Feast your eyes on our latest Photography books

Feast Your Eyes

Don’t you just love all the pretty colours? Allow our most recent photography books to highlight the beauty of the colours all around us. Look back on iconic images re-imagined with colour, or look closer at the beauty of your fruit and vegetables. Look through the lens and delve into lives of people on the street, in the past, in the deep south, or the arctic circle. Take a look at these exquisite photography books and see something you have never seen before.

Book Jacket for: Feast your eyesFeast your eyes / Wright, Brittany
“Inspired by the effortless beauty of her ingredients; fresh fruits, vegetables, and more, Wright created the Instagram hashtag #foodgradients to showcase the splendor of nature’s edible rainbows. Each exquisite, neatly ordered photograph is a pleasure to get lost in. With a sleek, minimalist design, Feast Your Eyes is a celebration of the earth’s bounty, a breath of fresh air, and an inspiration for everyone looking for joy in the simple things.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Retrographic : history's most exciting images transformed into living colourRetrographic : history’s most exciting images transformed into living colour / Carroll, Michael D
“The the careful selection of striking images and dedicated colourization research, Retrographic  will take you on a visual tour of the distant past. Many of these moments are already burned into our collective memory through the power of photography as shared by people across the 190-year long age of the Image. And now, these visual time capsules are collected together for the first time and presented with living colour. (Book Jacket)

Book Jacket for: The street philosophy of Garry WinograndThe street philosophy of Garry Winogrand / Dyer, Geoff
“Modeled on John Szarkowski’s classic book Atget, The Street Philosophy of Garry Winogrand is a masterfully curated selection of one hundred photographs from the Winogrand archive at the Center for Creative Photography, with each image accompanied by an original essay. This inimitable combination of photographer and writer, images and text, itself offers what Dyer claims for Winogrand’s photography–an education in seeing.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Wander love : lessons, tips and inspiration from a solo travellerWander love : lessons, tips and inspiration from a solo traveller / Daquinag, Aubrey
“Author Aubrey Daquinag is a travel blogger and photographer, most often found posting her adventures on her blog ‘The Love Assembly’ from all corners of the globe. Featuring her incredible photography that shows you a world where travel meets style, Wander Love is the perfect mix of style, substance and travel adventures to inspire your own.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Real estate photography for everybodyReal estate photography for everybody / Castle, Ron
“In this book, Ron Castle introduces you to the skills you need to succeed in real estate photography. You’ll gain insight into some basics of the business, and you’ll learn what kind of equipment you’ll need to do the job. You’ll also learn  what not to photograph, how to produce strong compositions, and find suggestions for an efficient and effective post-processing workflow.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Berenice Abbott : a life in photographyBerenice Abbott : a life in photography / Van Haaften, Julia
“Abbott’s 60-year career established her not only as a master of American photography but also as a teacher, writer, archivist, and inventor. A teenage rebel from Ohio, Abbott escaped to Paris before returning to New York as the Roaring Twenties ended. Turning later to science, culminating in work important to America’s 1950s “space race”. This biography secures Abbott’s place in the histories of photography and modern art while framing her accomplishments as a female artist and entrepreneur.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: I am InuitI am Inuit / Adams, Brian
“For around four million people, the Arctic region is neither a curiosity, nor is it untouched wilderness: It is home. Since 2015, photographer Brian Adams has been traveling through Alaska, capturing the Inuit and their individual stories. This project has the aim of promoting understanding, dismantling stereotypes as well as misperceptions and connecting the world with Alaskan Inuits, and the Arctic, through common humanity.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Sally Mann : a thousand crossingsSally Mann : a thousand crossings
“Using her deep love of her homeland (Virginia) and her knowledge of its historically fraught heritage, she asks powerful, provocative questions about history, identity, race, and religion-that reverberate across geographic and national boundaries. Organized into family, landscape, battlefields, legacy, and mortality-and including many works not previously exhibited or published, this is a sweeping overview of Mann’s artistic achievement of the past four decades.” (Catalogue)

Book Jacket for: 1968 : a revolutionary year in photographs1968 : a revolutionary year in photographs
“1968 has gone down in history as the year of social and political movements, of global protests against the existing social model. Tens of thousands marched the streets, calling for an end to war and oppression. There were space missions and epochal murders, while Hippie culture and the Beat Generation ran wild and the wave of pacifism conquered the theater. This book presents images which best represent 1968 in every context. The talent of the best photographers of the time, retraces and recounts this fateful year, so full of major events.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Flora magnifica : the art of flowers in four seasonsFlora magnifica : the art of flowers in four seasons / Azuma, Makoto
“This sumptuous book is the product of a longstanding collaboration between renowned flower artist Makoto Azuma and botanical photographer Shunsuke Shiinoki. The result is a series of dense, luxuriant images, rich in colour and texture, in which nature and artifice are skilfully mingled. The four chapters are themed according to the cycle of the seasons: the freshness of spring, the exuberance of summer, the fading grandeur of autumn and the deepening shadows of winter.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

An evening with astrophotographer Mark Gee

Have you ever sat under the stars, gazed at the night sky and wished you could capture it? Seen photos of the milky way, looked down at your camera and wondered how on earth they did it?

If that sounds like you, then come along to the Central Library and hear Wellington based astrophotographer Mark Gee talk about his photographic journey and share his story of how he came to be the self-taught award winning photographer he is today!

A post shared by Mark Gee (@theartofnight) on Swing by the library after work on Wednesday April 4th at 6pm to meet the man himself and hear about the Art of Night, and learn how you can get started, how to use social media as a marketing tool, and how you can continue to develop as a photographer.

Mark will be talking for about 30 minutes so there will be plenty of question time as well!

Looking for more resources for your own photography?

Check out the free online course available through Lynda.com, with courses on everything from Photography 101, to Exploring Composition, How to Create a Portfolio, using Photoshop, and even Aerial Photography with Drones and a how to on Landscape Photography: Iceland!

All you need to login in your Library card number and your last name.

