This will likely be the last post of 2015. I wrote a little less than a year ago my wishes for 2015, some of which came true and I am glad for that. As we end 2015, I write to stoke the idea of learning with some resources I will share as my holiday gift to you all. Some will actually get you things you can keep, and refer to later, others will keep you busy, potentially for hours, even days (don’t say I did not warn you!)
As my friends and readers of this blog know, I am a big fan of photography, its history, tradition, tools, artistry, craft, … In that line of thinking, I would like to introduce you to some photographers. You may or may not “like” their work, but again, I am not sharing them with you for liking or disliking.
I often wonder “should photographs answer questions or raise questions,” and come on the side of the latter. Those that “answer” questions seem to address the same simple question: “What is it?” Where I would like you to think “what else is it,” or “what is it about”. So, I invite you to look at the works of the following photographers with these in mind and with the intention of understanding and appreciating rather than liking or disliking. Some of them are well-known, others probably among their circles, but they all offer something we can appreciate. I do not know most of them personally, or even remotely, and they are not in any particular order or preference, just as I pulled them from my browser. Here we go!
He is a Cuban-born photographer who has a highly recognizable series of camera obscura photographs. Beyond that, his interests are highly eclectic. Make sure to view his camera obscura series but don’t skip the books and maps collection and others.
The publisher of the acclaimed photography magazine, LensWork, and a practicing photographer, writer, thinker. You may have seen the LensWork Magazine Web site or its sister sites, but quite possibly not visited his personal work Web site. It is well worth your time, and you will also be rewarded with downloadable PDF documents that he makes available just to share the love of photography.
Mark is a New England photographer living in Connecticut. His photographs span familiar territory, including Rhode Island, and unfamiliar techniques. I met him at a photography group meeting and got a chance to see his tintype prints, they are gorgeous. His collection, Native American Stonework is part photography, part anthropology, and part detective work.
Kenna was born in England, now living in Seattle, WA. His black-and-white photographs carry his signature style and have been exhibited in many venues. The Web site offers an extensive collection of his photographs, and some of his interviews are in PDF format for saving if you wish to do so.
I better stop introducing photographers whose work I enjoy, the list is long, too long. Let me share a few other interesting Web sites before coming to the free downloads of many e-books (ah-ha! you are interested!) If there is enough interest, I may introduce others in future posts, let me know with your comments. I started introducing some, one at a time, on the sidebar under the “Hear This” section too.
It is a large collection of the works of master photographers. The presentation is clean and extensive. Many photographers, time periods, styles are included in the collection. Fair warning, this site may look a few pages long, but you realize how big it is after several hours. In other words, it is a time sink! Enter at your own risk! (Regrettably, the link to photography-now dot net seems to be broken.)
Life was photography for most of the last century. It feels strange to refer to “the last century” with first-hand experience! Life covered all aspects of life, from icons and celebrities to war and poverty, from movies to sports, from all corners of the world to space. This site will let you explore its vast collection. The time-sink warning should be over your head. Did you know that Walker Evans photographed Rolls Royce’s? See the photograph on the left.
And, we come to the freebies, courtesy of ProDesign Tools, an Adobe partner. Enter your e-mail address, and follow the link to download the free books, bookmark the sources of videos, and do not start watching them until you have a vacation! Not all the books, actually e-books, may be of interest to everyone, but there is enough variety to satisfy all. Watch the videos with curiosity and some level of suspicion, especially when the presenter declares that his work is “epic, sensational, magnificent” and many other self-congratulatory adjectives. Find out what they are doing and question the validity of their claims before trying to reproduce the same.
And here is one from my collection, Infrared Earthscapes, Second Edition. You can download a copy for your viewing any time you like. I think a print version is better, but I cannot make it freely available. If you like to have a print copy, you can get one direct from MagCloud.