The humanity of the moment: Recent Photography books

Taking an image, freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is. — Anonymous

Art has the power to humanise the world, and we think some of the descriptors of this month’s photography books show how photography especially exhibits this power: “quiet but powerful”, “a beautiful and fascinating exploration”, and so many more. This month: read about how a new generation of young women artists are using photography and the internet to explore issues of self-image and female identity and the impact this is having on contemporary art, learn how to produce beautiful astronomical images, see portraits that capture the thoughtful and innocent side of London’s teenagers, and fall in love with 52 wise, healthy, and joyful 100-year-olds.

Syndetics book coverGirl on girl : art and photography in the age of the female gaze / Charlotte Jansen.
“A new generation of female artists is emerging who have grown up in a culture saturated with social media and selfies. This book looks at how young women are using photography and the internet to explore issues of self-image and female identity, and the impact this is having on contemporary art. Forty artists are featured, all of whose principal subject matter is either themselves or other women. Each is accompanied by a short profile based on personal interviews with the author, giving a fascinating insight into this exciting shift in female creativity.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of astrophotography / Ian Morison, Jodrell Bank, University of Manchester.
“In The Art of Astrophotography, astronomer and Popular Astronomy columnist Ian Morison provides the essential foundations of how to produce beautiful astronomical images. Every type of astroimaging is covered, from images of the Moon and planets, to the constellations, star clusters and nebulae within our Milky Way Galaxy and the faint light of distant galaxies. He achieves this through a series of worked examples and short project walk-throughs, detailing the equipment needed – starting with just a DSLR (digital single lens reflex) camera and tripod, and increasing in complexity as the book progresses.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book cover…isms : understanding photography / Emma Lewis.
“Isms: Understanding Photography packs an enormous amount of detail into a handy, attractive guide tracing the evolution of photography through a series of interconnected trends, groups, themes and movements – from the invention of the photographic process to the post-internet age. Organised chronologically, this is a uniquely international, comprehensive guide to photography with concise, readable and jargon-free but scholarly insight into major photographers, movements and themes of the past 170 years.In an age where photography is of more resonance and interest than ever before, Isms: Understanding Photography offers an in-depth and clear exposition of photography for the interested general reader or student.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLondon youth / Julian Mährlein.
“This is a quiet but powerful project capturing the thoughtful and innocent side of London’s teenagers. Too often, inner city kids are portrayed in a negative light or through the lens of fashion photography. Mahrlein’s portraits remind us of the humanity and individuality of a generation that is often overlooked or vilified.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe photo ark : one man’s quest to document the world’s animals / Joel Sartore ; foreword by Harrison Ford ; introduction by Douglas H. Chadwick.
“The lush and unique photography in this book represents National Geographic’s Photo Ark, a major initiative and lifelong project by photographer Joel Sartore to make portraits of the world’s animals–especially those that are endangered. His powerful message, conveyed with humor, compassion, and art: to know these animals is to save them. Sartore is circling the globe, visiting zoos and wildlife rescue centers to create studio portraits of 12,000 species, with an emphasis on those facing extinction. With a goal of photographing every animal in captivizty in the world, he has photographed more than 6,000 already and now, thanks to a multi-year partnership with National Geographic, he may reach his goal.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAging gracefully : portraits of people over 100 / Karsten Thormaehlen.
“Fall in love with 52 wise, healthy, and joyful 100-year-olds in this celebratory and uplifting art book. A beautiful and fascinating exploration of what it is like to be over 100 years old, Aging Gracefully invites readers to look into the face of a century of life experience with portraits of centenarians captured by the compassionate, minimalist lens of photographer Karsten Thormaehlen. The striking photographs are accompanied by short bios of the centenarians, featuring quotes and wisdom on love, food, humor, and living with grace.” (Syndetics summary)

Cuba people two : more street photography from Cuba Street Wellington, Aotearoa-New Zealand / Mary Hutchinson.
Mary Hutchinson is a Wellington based photographer who enjoys photographing urban areas. This is the book accompaniment to her 2017 Cuba People Two exhibition, at Matchbox Studios, Wellington. (Information obtained from artist’s website)

Photographing ethereal beauty – New Photography books

Here is a diverse selection for the end of year, from fashion to astrophotography, food to travel photography. And while photography books tend to be heavy to carry, our online photography magazines won’t weigh you down on your holiday!