You can also take a look at our Photography Recent Picks Blog or check out our new collection on Overdrive: Get Creative With Design & Photography

10 Books to Help You Reach Your Photography Goals in 2018!

This new year you could become the photographer you’ve always dreamed you could be! Whether you want to be “instafamous” for your epic travel photos, launch that online business or just take better photos of your food. Reach for the stars, literally, have a go at astro-photography, or fine tune your existing skills with exposure, whatever your focus, these 10 books will help you scratch “become an awesome photographer” off your New Year’s resolutions list!

Syndetics book coverFashion & lifestyle photography : succeed in the commercial world and become a stand-out photographer / Dixie Dixon.
“Based on the talks Dixie Dixon, a Nikon Brand Ambassador, has given to crowds at major US trade shows, she reveals how to succeed in this exciting marketplace. From finding your vision, to building your dream team, this book will provide you with the essential gear and know-how to capture the looks of the media world that leap off the page or screen.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLonely Planet’s guide to travel photography / Richard I’Anson.
“Written by internationally renowned travel photographer Richard I’Anson, he shares his wealth of experience and knowledge about travel photography in photorecentthis jargon-free guide to taking better photographs. Thoroughly updated and refreshed with 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 summary)

Syndetics book coverFood photography : a beginner’s guide to creating appetizing images / Corinna Gisseman.
“Whether you want to create great food images for your blog or break into the world of commercial food photography, Food Photography is the perfect place to start your journey. Corinna Gissemann, a professional food photographer, walks you through everything you need to know, starting with a primer on equipment and exposure, followed by a detailed explanation of the extremely important roles that light, composition, and styling play in food photography.” ( Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe five-minute fix : 200 tips for improving your photography and growing your business / Dale Benfield.
“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!” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverComplete photography : the all-new guide to getting the best possible photos from any camera / Chris Gatcum.
“Whether you’re a complete beginner, a casual snapper or a seasoned photographer, there is a lot to be learned from this extensive photography guide. Take the guesswork out of your photography and understand not just what to do with your camera, but how and why this affects the photos you take. Whether you own an SLR, film camera or a compact digital camera, learn how to take the best photos possible.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of astrophotography / Ian Morison, Jodrell Bank, University of Manchester.
“Join astronomer and columnist Ian Morison as he provides the essential foundations of how to produce beautiful astronomical images. From images of the Moon and planets, to the constellations, star clusters and nebulae, journey through a series of worked examples and short project walk-throughs, detailing the equipment needed, starting with a DSLR, camera and tripod, and increasing in complexity as the book progresses.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe smartphone photography guide : shoot, edit, experiment, share / Peter Cope.
“Smartphones have put powerful cameras, literally, in our pockets and encouraged us to document our lives in ever-increasing detail. But do we realize their full potential? Instructive, inspirational and updated with all the latest on VR, selfies, and the best apps, become the best photographer you can be! Suitable for all general smartphone users, compatible with iOS, Android, and Windows phones.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPhotography exposure / David Präkel.
“Offering a detailed guide to using exposure for expressive purposes, this is an invaluable reference tool to all students and practitioners of photography.The second edition includes new images, as well as all new case studies and practical assignments – using examples from a range of international artists. The book has also been updated and restructured to take into account the technical innovations since it first published in 2009.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOne face, fifty ways : the portrait photography ideas book / Imogen Dyer & Mark Wilkinson.
“Whichever side of the camera you like to be on, this book will show you how – with some simple camera techniques and inexpensive items of wardrobe – you can revolutionize your portfolio. You won’t need to spend a fortune on props, studios or equipment; learn how to create an exciting, varied portfolio of fresh portrait photography.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe practical illustrated encyclopedia of digital photography : step-by-step guide to taking great photographs / Steve Luck.
“Expert advice from starting out to advanced computer techniques, with practice assignments and 1000 photographs.” (Syndetics summary)

What the soul feels: 10 new Photography books

They say, that photography, like art, it is less what the eye sees and more what the soul feels, and we couldn’t agree more. So whether your soul feels the mists of the mountains, the droplets of water from a dog shaking his coat, vintage cameras, cityscapes, fashion, selfies or satellite imagery, we’ve got you covered! Check out these 10 new photography books from our collection.

Syndetics book coverPawtraits / Ken Drake.
Pawtraits is a stunning photographic collection capturing man’s best friends at their most adorable, playful, mischievous and downright lovable selves. Each shot is an artwork, a beautiful, personal ‘tail’ of the love between a dog and their human, captured in Zoo Studio’s signature style.  Animal lovers & photographic art connoisseurs alike will fall in love with this book. A portion of the sales of Pawtraits will be donated to the RSPCA.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPhotographs from the edge : a master photographer’s insights on capturing an extraordinary world / Art Wolfe with Rob Sheppard
“Legendary nature photographer Art Wolfe presents an intimate, behind-the-scenes guide to the experiences, decisions, and methods that helped him capture images from some of the most exciting locations across the globe. From endangered species to cultural celebrations to natural wonders, Wolfe brings each subject to life through his stunning photography and the stories he shares in this one-of-a-kind photo safari.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverI love my selfie / essay by Ilan Stavans ; auto-portraits by ADÁL.
“What explains our current obsession with selfies? In I Love My Selfie noted cultural critic Ilan Stavans explores the selfie’s historical and cultural roots by discussing everything from Greek mythology and Shakespeare to Andy Warhol, James Franco, and Pope Francis. He sees selfies as tools people use to disguise or present themselves as spontaneous and casual. Provocative and engaging, this book will change the way readers think about this unavoidable phenomenon of twenty-first-century life.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMagnum photobook : the Catalogue Raisonné / texts by Fred Ritchin & Carole Naggar.
“Including unpublished behind-the scenes material, together with ephemera from the photographers’ archives about the making of their books. With an introduction by Fred Ritchin and texts by Carole Naggar, this book explores the evolution of the photobook, as well as the important role that Magnum has played in the history of documentary photography.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAging gracefully : portraits of people over 100 / Karsten Thormaehlen.
“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)

