A stimulating book where text and images are equally important,
This review is from: Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb on Street Photography and the Poetic Image (The Photography Workshop Series) (Paperback)
I find it strange that some reviewers seem surprised, disappointed and/or critical that this is not a 'workshop' book and has no 'practical' impact. The Webbs were never going to produce the kind of book such reviewers seem to crave - as Alex says 'It's not for me to tell viewers what to find in my photographs; it's for them to discover'. This goes for the book as a whole - you'll discover a lot here - if you reflect on it - but it's more about the essence of photography than the nuts and bolts - Larry Fink's companion volume is exactly the same in this respect.
I really like the 'spareness' of this book - this is the essence of a photographic approach in text and images - there's no long and complicated theorising - just the core ideas, clear and to the point - in a book that has high production values.
Alex Webb has done something very difficult in the modern photographic environment - created a unique personal style - and he explains and illustrates the evolution of his approach and the core of his thought-processes extremely well - such as the 'crowded frame'. There's a fundamental honesty here - street photography is 99.9 percent failure. Webb's images are so different and challenging that they take some looking at - always a good thing in itself. Bland they are not; they stand out from the crowd. Some of his images are just brilliant and always stimulating and provoking. The juxtaposition of text and images with Rebecca Norris Webb works well as a device - although personally I would have probably preferred a full volume of Alex Webb.
I think there's some fundamental 'practical' advice embodied here -but you need to discover it for yourself.