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Photography Ansel Adams & David Hockney Ansel Adams • Started off as a musician; photography was just a hobby at first. • In 1932 Adams jointed a group of West Coast photographers, known as f-64, who formed in reaction to Pictorialism. Pictorialism • It was seen as artistic photography so current styles of art were reflected . • Impressionism was in vogue so many of these photographs resemble paintings in this style. • The photos were often shot in soft focus. Strait Photography • Adams and the group made sharp focus photographs, usually from nature, with very small aperture openings (f-64). • The group was devoted to making strait photography acceptable as an art form. The Field Camera • To achieve the results he wanted Adams used a field camera. • This type of camera uses a very large negative. • A larger negative allows more detail to be recorded. The Zone System • Adams is credited with establishing the Zone System: Procedure for predicting & controlling the translation of subject tones into print values. Each zone represents a value (i.e. dark grey,) and the difference between each zone is one f- stop. Rose & Driftwood 1932 • This is a close-up "macro" photograph. • The piece of wave-worn driftwood creates a rhythmic setting for to the soft shapes of the rose petals. • Adams was yet to develop the zone system so he "bracketed.“ • The photograph is taken six times; each is a slightly different exposure in order to get at least one of them just right. Yosemite Falls 1940 • photo displays a combination of visual sensitivity and technical excellence • the print contains dramatic effects of light, rich texture, & brilliant tonality. • He achieves sharpness & brilliance through careful selection of composition, light conditions, & focus. • The subject comes from Yosemite National Park. • The balanced composition is unified through the repetition of interlocking V-shapes. • There is a staggering amount of detail in the texture of the rocks as well as the foliage. • The shortened ground plain exaggerates the height of the sublime cliffs. Mt. Williamson, Manzanar, California, 1943 • Manzanar Relocation Center was the site where ten thousand Japanese Americans were detained after Pearl Harbour. • Adams came to photograph images that express the perseverance of the inhabitants. • He wanted a record of their ability to overcome the hardship of the harsh/beautiful surroundings. • Strove to improve moral during time of crisis by showing something timeless and life enhancing. • He believed the Japanese-Americans, a nature-loving people, must have been inspired and strengthened by the setting. • Shows subject in a divine light (God’s rays) and backlit clouds. • Shows timeless qualities of nature. • The triangular/pyramid shapes of mountains are mirrored by those of three boulders in the foreground • The front boulder is focal point and the viewer’s eye is led to mountains by the perspective of boulders. David Hockney • Considered single viewpoint photos too instant, still, and momentary. • He believed that traditional fixed perspective photo took away the viewers body. • He decided to shoot a series of details (multiple views of a subject), and then reassemble/overlap the photos . Joiners • a collage of photo's that show multiple points of view of a subject. These photographic images incorporate the 4th dimension into the photo process, resulting in a fuller document of the visual experience. The 4th Dimension • The 4th dimension involves movement through time & space. • Picasso first incorporated this aspect of perception in Cubism. Walking Through the Zen Garden at Ryoanji 1983 • As a viewer one must journey through dozens of visual frames that result in a single reconstituted image. • Often parts of the subject will be shown more than once. “What really excited me was when I pieced together the Zen Garden in Kyoto. I began to realize that one of the areas I was really examining was perspective, that this was what you could alter in photography… To do it in photography was, in a sense, quite an achievement because photography is the picture-making process totally dominated by perspective.” • The subject is a Zen Buddhist garden. • Hockney photographs it as he walks along the edge. • As he does he photographs his eccentric mix-matched socks. • The recombined individual photos contain a reversal in perspective. • The resulting image shows the feeling of looking while moving – the visual experience in motion. “People complain that when they see a portrait by Picasso where… somebody has three eyes, they say: But people don’t have three eyes! It’s much simpler than that. It’s not that the person had three eyes; it’s that one of the eyes was seen twice.” Hockney Pearblossom Hwy. 1986 • This represents the fullest development of the medium. • It contains a seeming single point perspective as well as countless perspectives. • The viewer is able to focus in on all of the details that would be of visual interest at the site. • Roadside debris, cacti, road signs, etc. are all photographed separately. • To make the work the artist moved closer then further, crouched, and climbed a step ladder. • He spent hours at the sight so the passage of time is documented. • The work becomes a fully synthesized experience of reality. • Hockney wanted to convey the idea in modern physics that the viewer affects what he is observing, that our ideas about reality must take our own consciousness into account.
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