Syndetics book coverOn reading / Steve McCurry ; foreword by Paul Theroux.
“Young or old, rich or poor, people everywhere read. This homage to the beauty and seductiveness of reading brings together a collection of photographs taken by Steve McCurry over four decades of travel and is introduced by award-winning writer, Paul Theroux. McCurry’s mesmerizing images of the universal human act of reading are an acknowledgement and tribute to the overwhelming power of the written word.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEarth from space / by Yann Arthus-Bertrand ; translated from the French by Nicholas Elliott ; GoodPlanet Foundation.
“With more than 150 breathtaking satellite photographs, Yann Arthus-Bertrand, an aerial photographer and environmental activist, discusses the impact of deforestation, urban sprawl, ocean pollution, and more. Earth from Space ‘s compelling selection of satellite images raises important questions about our future, while showcasing the planet’s beauty, leaving no doubt that it is something crucial to protect.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverErik Madigan Heck : old future / texts by Justine Picardie and Susan Bright.
“In contemporary fashion photography, Erik Madigan Heck is something of an anomaly – a very successful anomaly who steers his own path. His work is elegant and unashamedly beautiful, exploring the intersections of fashion, painting and classical portraiture. Working with natural light and combining in-camera effects with digital post-production, he produces evocative and seductive images that are both timeless and futuristic.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRetro photo : an obsession : a personal selection of vintage cameras and the photographs they take / David Ellwand.
“From the pinhole to the Pentax, Retro Photo: An Obsession is a visual journey through the history of photography, highlighting some of the iconic cameras of the analog era. At once an accessible guide to vintage cameras, a highly personal take on photographic history, and a celebration of classic design, here is a book that takes the fear out of old-style photography and puts the fun back in.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverNew York serenade / Ciro Frank Schiappa, photographs ; Michele Primi, texts.
New York Serenade is homage to the city of New York. The project consists of fifty pictures that share stories we believe are relevant to describe the continuous changing of the historical sites, the urban landscape, and the different forms of art that the city itself produced over the years. Our aim is to write a story about history, art, music, and New York City, and create a journey through this tradition, around historical places that are holding memories of the past while the future is written somewhere else.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Photography, by robots and humans

Syndetics book coverThis is Mars
This gorgeous collection of images of Mars were sent by the probes Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Pathfinder, and Mars Express, as well as Martian rovers. The result is an absolute gem, for photography, astronomy and geology enthusiasts alike. Random images taken by robots, creating incredible art. Beauty in the factual, curated by great names of photography, compiled into a lavishly produced monograph sure to captivate.

Syndetics book coverSite specific / Olivo Barbieri.
“Site specific is a summary of Olivo Barieri’s ten-year project to record the world’s cities in aerial photographs. The book offers a trhilling survey of thirty-six cities throughout the world. At the same time, it presents a narrative of Barbieri’s evolving approach to photography and his ideas about the nature of the medium. Presented chronogically, the photographs begin with the distinct “tilt-shift” photographs of Italian cities with which Barbieri first established his reputation, and lauched a popular stylistic movement for selective-focus photographs. During the series, he later introduced other devices and approches to  distort perceived reality to dramatic effect, such as playing with color, registration and the deletion or discoloring of particular details. The result is a remarkable photo essay about twenty-first century urban space and about photography itself.” (Cover)

Syndetics book coverKeeping time : the photographs of Don Hunstein : the unseen archive of Columbia records
“It is rare that a coffee-table book would seem too short. But with every image captured by record label photographer Hunstein in this volume, you’ll want more: more shots of a pensive, nervous Aretha Franklin; more outtakes from The Freewheeling Bob Dylan cover shoot; more of Miles Davis looking self-aware in a mink coat; and extra images of Billie Holiday during a recording session. New York Times music critic Pareles skillfully curates the archival photos by Hunstein, who silently documented the art of creation before “selfies” and branding. The images reveal the evolution of access and image in pop culture: musicians who were snapped in awkward poses before the fame and those who preened after it, never to be caught candid again. It’s as good a meditation on pop music and pop culture as is likely to be released this year. Verdict?: Fine arts librarians and special collections archivists may find this a worthwhile complementary research tool; it’s also an entertaining browse through history.” (Abridged from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverUnseen McQueen
“Every image unseen. Stunning photography of the King of Cool. These stunning images of Steve McQueen taken by photography legend Barry Feinstein – at the race track, on the set of Bullitt relaxing with friends – have all remained completely unseen until now and are reproduced for the first time in magnificent quality in this volume. Feinstein was a close personal friend of McQueen’s and his photos convey an intimacy rarely experienced in shots of the star. Stunning photography. Not to be missed.” (From Amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverThe New York times magazine photographs
“Edited by Kathryn Ryan, the publication’s director of photography, this book features more than 400 hundred images, organised into five sections: Portraits, Documentary, Photo-Illustration, Style and Projects. The photographs represent a gamu of modes, from hard-hitting war documents to conceptual work by contemporary artists: from elaborately constructed tableaux to the most simple portraits, lit by a single bulb. The volume’s final chapter presents a visual index of more than 250 Magazine tearsheets, where the photographsncan be considered in their original published context.
This book offers an unprecedented insider’s look into the workings of one of the most dynamic forums for photography anywhere, and examines the evolving language of both the medium and its journalistic context.” (From book cover)

Syndetics book coverHollywood in Kodachrome : 1940-1949 / David Wills and Stephen Schmidt.
“Curated from the luscious Kodachrome stock of the 1940s, renowned preservationist David Wills presents a dazzling Hollywood collection as never before printed. Drawn from Wills’s vast collection of first-generation negatives and prints, meticulously scanned and gorgeously printed, these icons of film and style are brought back to life almost more vibrantly than they were ever seen at the time. Now, with Hollywood in Kodachrome, Wills offers a stunning gallery of hundreds of impossibly lush, full-colour photos of the stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Photographed using late 1940s sheet Kodachrome a film stock that remains legendary for its tonal range, colour accuracy, and detail the silver screen’s elite are brilliantly captured in unparalleled quality. Vividly portrayed in luxuriant detail, the stars in Hollywood in Kodachrome include Elizabeth Taylor, Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth, Fred Astaire, Humphrey Bogart, Bette Davis, Frank Sinatra, Joan Crawford, Gregory Peck, Lucille Ball, William Holden, and many more. Including a foreword by Rhonda Fleming, and featuring more than 200 photos from classic films and publicity shoots, Hollywood in Kodachrome is a magnificent culmination of the 1940s’ most beloved icons.” (Publisher description)