Syndetics book coverDiverse beauty
“New York-based photographer Alexi Lubomirski has become an established name within the fashion industry, shooting for such publications as Harper’s Bazaar , Vogue and GQ. It was after shooting Lupita Nyong’o that Lubomirski was struck by the homogeneity of the subjects he’d been hired to shoot professionally. Often when he submitted a list of models he was interested in shooting, responses would range along the lines of “we love her, but…,” “her hair is a problem,” “she is too dark” or “she is too light to make a statement.” In Diverse Beauty, Lubomirski aims to move beyond the underrepresentation of women from a range of ethnicities in fashion media. This handsome volume of cinematic fashion portraiture is also a small step in the direction of changing societal norms.” (Syndetics)

C51iJshvZCqL__SX385_BO1,204,203,200_apturing the world : the art and practice of travel photography
“Having been a professional photographer for the last 30 years, the author has taken every genre of travel photo, from people and architecture, to landscapes and nature. He takes you through the process of taking a successful travel photo from beginning to end, using his own spectacular images as examples. These examples demonstrate how it’s not just about technical skill; the best photographers put huge effort into getting themselves into a position where the potential for great images is maximized. This gloriously illustrated book will show you how to take your best travel photos.” (From Amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverAstrophotography : the most spectacular astronomical images of the Universe / Rhodri Evans.
“Our enduring fascination in our solar system and the wonders of the universe is now being fed by images of breathtaking detail. The very best images captured by the new generation of terrestrial telescopes, orbiting telescopes and deep-space probes and landers have been collected in this magnificent volume. Detailed captions explain the equipment and techicalities of producing such images, which are not only mesmerising but also provide a huge amount of information about the geology and atmospheres of celestial bodies, and the formation of distant galaxies.” (From Amazon.com)

nzcamera-newNew Zealand camera : a showcase of outstanding photographic images from members of the Photographic Society of New Zealand
“New Zealand Camera is the flagship publication showcasing a collection of outstanding photographic images from members of the Photographic Society of New Zealand. From landscapes to wildlife, plants to people, sports and creative imagery, New Zealand Camera is compiled yearly by a dedicated editorial team of photographers and PSNZ members.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPeter Lindbergh : a different vision on fashion photography
“When German photographer Peter Lindbergh shot five young models in downtown New York City in 1989, he produced not only the iconic British Vogue January 1990 cover but also the birth certificate of the supermodels. The image marked the beginning of a new fashion era and a new understanding of female beauty. This book gathers more than 400 images from four decades of Lindbergh’s photography. Raw and seductive at once, we see how Lindbergh’s trademark monochrome pictures redefined standards of beauty by emphasizing spirit and personality as much as looks, celebrating the elegance and sensuality of older women, and privileging natural and authentic beauty in an era of pervasive retouching.” (From Amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverLittle tables : anytime breakfasts from around the world
“From congee to kedgeree to rösti, Little Tables brings together 72 kids’ breakfast recipes from 32 countries on six continents. It makes it easy for parents to bring a world of taste into their family’s mealtimes, helping to create shared memories of culinary and cultural discovery and fun. Little Tables is a collaboration initiated by photographer Vanessa Lewis, and features portraits put together by international fashion, food and hair stylists, and fun tidbits of information about each country. A delightful feast for the eyes!” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverFocus in Photography: Master the Advanced Techniques That Will Change Your Photography Forever
“Focus is an often overlooked but powerful creative tool for photographers, made all the more powerful and accessible in the digital era. In his latest book John Neel takes you into an exploration of advanced focus that will greatly enhance your skill as a photographer. These pages will show you everything, from high-end techniques to create infinite focus, through to using it as an artistic tool, directing your viewer’s eye around your photographic composition. This book will be a valuable asset for any student, enthusiast looking for a new creative angle, commercial product photographer, or online traders.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe Photoshop darkroom 2 : creative digital transformations / Harold Davis, Phyllis Davis.
“Picking up where the authors’ best-selling first book left off, The Photoshop Darkroom 2: Advanced Digital Post-Processing will show you everything you need to know to take your digital imaging skills to the next level. Great photographers know that the best images begin well before the shutter clicks, and certainly well before Photoshop boots up. Harold takes a step back, and shares his helpful tips for capturing the most compelling images possible. You’ll also find complete coverage of important topics such as compositing, working with layers, and HDR.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverComplete Photography : Understand Cameras to Take, Edit and Share Better Photos
“This is the book for everyone who wants to take great photos but doesn’t know where to begin. This fresh, accessible guide to photography covers everything from types of camera and photographic techniques to digital processing. With it, you’ll learn how to compose a shot for visual impact, focus it to attract the viewer’s eye, and expose it so every detail is captured. Over 500 images and illustrations include not only inspiring aspirational pictures, but images that aren’t ideal (and why), helping the reader to improve fast. With clear explanations in everyday language, and carefully selected examples and masterclasses to illustrate every point, Gatcum brings a fantastic photography within everyone’s grasp. There’s even a section on creating a retro-style film darkroom at home.” (Syndetics)

