What inspiring photography book did you read or buy recently?
I didn't see a thread like this, so I thought I start one. It is not meant to promote your own book or bookstore. So please no commercial stuff (there are other threads for that). It is just about telling others what book you discovered recently and bought - new or second hand. A book you saw or read about photography or a photographer that struck you. A book that inspired you and you'd like to share with us.
Let me start this thing.
I recently went to the town of Utrecht, The Netherlands. There I found a nice, small book store called Aleph Books, with interesting (used & antique) books about literature, philosophy, art, etc. They even had a whole cabinet with photography books. None of the "DIY digital photography" stuff, no, all good books about photo art, good artists, history of photography, autobiographies, etc. So I spend about an hour or so looking at all the books and selected four to take home with me. One is a thick book about the history of photography in The Netherlands (1850-2006) with some beautiful prints. An other one is a large book with all the images from Alfred Stieglitz Camera work (800 pages). The third booklet was from a Dutch museum with old photos from the Pictorialism aera in The Netherlands (1900-1930). A period I like.
But the book that really surprised me was: The Water's Edge, Sally Glass (USA, 1995).
It's a hardbound book with square images beautiful printed. No technical data, just fine images and an essay as an introduction. I was struck by the atmosphere in the images - maybe the combination between contrast and softness of the prints? Quite inspirational for my landscape photography.
Here are three images from the book:
Writer James Salter wrote an interesting essay as a introduction for this photo book. A quote:
"These are photographs that require a viewer; they would perish from loneliness otherwise. They summon memories, vague desires, the mystery of life and our inability to grasp it."
I never heard of Sally Gall before (my loss), but I really like here work. Here website: http://www.sallygall.com
I wonder what camera or lens she used and how these images were printed. But then, maybe I shouldn't ask about the technical stuff, just simply enjoy the viewing of these images ...
Bert from Holland
"Have fun and catch that light beam!"
Bert from Holland
my blog: http://thetoadmen.blogspot.nl
my Linkedin pinhole group: http://tinyurl.com/pinholegroup
* I'm an analogue enthusiast, trying not to fall into the digital abyss.
* My favorite cameras: Hasselblad SWC, Leica SL, Leica M7, Russian FKD 18x24, Bronica SQ-B and RF645, Rolleiflex T2, Nikon F4s, Agfa Clack and my pinhole cameras
Whilst it's not about actual photography, Insisting on the Impossible, the biography of Edwin Land - inventor of Polaroid photography, is a very inspiring book.
"People who say things won't work are a dime a dozen. People who figure out how to make things work are worth a fortune" - Dave Rat.
"A Staggering Revolution" -culture of photography in the Thirties, by John Raeburn.
My copy of Papersafe from Catlabs was fairly inspiring (to me, at least)
An awful lot of electrons were terribly inconvenienced in the making of this post.
Here, Far Away
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Barry Thornton's Edge of Darkness is the newest one I purchased and I love it.
David Plowden: Vanishing Point Fifty Years of Photographs has some of my favorite photographs in it. His photos in the steel mills are imo nothing short of amazing.
Let it be know I work with a steel company as a primary job so I may be bias.
I recently read Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher, a biography of Edward Curtis. It was very interesting and I enjoyed it.
Photo Nomad by David Douglas Duncan is my latest book. It is an autobiography in words and pictures. I had never heard of DDD before I got this book. He is a great photographer who has led a very interesting and full life.
Received yesterday "Albert Renger-Patzsch: Photographer of Objectivity". He was a contemporary of Ed Weston and Paul Strand, and had similar viewpoints. A quote from his Goals: "Let us therefore leave art to the artists and create with the means of photography photographs that have value because of their photographic qualities - without borrowing from art".
van Huyck Photo
"Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"
Self Portraits by Vivian Maier-she was a nanny in Chicago who's street photography work was recently rediscovered. She had no formal training in photography but what an eye!
"He took to writing poetry and visiting the elves: and though many shook their heads and touched their foreheads and said 'Poor old Baggins!' and though few believed any of his tales, he remained very happy till the end of his days, and those were extraordinarily long "- JRR Tolkien, ' The Hobbit '.