Syndetics book coverHome truths : photography and motherhood
“This beautiful and striking book examines one of the most enduring subjects in the history of picture-making: the image of the mother. Focusing on the work of twelve international photographic artists (Janine Antoni, Elina Brotherus, Elinor Carucci, Ana Casas Broda, Ann Fessler, Tierney Gearon, Fred Hüning, Miyako Ishiuchi, Leigh Ledare, Annu Palakunnathu Matthew, Katie Murray and Hanna Putz), the publication challenges the stereotypical or sentimental views of motherhood handed down by traditional depictions, exploring instead how photography can be used to address changing conditions of power, gender, domesticity, the maternal body and female identity. ” (From book cover)

PHOTOGRAPHY IS EVERYTHING

Photography has the ability to take many forms and is often mistaken for the subject it depicts. Le Corbusier knew that very well and made the most of what at the beginning of his career was a new medium. Architecture, being such a visually striking field, was destined to have an strong relashionship with the medium. Another such match made in heaven is that of fashion and photography. The latest anthology on fashion photography featured this month is a testament to this marvellous interaction, fashion designers almost creating to court the camera and the camera in turn, revelling in the curves, folds, textures and shapes at play.  We  review works of master photographers such as Helmut Newton and Bill Brandt but also the first monograph dedicated to the young Ryan McGinley, a new comer set to become one of the greats of his generation. Two books revealing some of the prowesses made possible with todays’ technologies completes this month’s “picture”.

 syndetics-lc Le Corbusier and the power of photography
“Le Corbusier’s development was inextricably connected to the rise of the centurys most popular visual medium: photography. Marking the 125th anniversary of the architects birth in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, this remarkable book traces the many ways in which he used photography to define and disseminate his work and ideas around the world. This unique portrait presents the architect and his work in six chapters, each by an expert in a particular facet of Le Corbusiers work: a photographic biography; his secret travel photographs; the ways in which the architect used photography for promotion; an examination of his approach to the printed page; an overview of his use of large-scale imagery in his buildings and exhibitions; and contemporary photographic interpretations of his work. Because Le Corbusiers buildings are usually shown in a documentary manner, the candid, personal, artistic and often unexpected images that appear in this volume offer new insights and ways to appreciate the facets of the man behind his works.” (From Amazon.co.uk)

syndetics-lc New Fashion Photography
“The 21st century has brought about seismic changes in photography, technology, fashion, and art. At the nexus of these exciting movements is a group of fashion photographers who are breaking ground in a variety of ways, including cultural referencing, digital imaging, photo manipulation, and the use of new media. This stunningly illustrated book profiles more than 30 artists from around the world through exclusive interviews, commentary, and beautiful images. From Nick Knight’s paint-soaked portraits of Lady Gaga and Sean+Seng’s dangerous reworkings of Lana de Rey to the body-image subversions of Alice Hawkins’s and neo-surrealist fantasies of Miles Aldridge, new fashion portraiture is challenging conventional ideas of beauty by confronting us with the unexpected. Throughout the book, these artists explore new avenues previously off-limits to fashion photography, opening it up to thrilling possibilities. Including: Ruven Afanador, Miles Aldridge, Aram Bedrossian, Daniele + Iango, Bruno Dayan, Pierre Debusschere, Sean Ellis, Rene Habermacher, Alice Hawkins, Daniel Jackson, Yasunari Kikuma, Nick Knight, Paola Kudacki, LaRoache Brothers, Serge Leblon, Markus + Indrani, Takahiro Ogawa, Paco Peregrín, Rankin, Eugenio Recuenco, Tim Richardson, Kourtney Roy, Sanchez And Mongiello, Daniel Sannwald, Sean And Seng, Wing Shya, Chadwick Tyler, Yelena Yemchuk.” (From Amazon.co.uk)

syndetics-lcWhistle for the Wind
“In 2002, two years after Ryan McGinley, then a student, staged his first exhibition of photographs in a SoHo gallery, he created inexpensive handmade books of a sampling of his work titled The Kids Are Alright. Those books eventually found their way to Sylvia Wolf, then curator of photography at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, who gave him a solo show a year later, making him the youngest artist to have a one-person exhibition at the museum.
What critics, curators, and collectors would quickly discover was an artist who understood and chronicled his own generation as no other had. Compared early on to masters of photography and film, such as Nan Goldin and Larry Clark, McGinley’s early work documents the lives of his friends—the hedonistic exploits of youth culture but without the dark undertone of earlier artists who mined similar themes. As he evolved, he began to create scenarios where he could explore different ideas (aesthetic and otherwise), and this led to his infamous summer-long road trips, which he conducted for five years, capturing a myriad of twentysomethings enjoying each other and their surroundings. In addition to these seminal works, McGinley is known for his chronicling of the singer Morrissey’s sold-out tours around the world. This is the first major volume on this important and prolific artist, featuring the most comprehensive selection of his work.”(From publisher)

syndetics-lcHelmut Newton – World without men
“Taken between the mid 1960s and early 1980s, this selection of Newton fashion editorials—one of the first books he ever published—is accompanied by journal entry-style texts by Newton providing anecdotes and describing the circumstances of each shoot. On every page is evidence of Newton‘s groundbreaking vision that transformed fashion photography—an influence that can still be seen today in the pages of the greatest fashion magazines.” (From publisher)