Beyond books, another source of photographic information is the Press. You will find below a sample of titles your can read FREE with your library card on PressReader.

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Here are two articles recently published in Professional Photography magazine on Peter Lindbergh’s latest retrospective exhibition and accompanying book and in the Guardian, on the LagosPhoto festival, two of the many titles available on PressReader.


Professional PhotographyLagos

 

 

 

 

 

From Vinyl to silk – New Photography books

As our new vinyl collection makes it début, this month’s photography selection features a 448 page new book dedicated to vinyl covers and the artists behind them. We also welcome back in our collection John Berger’s seminal Another Way of Telling and delve into the world of silk, taffeta and super models.

Syndetics book coverTotal records : photography and the art of the album cover
“The history of photography is teeming with portraits of musicians made iconic by their album covers: Thelonious Monk by W. Eugene Smith, Miles Davis by Irving Penn, Grace Jones by Jean-Paul Goude, Laurie Anderson by Robert Mapplethorpe. The history of album cover art also includes collaborations between prominent figures, such as Mick Rock and David Bowie, Annie Leibovitz and John Lennon, and Robert Frank with the Rolling Stones. Images like the Abbey Road crosswalk are deeply inscribed in our collective memory, yet few details are known about the photographer. This book is a compendium of electrifying images and the albums they grace.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverWilliam Eggleston portraits
“So many people take those simple snapshots of life, but there’s something about Eggleston that no one can match.” –Sofia Coppola.
The eminent American photographer William Eggleston (b. 1939) was a pioneer in exploring the artistic potential of color photography. Eggleston made a name for himself with his eccentric, unexpected compositions of everyday life that were nonetheless rife with implied narrative, elevating the commonplace to art. This sumptuously illustrated book features Eggleston’s masterful portraits, including many familiar and beloved images as well as some previously unseen photographs from his long and productive career.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverPeter Lindbergh : A Different Vision on Fashion Photography
“When German photographer Peter Lindbergh shot five young models in downtown New York City in 1989, he produced not only the iconic British Vogue January 1990 cover but also the birth certificate of the supermodels. The image didn’t just bring revered faces together for the first time; it marked the beginning of a new fashion era and a new understanding of female beauty. To mark a major retrospective at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, this book gathers more than 400 images from four decades of Lindbergh’s photography to celebrate his unique and game-changing storytelling and the new romantic and narrative vision it brought to art and fashion.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverFocus : the secret, sexy, sometimes sordid world of fashion photographers
“Before Instagram was an art form, fashion photographers and the models they made famous were pop culture royalty. From the postwar covers of Vogue to the triumph of the digital image, the fashion photographer sold not only clothes but ideals of beauty and visions of perfect lives. Focus probes the lives, hang-ups, and artistic triumphs of more than a dozen of fashion photography’s greatest visionaries such as Richard Avedon, Irving Penn or Helmut Newtown to name but a few.  An unprecedented look at an eccentric and seductive profession and the men and women who practice it on the treacherous shifting sands of pop and fashion culture.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe importance of elsewhere : Philip Larkin’s photographs
