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Remembering Ansel Adams on His Birthday

“Photography, as a powerful medium of expression and communications, offers an infinite variety of perception, interpretation and execution. “

—Ansel Adams

Ansel Easton Adams, born February 20, 1902, was one of the greatest photographers of the 20th Century. Famous for his black and white landscape photographs of the American West, reproductions can be seen world-wide.  Today, many photographers travel to the same locations where he photographed to capture their own rendition of the beautiful landscapes. Adams developed the Zone System along with Fred Archer, a necessary technique when shooting film that in today’s digital world might not be known. Adams and Willard Van Dyke  founded Group f/64, known for their unique style of of shooting at a great depth of field for very sharp exposures.  His time spent in New Mexico was when he began to publish books on photography and spent time with other artists in the region, Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O Keeffe, and Paul Strand. In 1952 Aperture magazine was founded by Adams and other fine art photographers including Dorothea Lange. The mission of the publication was to view photographs as a fine art.  Today it is an international quarterly publication featuring both established and emerging photographers as well as artists experimenting with photo-related media.

In addition to his photographic accomplishments, he was a self taught pianist, writer, educator, and environmentalist. His involvement in the Sierra Club started early on, where his first works were published in the Sierra Club Bulletin. In 1934 he joined the Board of Directors of the Sierra Club and maintained this role for 37 years. In 1968 he was awarded the Conservation Service Award, the most prestigious honor of the Sierra Club.  Other honors he received include the Hasselblad Award (1981), honorary Artium Doctor degree from Harvard University, honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from Yale University, and was inducted into the California Hall of Fame.

Watch An enlightening and absorbing portrait of Ansel Adams in action. Intimate and warm hearted, the video captures Adams’ spirit and artistry as he talks about his life and demonstrates the techniques which have made his work legendary.

© The Ansel Adams Gallery

 

 

5 comments

  1. Happy birthday ,Ansel,and in your honor I will shoot some film today!
    Happy “Zone System” shooting everyone!
    Wayne S.

  2. Thank you for posting this blog. It was magical to watch Ansel and to hear him talk about the way he felt about photography.

  3. What an awesome post and way to remember one of the greats!

  4. YOU ARE GREAT ,
    THANK YOU .

  5. Thank you, sir!
    Your books disappeared in a move, but I have the memories.
    I have realized you created an image I greatly enjoy. in the year of my birth, 1942. I will buy a print!
    Thanks

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