syndetics-lcBrandt Nudes
“Few photographers have spanned the genres from photojournalism to true artistic endeavor as completely as Bill Brandt. Yet Brandt’s journalism was never strictly reportage; all his work reflected a clear artistic purpose. His qualities as an artist were never better expressed than in his series of nudes, photographed in the studio and on location over a period of thirty-five years. He published that work in two justly famous books: Perspective of Nudes (1961) and Bill Brandt Nudes (1980). Now the oeuvre has been brought together in a single volume in Brandt Nudes: A New Perspective, previously published only in a limited edition. This book reflects Brandt’s original selection and organization of the images. Each of the sections is introduced with a succinct and revealing essay on the work by Mark Haworth-Booth.”(From publisher)

syndetics-lc Adobe Master Class Photoshop
“This beautiful art showcase book from Adobe Press features 30 established and emerging Photoshop artists, their masterful work, and tutorials demonstrating their techniques for using Adobe Photoshop. Curated by renowned photographer and educator Ibarionex Perello, this book features an inspiring collection of innovative Photoshop artists and their amazing artwork. The images represent a mix of techniques and styles and are field-defining works that demonstrate technical excellence and awe-inspiring aesthetics. Readers will also appreciate the artists’ commentary about their inspiration and philosophy about their art. In addition to the art showcase, this book includes several tutorial projects that teach techniques for working in Photoshop. The how-to content, comprising 25 to 30 percent of the book, is based on general Photoshop features, so this book can be useful for users of recent and future versions of the Photoshop software.” (From amazon.com)

syndetics-lc Digital Infrared Photography
“This compact guide to infrared photography shows the beauty of infrared imagery, but also teaches how to capture these images with your digital camera. The book provides the basic theoretical background, information on cameras, filters and equipment, and lots of guidance on how to do infrared photography.” “This beautifully designed and illustrated book is the perfect companion for the aspiring photographer wanting to explore new photographic territories.” Book jacket.

HISTORY TOLD THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHY

This month is particularly biased on history, from personal histories of less known observers’ world views, to histories of some of the political royalties of last century. This review wraps up with two self-proclaimed time-saving guides that will keep you au-fait with the latest technologies available to today’s amateur photographer.

syndetics-lcVivian Maier out of the shadows 
After spending her life in the shadows of anonymity, her body of work reaching over one hundred thousand pictures, remaining in locked cabinets, garages and basements, Vivian was luckily discovered after her death and finally her photographs were brought to the light they deserve. As one of her former employers remembers, although she was marvellous with the children, “she wasn’t interested in being a nanny at all. She really wanted to be out on the street. She wanted to be taking pictures”. She worked to support her art. This book combines a powerful selection of her work, in a compact square format that reflects her choice of medium format cameras, mainly a Rolleiflex, with compelling stories from those who met her, acting as a posthumous memoir of this discreet human being.  
Mary Ellen Mark, herself revered for the humanity of her documentary photography says of Vivian Maier ”She was a humanist in the best tradition. She showed real life. And that’s so difficult to do.” A resounding accolade no less.

indexCADLIFPSFrom Prague to Auckland
“Published on the occasion of the exhibition From Prague to Auckland: the photography of Frank Hofmann (1916-1989) curated by Leonard Bell at the Gus Fisher Gallery, The University of Auckland, New Zealand, 26 August – 29 October 2011”–Colophon.(courtesy of Syndetics)

syndetics-lcHer Majesty
“The extraordinary public and private life of the world’s most famous monarch –
In honor of theQueen’s Diamond Jubilee—60 years on the throne—TASCHEN celebrates the extraordinary private and public life of Her Majesty. Born in 1926, married in 1947, crowned as Queen in 1953,for over six decades she has steadfastly and loyally carried out her duty on behalf of her country, never speaking out of turn or putting a foot wrong. The book tells her remarkable royal story through hundreds of stunning photographs, many previously unseen and sourced from multiple archives in the United Kingdom (including the Royal Collection), Continental Europe, and the United States.These images have it all: history, politics, glamour, fashion, culture, travel, and, of course, hats.
As the Queen, she has endlessly traveled the globe, been introduced to every leading icon of the 20th century, including the Beatles, Marilyn Monroe, and JFK, attended thousands of receptions and state functions; while concurrently being a mother to four children under the constant glare of public scrutiny.These photographs cover every aspect of her reign: the early years, coming of age during World War II, becoming a wife, Queen and mother, the Royal Tours, the palaces, the crowds, the weddings, the Royal Family, the Silver Jubilee in 1977, and the later years. God save her indeed!
Photographers included:Cecil Beaton, Studio Lisa, Dorothy Wilding, Karsh, Lord Snowdon, Patrick Lichfield, as well as more contemporary work from the likes ofWolfgang Tillmans, Rankin, Annie Leibovitz,and many others.” (Syndetics summary)

syndetics-lcTwilight of the Romanovs – A Photographic Odyssey Across Imperial Russia
“Twilight of the Romanovs opens a door into the world of pre-revolutionary Russia using original photographs taken during the last decades of Romanov rule. They include remarkable colour images created using an early three-colour-plate technique that brings the remote past to life. Our companions on this journey include the Scottish photographer William Carrick, Americans George Kennan and Murray Howe, the German-Russian Carl Bulla, Sergey Produkin-Gorsky, and the writers Leonid Andreyev and Anton Chekhov, together with many anonymous others.
These photographs are snapshots of a vanished world, yet they reveal a surprising continuity: despite the subsequent revolution, faces, buildings, and landscapes still resonate with those who see them a century and more later.” (From publisher)

syndetics-lc The Kennedys
“This publication is the definitive collection of Mark Shaw’s renowned photographs of the Kennedys. Photographys includ Kennedy’s favourite ever shot of himself, walking alone on the dunes at Hyannis Port, plus images on the campaign trail, relaxing at home with friends, entertaining at the White House, and the sombre days immediately following JFK’s assassination.” (Syndetics summary)
A personal favourite in this collection is the photograph of John and Jackie shot in November 1963, shortly before the fateful day. It struck a chord with Jackie herself whose letter to Shaw thanking him for the artful accompanies the print. “John looks like a Caravaggio — and, the one of John, reflected in the table, like some wonderful, strange, poetic Matisse.”

