Isaac
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« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2012, 12:53:35 PM »
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I don't know who's making the book suggestions, but both Mountain View and Sunnyvale public libraries do seem to be thriving.

Wonderfully, they also allow books from libraries across California (and Nevada) to be brought to the local library and borrowed.
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Isaac
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« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2013, 01:08:57 PM »
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About a year later and I'm posting some more book titles. There's certainly no shortage of variety in books about photography.

Light--Science & Magic: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting -- "The effective size of the light source... Three types of reflection... the family of angles..."

Beyond Snapshots: How to Take That Fancy DSLR Camera Off "Auto" and Photograph Your Life like a Pro -- Family friendly.

The Elements of Photography: Understanding and Creating Sophisticated Images -- "...the grammar of photographic language... the frame... effects on focus and depth of field... effects relative to time and motion... the physical media..."
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Rob C
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« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2013, 02:21:11 PM »
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Strikes me as somewhat sad.

Reminds me of the British Journal of Photography, and a couple of their articles on the publishing of photographic books - at least, in Britain. One of the articles was about the late Bob Carlos Clarke, and another one was, I think, about the equally late Michael Busselle, where both concluded that the books eventually getting made pretty much had to be how-to ones. (Neither photographer was 'late' at the time of the interviews.)

Seems few publishers had the belief in art for art's sake...

As I said when I came in: pretty damned sad comment on the industry.

Seems France and Germany have a more enlightened approach to this.

Rob C
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Isaac
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« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2013, 02:33:10 PM »
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Don't confuse a couple of book titles I chose to post with any kind of indication that there's a lack of photobooks.

"The Best Photobooks of the Year: Martin Parr takes his pick."
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Rob C
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« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2013, 05:06:17 PM »
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Don't confuse a couple of book titles I chose to post with any kind of indication that there's a lack of photobooks.

"The Best Photobooks of the Year: Martin Parr takes his pick."




Well, if you ask Parr, you deserve what you get. I wouldn't take one of those as a gift.

Rob C
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Telecaster
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« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2013, 10:47:09 PM »
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For me it's been a banner year for photobooks. Finally got a copy of Saul Leiter's (RIP) Early Color. Finally got a copy of Pentii Sammallahti's Here Far Away. Two stonking good collections of Vivian Maier. A new Salgado. A new Burtynsky. A new (and sadly elegiac) Nick Brandt. Nathan Benn's Kodachrome Memory. A collection of Emily Dickinson poems consisting of photographs of the original manuscripts. A collection of Bruce Springsteen photos by Deb Rothenberg (a friend of a friend). Good times!

-Dave-
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Rob C
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« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2013, 03:35:07 AM »
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One of the reasons that I used to buy French PHOTO every issue was their book review. Taschen was quite prolific and so were a couple of French publishers too. Unfortunately, few of those books that I fancied were available here for inspection, and only the German Taschen had a Spanish distributor.

As a result, there was little that the local bookshop, owned by an expat Frenchman, could do to help. Internet? Really? I have been disappointed by so many books that I have actually held in my hands in bookshops and libraries that I simply haven't the confidence in any of the publishers. And I wouldn't like to lumber any small retailer with a refused delivery. Worse, the French chap had to close shop due to lack of business, and yet this corner of the island is reputed to be a cultural hotspot!

One of my joys on holiday drives back to Britain, other than the French parts, was spending a morning or afternoon in Waterstone's, a wonderful bookshop that dealt very competently with photography. I particularly like travel and photographic monographs, but sometimes, the printing quality was quite awful and I simply wouldn't buy. I'm going back maybe nine years now, but even then there seemed to be a rash of published work from people of whom I had never heard and, worse, whose work was, for me, quite abysmal. One book I bought on trust, Sirens of Costasmeralda(sic) was by Marco Glaviano, a snapper whose work I had long admired. The book wasn't yet available in Britain, and an English neighbour who comes out here regularly had a business associate on holiday in Italy. He asked the chap to see if he could find the book there, which he did, and it then came to me via the first friend's family. What a disappointment for troubling so many people! I realised that parts of the same cloud formation had been cloned over numerous photographs, the girls were shot so stiffly and stylistically that they were caricatures (my opinion, naturally) and, all in all, had I seen the thing first, I'd have passed. Worse, it wasn't cheap! ;-)

If you have the luxury of good bookshops in your neck of the woods, rejoice: you are lucky indeed.

Rob C
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KLaban
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« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2013, 04:29:49 AM »
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If you have the luxury of good bookshops in your neck of the woods, rejoice: you are lucky indeed.

Bookshops in general are thin on the ground, let alone good ones. The market has changed, the internet rules.

Having said that there are often book stalls at markets selling the likes of Taschen at hugely discounted prices.
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Rob C
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« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2013, 08:42:38 AM »
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Bookshops in general are thin on the ground, let alone good ones. The market has changed, the internet rules.

Having said that there are often book stalls at markets selling the likes of Taschen at hugely discounted prices.


Which would indicate that many other people have found themselves nursing damaged pockets too!

Part of the Internet problem, from here at least, is Internet delivery: those companies with the trucks are based in Palma, 60 klicks away, ring you up at the last minute if they happen to be here, making other deliveries in your little town, and if you are not here, too bad. Making postal returns is also a disaster: I wanted to send something by post, insured, and was told sorry, you can only do that from Palma...add 120k of fuel to your costs, pay for parking when you get there, probably an obligatory lunch too, and you may as well seek out one of those used books dealers, but hey, they are in Palma too!

Like cameras, books are hands-on products that require real shops.

Rob C
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Isaac
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« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2013, 11:18:45 AM »
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I rejoice in the luxury of good public libraries.
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Rob C
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« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2013, 01:26:34 PM »
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I rejoice in the luxury of good public libraries.

Back in the day, so did I. That's where I saw my first Haskins and Hamilton books. Libraries, for me, now consist of 'charity' shops which recycle tourists' left-over travel junk!

I stopped reading novels etc. several years ago. Perhaps that's why I type so much. Alternative therapy. But I made up for that as a child, when I read all the stuff that I could find - and there was lots of it around. Kids today can't always say that; maybe they don't even want to read - or can't, poor sods.

But for me, the best way is to own books; the few I have I'd guard until the bitter end.

;-(

Rob C
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Isaac
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« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2013, 05:25:36 PM »
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Just appeared on the new books shelf -- "Gregory Heisler: 50 Portraits: Stories and Techniques from a Photographer's Photographer"


fwiw the local library book shelves look to be about -- 25% How To, 25% History and Collections, 50% Photobook.
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