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Birds and Light: The Art of Lars Jonsson Hardcover – 29 Nov 2002


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Christopher Helm Publishers Ltd (29 Nov 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0713664053
  • ISBN-13: 978-0713664058
  • Product Dimensions: 28 x 2.8 x 30 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 264,907 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

The book is lushly and generously illustrated throughout, and the full-page sketchbook studies are particularly breathtaking. Lyrical combinations of soft, fluid pencil strokes tinted with vibrant and precise splashes of color glide and flutter across the pages. While art historians may debate the importance of Jonsson's paintings, they are undeniably beautiful.

About the Author

Lars Jonsson is widely regarded as the best bird artist in the world. His exceptionally accurate and expressive style has been achieved through a combination of talent and countless hours sketching in the field. He is also a much-respected field ornithologist. His books include Birds of Europe and Bird Island both published by Christopher Helm.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 21 Jan 2003
Format: Hardcover
Fans of Lars Jonsson's art will not be disappointed by this sumptuous translation of the Swedish original. The production values of the paintings are simply stunning.
It's not all perfect, though. The text suffers from some very quirky and all-too-literal translation from the original, which makes it harder work than it should be. That, combined with the high number of proofing errors, are bad enough to reduce my rating by one star. Jonsson hasn't been very well served by his publisher on this occasion.
The text of the book is a curious mixture of the autobiographical, interviews with the author and the instructive. Any potential artist wishing to emulate Jonsson's style will find some useful pointers, but will equally be depressed at seeing the man's genius from an early age. Is it possible to learn to be this good at painting without having a healthy leg-up from the gene pool?
The text reminds me of The Two Worlds of Andy Wyeth, in that it tried to get into the mind of the artist rather more than many wildlife art books do. With a more sympathetic translation, it could have achieved this aim. But at least it takes art and nature equally seriously rather than complaining too much about the status accorded to natural history subjects by the art world.
Few people, however, will buy this book for the text. Lars Jonsson's reputation is built on his uncanny ability to paint gloriously detailed birds as they really are, without suffering any of the photographic realism that blights so many other technically proficient artists (especially Americans). His birds leap perfectly lit from the page, evoking the atmosphere of his northern lands. There are no hard edges, no unnecessary details and no compromises about the differences between individual birds in the same species.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Dennistoun on 21 Jan 2013
Format: Hardcover
I had this book on my Wish List and then my husband kindly gave it to me for Christmas. It is a gem. The text is informative without being overwhelming and is easily accessible for those who love beautiful wildlife paintings, but are not necessarily experienced birders.
As Lars Jonsson is one of my favorite artists, I could not have received a better present and would certainly recommend it.
Birds and Light: The Art of Lars Jonsson
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Simon Wood on 12 Dec 2010
Format: Hardcover
While I agree with the previous reviewer about the editorial glitches in the text, this is a book you will buy for the pictures - and they (with the exception of a slightly dodgy self portrait and a couple of other non avian subjects) are fantastic, as is their reproduction. Getting inside the artist's head adds to the book, and the sequence on the development of one canvas is fascinating, but this book is worth 5 (or even 6!) stars for the Birds and the Light alone.

Oh - and I'd be very happy to be able to draw as well now as Jonsson could when he was seven!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Outstanding 24 Jan 2003
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is outstanding. Both the sketches and the complete paintings are literally awesome. Many paintings are so apparently "simple" that you are temped to think that they are "easy", but they are not. Many are so delicate to be closer to poetry than to painting. Beautiful. I do hope more of Jonsson's art will be published in the USA.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Magnificent book, text and illustrations 18 Mar 2003
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book is truly beautiful and is an absolute steal at this price. With the extensive notes and background information, I believe that it will appeal more to the birder or person interested in bird art than to the casual coffee-table book collector.
This is a beautiful book 24 Nov 2013
By L. Ward - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautiful paintings! This is a perfect book for the coffee table when you have company come visit in your home.
Birds and Light: The Art of Lars Jonsson 8 July 2013
By KEVIN SU - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Birds and Light: The Art of Lars Jonsson, it's great artist in the world, those painting are treasure I never seen it before, I love it.
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