“Philip Larkin was a keen amateur photographer and through his life he made images of the people, places and things that meant most to him. The Importance of Elsewhere gathers the best of Larkin’s photographic work, divided into short thematic chapters arranged in chronological order. The book shows how Larkin, as an individual, as a writer and indeed as a photographer, developed an acute sensitivity to all aspects of the world around him, from his love of open uninhabited landscapes and empty churches to his mixed feelings about crowds. There are also fascinating portraits of those people who were closest to Larkin, including his lovers, his mother and his literary peers.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverAnother way of telling
“In one of the most eloquent accounts of photography ever devised (originally published in 1982 and unavailable for many years), the writer John Berger and the photographer Jean Mohr set out to understand the fundamental nature of photography and how it makes its impact. Asking a range of questions – What is a photograph? What do photographs mean? How can they be used? – they give their answers in terms of a photograph as ‘a meeting place where the interests of the photographer, the photographed, the viewer and those who are using the photography are often contradictory’. A classic, now available as an ebook.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverFifty Paths to Creative Photography: Style & Technique
“In keeping with the best tradition of Freeman’s writing, this isn’t a technical manual looking at camera settings, but a volume which will encourage you to explore what makes great photography. In Freeman’s own words: “There’s a long line of opinion, from Plato through Kant, that holds creativity to be unteachable, and to be the province of genius.” (Syndetics)

Cuba People: Street Photography from Cuba Street Wellington, Aotearoa-New ZealandCuba people street photography from Cuba Street Wellington “Wellington’s urban environment is rich with opportunities to observe and capture life in the city. With the black and white photographic images in the Cuba People series I aim to celebrate the everyday, the surprising, the humorous, the beautiful, and the sad aspects of people out and about in this unique street, in central Wellington.” (Syndetics)

View Newtown Forever by MARY HUTCHINSONNewtown forever : street photography festival series 2016
“My photography collection Newtown Forever (Main Series) captures some of the human moments that contribute to present day Newtown’s well-recognised cultural diversity – be they facial expressions, clothing styles, architectural features or everyday activities. These combine with the myriad detail of urban visual patterns, and other graphic elements, in making my black and white street photographs. My images emphasise the diversity, universality, poignancy and fragility of human connectedness.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverLonely Planet’s guide to travel photography
“The best-selling Lonely Planet’s Guide to Travel Photography is written by internationally renowned travel photographer Richard I’Anson. He shares his wealth of experience and knowledge about travel photography in this jargon-free guide to taking better photographs. This new edition has been thoroughly updated and refreshed with up-to-the minute advice, information and instructions on how to take amazing travel photographs using the latest digital cameras. It also includes tips on how to get great results from smartphones, DSLR cameras, drones and GoPro action cameras.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe five-minute fix : 200 tips for improving your photography and growing your business
“Unlike many books for “beginners”, Dale takes photographers from the beginning stages and continues nurturing them into starting a business and becoming a professional. His approach of providing a lot of bite-sized chunks of information on photography techniques, business, and marketing in one book is truly unique. For the photographer who wants both business and photography knowledge, this single book takes the place of two! Plus, with Dale’s accessible, conversational voice, you’ll not only find the book informative-but fun and engaging, too.” (Syndetics)