syndetics-lcThe Photoshop Elements 11
“This book (for Windows and Mac) breaks new ground by doing something for digital photographers that’s never been done before–it cuts through the bull and shows exactly “how to do it.” It’s not a bunch of theory; it doesn’t challenge readers to come up with their own settings or figure things out on their own. Instead, it tells readers flat-out which settings to use, when to use them, and why. This book gives the inside tips and tricks of the trade for organizing, correcting, editing, sharpening, retouching, and presenting photos like a pro. Readers will be absolutely amazed at how easy and effective these techniques are–once they know the secrets. “(From publisher)

syndetics-lcThe Quick Expert’s Guide to Mobile Phone Photography
“This series offers a shortcut to instant expertise! Quick Expert’s Guides are aimed at teens and ‘tweens who are keen to know more about a popular topic but who may be put off the idea of having to read wordy or technical guides. Each title includes features that break down technical/scientific/complex aspects of the subject, inspirational case studies, activities and a final project to test the reader’s new skills. Chapter round-ups also offer tips on key words and phrases as well as boosting self esteem and confidence, in order to walk the walk and talk the talk of a true expert.” (from Amazon.com)

Out of space odysseys, the world of make-believe and fairytales

From this month title, one could wonder whether this post is really about photography, or whether I am taking a cynical view of the role of photography. The truth is, photography as this month’s post will demonstrate, allows us to delve in the wonders of the universe around us, thanks to the technological feats of space travel. It also gives the most creative amongst us, the license to create a world of fantasy and extravagance, by arranging, composing, altering, juxtaposing, hiding and revealing, collaging and using any other clever means to create the desired image. The issue of photography and truth has long been debated. Even the “straightest” photograph is in some way a manipulation of reality. So once we are at peace with this fact, we can explore the world of possibilities at our disposal as some of this month’s books illustrate brilliantly.  

Planetfall 
“Thanks to the photographic output of a small squadron of interplanetary spacecraft, we have awakened to the beauty and splendor of the solar system. Since Michael Benson’s masterful book Beyond: Visions of the Interplanetary Probes, new, more powerful cameras in probes with greatly improved maneuverability have traversed the wheeling satellites of Jupiter; roamed the boulder-strewn red deserts of Mars; studied Saturn’s immaculate rings; and shown us our own ravishing Earth, a blue-white orb with a disturbingly thin atmosphere, as it plunges deeper into ecological crisis. Benson takes raw data from NASA and European Space Agency archives and processes it, creating large-format landscapes. He edits, composites, then frequently mosaics, and then finally optimizes these images, producing seamless digital C prints of landscapes beyond direct human experience. These new images are the subject of Benson’s Planetfall, a truly revelatory book that uses its large page size to reproduce the greatest achievements in contemporary planetary photography as never before”. (Adapted from publisher)

For a comprehensive review of the book, you may want to read Rebecca J. Rosen’s article in The Atlantic, complete with photographs and a link to Michael Benson’s current exhibition at the Hasted Kraeutler gallery in New York.

And on the subject, if you have missed the beautiful moonrise over Wellington on 29 January, here is an amazing video of the celestial display. 

Faking it – Manipulated Photography before Photoshop
“It is a long-held truism that ‘the camera does not lie’. Yet, as Mia Fineman argues in this illuminating volume, that statement contains its own share of untruth. While modern technological innovations, such as Adobe’s Photoshop software, have accustomed viewers to more obvious levels of image manipulation, the practice of “doctoring” photographs has in fact existed since the medium was invented. In “Faking It”, Fineman demonstrates that today’s digitally manipulated images are part of a continuum that begins with the earliest years of photography, encompassing methods as diverse as overpainting, multiple exposure, negative retouching, combination printing, and photomontage. Among the book’s revelations are previously unknown and never before published images that document the acts of manipulation behind two canonical works of modern photography: one blatantly fantastical (Yves Klein’s “Leap into the Void” of 1960); the other a purportedly unadulterated record of a real place in time (Paul Strand’s “City Hall Park” of 1915). Featuring 160 captivating pictures created between the 1840s and 1990s in the service of art, politics, news, entertainment, and commerce, “Faking It” provides an essential counterhistory of photography as an inspired blend of fabricated truths and artful falsehoods.”–Publisher’s website.

syndetics-lcJonathan Becker – 30 years at Vanity Fair
“Over three decades with Vanity Fair, Jonathan Becker has photographed some of the most fascinating characters from the rarefied worlds of art, literature, politics, pop culture, and society, capturing the personality and individuality of the subjects he celebrates. Assignments for the magazine have dispatched Becker far and wide—from the Amazonian jungle to Buckingham Palace”. (from amazon.com)

For a sneek peek of the photographs collected in this mammoth of a book, visit the Vanity Fair’s slideshow dedicated to this new publication.

syndetics-lcTim Walker, Story Teller
“Famed fashion photographer Walker shares a new collection assembled from the world’s most famous magazines (including Vogue, Vanity Fair, W, the New Yorker, a follow-up to 2008’s Pictures, which you can also find in our collection timed to coincide with a major exhibition at Somerset House in London, that will be held until end of January 2014 (for those who might be heading that way in the coming 12 months). Aided by an introduction by Robin Muir, foreword by Kate Bush, and Walker’s own afterword, these extravagantly choreographed, fantastical images never fail to deliver a jolt. They are usually disconcerting, and often have a downright wonderful sense of humor and play, as in a human windup doll. A holdout for shooting on film, Walker has an uncanny gift for stretching a moment and playing with time. This strength perhaps explains the cheeky dignity he lends his elderly subjects, whose portraits temper Walker’s usual archness with a welcome humanity. His images are stunningly vivid, sometimes over-bright in the manner of Avedon, whom Walker assisted. Many of his models wear facial expressions so flat and affect-free as to appear proxies for mannequins, suspended between worlds and struck hollow in the process. Like Avedon, Walker knows how to strip the human face of warmth to electrifying effect, and that tension between these macabre, morose faces and the comic elements in Walker’s visions gives the work its dynamism. This unresolved tension, always at the heart of Walker’s work, makes it perpetually thrilling. 170 color illus. (Adapted from Publishers weekly).

