Ansel Adams Books - Digital Photography Books - Books by and About Photographers

Here are the classic Ansel Adams books. (This is the first page for Ansel, more to follow.)
This is the paperback I started with. For many years, it was the only "formal" photographic training I had. It is an excellent starting point for film development, choosing equipment (film), and an introduction to the Zone System. Then I moved on to the trilogy by Adams listed below. Honestly though - for all the basics - especially what you need to get started developing film and how to figure out what a "correct" exposure is for what you want to express - I do recommend this book.

The Camera : The First Book in the Ansel Adams Triad

The Camera covers 35 mm, medium format, and large-format view cameras and offers detailed advice on camera components such as lenses, shutters, and light meters. Adams' concepts of "visualization" and "image management" are the philosophical cornerstones of the book. Extensively illustrated with photographs by Adams as well as instructive line drawings, this classic manual belongs on every serious photographer's bookshelf.

The Negative. Second Book in the Adams Trilogy

The idea of compressing or expanding the tonal range, and how to make an expressive exposure - these ideas are surprisingly current even in the digital capture age. The techniques for doing this with film are - I believe relevant - to what is done later in Photoshop. And all these years later, whether shooting film or digital - the Zone System ideas stick with me and give me a framework for exposures. At the very least I would recommend the first book by Shaefer as a way of understanding black and white exposure.

The Print. Third Book in the Ansel Adams Trilogy

The Print, now available in paperback like the other volumes in the series, belongs on every photographer's shelf. It covers the entire printmaking process, from designing and furnishing a darkroom and experimenting with your first print, to mastering advanced techniques such as developer modifications, toning, and bleaching, and burning and dodging.

The Making of 40 Photographs

I've started to do something based on his idea, but so far I've only done the making of One Photograph. The thing about Adams that's amazing is not only his photographs, but the amount of writing and instruction he did. I don't know how he managed it.

His autobiography. Well-written and honest and I go back to it when I'm looking for some quotes for my photo blog. My favorite story was how when Ansel came to New York for an exhibit - he found the city so annoying that he headed back to Yosemite ahead of schedule.

My Recommendations:

Ansel Adams Books - Digital Photography Books - Books by and About Photographers


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