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Eliot Porter: In the Realm of Nature Hardcover – 30 Aug 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Getty Publications; 1 edition (30 Aug. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1606061194
  • ISBN-13: 978-1606061190
  • Product Dimensions: 24.1 x 2.3 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 742,601 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"For the last several decades landscape photographers have concentrated on showing man's depredations of nature, but their pictures only take on meaning when set against images of untrammeled beauty by artists such as Eliot Porter."--"Wall Street Journal"

"Some of Eliot Porter's loveliest photographs of birds and fragments of the natural landscape make up this handsome sampling of his work. . . . His subjects are so subtle as to be almost invisible to a casual observer. But once Porter shows them to us, we cannot stop looking."--"ARTnews"

"Gorgeous."--"Christianity Today"

"Beautiful. . . . A concise course in what may be done with a camera in the hands of a master."--"Choice"

"An absolutely exquisite collection."--"Shelf Awareness"

"Eliot Porter . . . was one of the pioneers in the use of color photography, and the pioneer in portraying birds and other elements of the natural scene in color."--"Pasatiempo"

"The photo reproductions are, in a word, superb. [...] If you own only one Eliot Porter book, this is the one to have."--" Online Photographer"

"[Porter's] images are rich and saturated with movement and detail, qualities that this book by Getty curator Martineau honors by simply getting out of the way.... A brief introduction, white space, short captions, and an emphasis on quality reproduction let the artist's work stand for itself."
"Publishers Weekly""

For the last several decades landscape photographers have concentrated on showing man s depredations of nature, but their pictures only take on meaning when set against images of untrammeled beauty by artists such as Eliot Porter. "Wall Street Journal""

Some of Eliot Porter s loveliest photographs of birds and fragments of the natural landscape make up this handsome sampling of his work. . . . His subjects are so subtle as to be almost invisible to a casual observer. But once Porter shows them to us, we cannot stop looking. "ARTnews""

Gorgeous. "Christianity Today""

Beautiful. . . . A concise course in what may be done with a camera in the hands of a master. "Choice""

An absolutely exquisite collection. "Shelf Awareness""

Eliot Porter . . . was one of the pioneers in the use of color photography, and the pioneer in portraying birds and other elements of the natural scene in color. "Pasatiempo""

The photo reproductions are, in a word, superb. [ ] If you own only one Eliot Porter book, this is the one to have. " Online Photographer""

About the Author

Paul Martineau is an associate curator in the Department of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum and author of the best selling Herb Ritts: L.A. Style.


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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a good introduction to Porters work for those seeking basic information. A good essay with all the necessary information and with plates well printed in good colour. Porter's intimate landscapes will not satisfy those who seek the larger view but are most rewarding. Less impressive are his bird pictures which now seem dated and overrated.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have liked Eliot Porters work for a long time and found this book very enjoyable with some information I didn't know before. Recommended.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars 17 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Father of Nature Photography in Color 29 Dec. 2012
By Conrad J. Obregon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Although Ansel Adams, Minor White and Edward Weston stand large in the pantheon of great twentieth-century fine-art photographers, nature photographers might certainly reserve the prime spot for Eliot Porter. Before Art Wolfe and Frans Lanting there was Porter, photographing the natural world in color.

As a book, "In the Realm of Nature" seems a bit curious. It would appear to be a catalog of a show that occurred at the Getty Museum, except that it follows the show by more than six years. The book is a broad cross section of the artist's work, starting with some of the early black and white pictures he took as a young man and proceeding to the wonderful landscapes and bird pictures taken with the earliest color materials available. It seems a retrospective of his work, and so, while his fans will find nothing new here, it does gather his greatest work under one cover. Here are the pictures he took of the western wilderness, first used by the Sierra Club in its fight against the Glen Canyon Dam, and then more widely published as a celebration of the natural world.

Modern photographers will see how technology affects the image aesthetic. In his bird images, because of the available film's low ISO, Porter was required to use huge banks of flash bulbs to capture flight images. This resulted in a huge fall off in light in the backgrounds to almost complete black. Today's photographers can capture similar images without using any flash, resulting in brighter, more realistic backgrounds. Yet long before Arthur Morris, there was Elliot Porter.

His landscapes also appeal to a slightly different aesthetic then the other art photographers of his day, and indeed, today. For artists like White and Weston, the image was all about form, whereas for the most part, Porter is usually concerned that the form explicate the content. (This is not to say that Porter could not occasionally become absorbed with form; the photographs of lichens growing on rocks certainly are derived from the aesthetics of the abstract expressionists.)

His works also differ from modern nature photography in that today's photography often works to direct our attention to the artist's vision. Porter, using deep focus, frequently presented us with complex patterns of trees and branches, leaving it to the observer to work out what the picture is about.

The essay accompanying the images is mostly biographical, with little concern for criticism, although Martineau is at pains to distinguish Porter's color usage from that of photographers William Eggleston and Stephen Shore who seemed to be concerned with color as a form without much regard for content.

The printing of the images appears to be good, although with the passage of time the colors in the original photographs have probably changed. I compared an image in the book to an actual Porter image, and I noticed a slight variation in luminosity. (On a few occasions, I questioned the accuracy of the white balance in some images, but that may have been due as much to Porter's artistic decisions as to my 21st century expectations.) I was not concerned about this since the images in the book are still quite wonderful.

Unless one already has a large collection of Porter books, this one should certainly be in the library of anyone who is concerned with the development of nature photography.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Product! 21 Feb. 2013
By Rocky - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For people who love photography and its history, this book is a must. The presentation is skilled. It starts with Porter's black and white pictures and moves on to his color photography. Although I was familiar with many of these photographs, I had never seen them presented as part of the history of Porter's work and development. Nor had I realized that many of these familiar photographs were taken by Porter. No matter what the subject or type of film, Porter had a remarkable "eye". It is a pleasure to see what he did with it. I highly recommend this book.
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing! 2 Mar. 2013
By squiggledoodle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I was so excited about a new Eliot Porter book; its been years since a new book of his has been published. And then I was so disappointed when I saw it - the print quality it horrible! It is considerably inferior to the original Eliot Porter books published by the Sierra Club over 40 years ago. Porter, the photographer more than any other who got color photographs respected as art, deserves so much better than this disrespectful treatment. The technology to do gorgeous reproductions is available; these
reproductions look nothing like the originals, and they look terrible. Avoid this book!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have photography book for the thoughtful, about 10% of the viewing public. 22 Nov. 2013
By Tex Andrews - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would say a must for every landscape photographer, but it would go over most of their heads. Don't look for screaming, over-saturated, spectacular, drama-drama-drama, photos here. And check out his brother's work, Fairfield Porter. Almost identical sensitivity, but a painter.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In the Realm of Nature. 18 April 2013
By David Tatnall - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Eliot Porter was one of the world's greatest nature photographers working in colour. Paul Martineau in his book has chosen 91 of Porter's photographs from the Greenberg & Steinhauser collections and the archive of Amon Carter Museum of American Art. Porter pioneered in the field of colour print making using Kodak's dye transfer process. The photographs in the book are reproduced beautifully. Unlike over coloured contemporary digital photography, Porter's dye transfer photographs have a subtle and soft colour. The book also has some examples of Porter's earlier black & white photographs.

The book has an introduction by Michael Brune ED of the Sierra Club and an essay by Paul Martineau.

Recommended for anyone interested in colour photography and the use of photography for conservation.
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