Syndetics book coverPhotographers / Michael Pritchard and Tony Nourmand.
“Photographers celebrates some of the men and women behind the camera. They range from press photographers and photojournalists from Life and Picture Post magazines to studio and fashion photographers such as Avedon and Bailey. Some of the greatest names from twentieth century photography are shown with their Leica, Nikon, Rolleiflex and Speed Graphic cameras taking pictures of film stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and John Wayne and pop stars such as the Beatles – as well as self-portraits and pictures of their contemporaries”–Cover.(Syndetics summary)

Reflections on Photography in 100 ideas and 100 years

What better time than the new year to reflect back on the journey that photography as a medium has achieved in the last century, from experimental, messy beginnings to the sleek and high tech styles of today’s digital age. A choice of very interesting and gorgeous books will take you on this amazing journey, looking at the early techniques, seminal photographers, myriad genres and styles from black and white documentary to glossy colour fashion photography. We will finish with a couple of titles that will help you improve your own photography from exposure to digital storage. May these inspire, illuminate and guide you at the start of a creative new year.

syndetics-lc100 ideas that changed photography
This compelling book chronicles the most influential ideas that have shaped photography from the invention of the daguerreotype in the early 19th century up to the digital revolution and beyond. Entertaining and intelligent, it provides a fascinating resource to dip into. Arranged in a broadly chronological order to show the development of photography, the ideas that comprise the book include innovative concepts, cultural and social incidents, technologies, and movements. Each idea is presented through lively text and arresting visuals, and explores when the idea first evolved and its subsequent impact on photography.
From amazon.com

syndetics-lcAmerican Photographs
More than any other artist, Walker Evans invented the images of an essential America that we have long accepted as fact. American Photographs, first published by the Museum of Modern Art in 1938, is the purest and most complete expression of his cool, unblinking vision. The eighty-seven photographs reproduced on its pages are as relevant and essential as ever, with Lincoln Kirstein’s essay as their eloquent foil. American Photographs has been a key touchtone for photographers and those who seek to understand the lyric potential of the medium, but it has often been out of print. This 75th anniversary edition, with sumptuous duotone plates complementing the elegant restraint of the original typography and design, makes Evans’s landmark book available again. For the first time, digital technologies aid in emulating the precise cropping and finely tuned balance of the 1938 reproductions, capturing as never before the look and feel of the first edition. (dust  jacket)

syndetics-lcMaster Photographers
An expansive publication for larger than life photographers and their arresting photographs. The images jump at the viewer who cannot stay unmoved, whether by the beauty, horror, significance or sheer scale of the print. This book assembles a wide range of styles, subject matters and photographic periods. A mammoth of a book that is sure to make a similarly grand impression.

syndetics-lcComing into Fashion
A fittingly plush publication looking back a the history of the world famous Condé Nast fashion magazines (Vogue, Vanity Fair), this book offers informative texts and interviews, dotted with 200 images from the publisher’s archives, some never seen before , as well as actual pages from magazines. It features over eighty photographers, revealing their talent and vision, sometimes from a very early point in their career. The big names seem to all appear along the pages, such as Edward Steichen, David Bailey or Paolo Roversi,  up to today’s exciting new comers such as Michael Baumgarten or Sølve Sundsbø. This book was published to coincide with the exhibition ‘Coming into fashion : a century of photography at Condé Nast’ curated by Nathalie Herschdoj and organized by the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography

syndetics-lcThousands of images, now what?
Digital photography has a way to induce “image creation overload”. The average amateur photographer can shoot between 5,000 and 50,000 images per year, a far cry from the days of analog photography when slides, negatives and prints could fit in shoe boxes under the bed. Another characteristic of the digital age is that our images are stored in computers and hard drives. We generally view them on screen, not in print. To add to this slippery situation, original images are often copied multiple times to suit different purposes such as uploading, posting, editing etc. No wonder most photography enthusiasts will find themselves tearing their hair out, trying to find a better way to manage an increasingly unruly and monstruous collection. This book is just what is needed to get on the way to a better, simpler, more efficient system to store, retrieve and use photographs, making sure that managing images doesn’t take over the creative side of photography.

syndetics-lcEnvisioning Family: a photographer’s guide to making meaningful portraits of the modern family
Another book that should be a favourite during this season of reunions with friends and family. Tamara Lackey, a professional lifestyle photographer, featured in numerous publications such as O Magazine, Men’s Journal and Parenting Magazine and showcased on TV shows such as The Martha Stewart Show, CNN’s Anderson and The Today Show shares her knowledge, techniques and wisdom to inspire and guide us in making successful family portraits indoors or outdoors thanks to a host of new ideas, contemporary images and clear texts.  For amateur and professional photographers alike.

syndetics-lcThe Weekend Photographer
Rewarding when done correctly, photography can also be frustrating when you don’t achieve the results you envisioned. Whether it is an issue of lighting, focus, white balance or photographer positioning, most mistakes can be easily identified, with a bit of help. The Weekend Photographer is a comprehensive guidebook to diagnose your problems and improve your overall technique, all within the time constraints of one weekend. Mainly focused on landscapes, whether urban or natural, this book will satisfy those who prefer to venture out by themselves and leave the family portraits to others.

Festive ideas for the accidental photographer

syndetics-lcNew Zealand – Craig Potton

As we enter the festive season, this book might be high on the list of most coveted gifts. A majestic display of what New Zealand’s nature has to offer and what we may want to discover or rediscover during the summer months. A beautiful coffee table contender by one of New Zealand’s most distinguished landscape photographers, famous for his moody, often dramatic images of the wild parts of New Zealand.

syndetics-lcRobert Doisneau – Paris Les Halles Market

Once coined the Belly of Paris by Emile Zola, for its crucial role in the social, economic and gastronomic fabric of the capital, the central market of Les Halles was painfully extracted from its historic central location in the 70’s and transferred to the outskirts of Paris, to become the largest wholesale food market in the world (Rungis). In its place, a large commercial centre was constructed, which became known for its controversial architecture and the doggy characters loitering in the pedestrian area.
In 1932, Robert Doisneau was a budding photographer in love with Paris and its people in their daily activities and Les Halles was a hive and treasure trove for such imagery.
This book is a celebration of the market, depicted with candour and passion over 40  years. Doisneau became a fierce supporter of the market and documented the demolition and subsequent transformation of “le trou des Halles” into its current state. On the eve of a new remodelling of this vibrant part of Paris, “Paris Les Halles Market” is a timely reminder of the history of the place, and a nostalgic window into a bygone world as described by the affectionate words of Doisneau himself. “Saint-Eustache, the “village church”, was itself a mixture of styles and aromas: incense-scented and Gothic on the inside, celery-scented on the outside. And all around, humanity massed in the glow of fairground lights, rich and poor alike, truck drivers and market porters, butchers and Dior customers, grocers and drunkards. Everyone was on familiar terms, and all around there floated a sense of great gaiety and good will, values that electronic computers cannot calculate.” (excerpt from book)

syndetics-lcLooking at Ansel Adams

As expected for such a photography legend, the library holds quite a few titles by and about this seminal artist.
This latest addition is a nice combination of text and photographs in equal parts, making “Looking at Ansel Adams” a very attractive illustrated concise biography. The book is divided into chapters following the chronology of his career and his major photographs such as ” Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, 1941″  or “Trailer-Camp Children, Richmond, California, 1944”.  A succession of personal accounts from Adams himself, together with contributions from his closest artist friends, family letters, postcards and mementos combine into a rich canvas complemented by details of the making of some of the iconic photographs we are so familiar with.  The book starts with a list of the major “characters” at play in the man’s life and concludes with a useful chronology and a glossary of photographic terms.

syndetics-lcMario Testino – Private View

The name is synomym with fame & glamour, fashion and celebrity. For the past 30 years, Mario Testino has been consumed by a passion for the world of fashion photography and has reached the pinnacle of his career, although he would argue that he is only started  “My favourite words are possibilities, opportunities and curiosity. I think if you are curious you create opportunities, and then if you open the doors, you create possibilities. People close doors all the time.”
A workaholic, Testino never tires of travelling the world to create ever more challenging, exciting and vibrant tableaux and protraits.
Mario Testino Private Views” was published to celebrate his inaugural exhibition in China. Beautifully and cleverly designed, this book is divided into three separate sections: LARGER THAN LIFE,  which shows portraits and snapshots of celebrities; IN MY OWN FASHION, which features the world of luxury brands and fashion magazines; and finally, PORTRAITS OF THE ROYAL FAMILY, which unveils some surprisingly informal and personal snapshots of the British monarchy.
An excellent introduction by Jennifer Allen gives us added insight into Testino’s world and craft.
Incidentally, the Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts is currently hosting two exhibitions of Testino’s work: In your Face is a retrospective of his work and influence in fashion photography whereas British Royal Portraits is exclusively dedicated to the British Royal family.
For further insight on this major photographer, read the accompanying Guardian article , watch the New York Times video of an interview with Testino and borrow the DVD of “The September Issue” from our DVD collection. A fascinating account of the world of fashion.

International Garden Photographer of the Year (Kew Gardens)International Garden Photographer of the Year

There are as many ways of looking at gardens as there are eyes in the world and this book gives us a wonderful collection of ways of seeing all aspects of gardens, from details of plants, flowers, fruits, vegetables and even animals that inhabit those man made spaces, to sweeping landscapes in all seasons and every continent. Here is a lyrical portrait of our relationship with nature and our attempt at shaping and enhancing it.
The International Garden Photographer of the Year competition was established in 2008. This book showcases some of the best images produced in the last 5 years.

syndetics-lcsyndetics-lc20th Century Photography Museum Ludwig Cologne & The George Eastman House Collection – A History of Photography

Here are 2 new companion titles from the prolific and democratic Taschen house. They are both intent on presenting a history of photography based on two specific and important collections: the Museum Ludwig Cologne on one hand which holds 860 works by hundreds of some of the most famous 20th century photographers and the George Eastman House based in Rochester, New York, the first museum dedicated to photography in the United States founded in 1949 by George Eastman of the Eastman Kodak Company. Compact yet full of essential facts and quality reproductions, these will certainly become reliable sources for anyone interested in the history of photography.

syndetics-lcShooting in Sh*tty Light, The top ten worst photography lighting situations and how to conquer them

Summer, family reunions and weddings are looming and cameras in cupboards, on shelves and in custom designed bags all over the country are getting agitated in anticipation. This is the time when many of us will be catching up with friends and relatives, taking those yearly portraits, trying their hands at new equipment, lenses etc.
This book is a mine of information for every challenging situation where the light is too strong, too low or just plain wrong. Divided into 10 chapters covering 10 typical lighting problems, the author goes through the issue in simple terms, explaining and highlighting any useful jargon and illustrating the process, from analysing  the situation, taking an awful initial photo (as it would come out if you let your camera decide for you), to adjusting and finding the best solution possible. Very useful!

syndetics-lcGIMP for Absolute Beginners

GIMP is a powerful open source graphics application with most of the features of its proprietary counterpart, Photoshop. This book provides a general introduction to GIMP for beginners, but it also contains topics that general GIMP users will find beneficial. You’ll learn how to navigate the GIMP‘s modular interface, how to use the layering system and tools, and how to both modify photos and create original web art. You’ll also learn how to extend the GIMP with tools like the GIMP Animation Package. What you’ll learn Learn how to navigate the Gimp Interface Edit photos and retouch images Getting familiar with tool workarounds Customize and configure the GIMP Interface Increase your design prowess Have fun with more complex graphics projects Who this book is for Hobbyists, occasional designers, enthusiastic photographers, graphical design amateurs, and beginning illustrators. (Library catalogue)