- Also check our best rated Photography Book reviews
In Focus: National Geographic Greatest Portraits (National Geographic Collectors) Hardcover – 21 Sep 2010
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
About the Author
DAN WESTERGREN took up photography after being taught how to develop film by an indulgent science teacher in the eighth grade. That early experience instilled in him a reverence for the classic, timeless feel of a wonderful photograph, a reverence that he continues to feel even with his job as Director of Photography for National Geographic Travel. In addition to photo editing for National Geographic Traveler magazine and Natgeo.com/travel he has photographed a variety of stories, including expeditions up Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa and Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn in the European Alps. Westergren also went on and photographed an expedition to ski the last degree to the North Pole. Over the years, he's shot some of the world's most intriguing people, places and experiences.
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
The book is mainly arranged by decade from the 1920s until the millennium as the book was first published in 2004, although there is no natural progression within any one chapter. A couple of general introductory chapters precede the main section. Most of the photographs are in colour and it is improbable that any would have been taken using digital cameras, but is is just about possible.
Some may question the manner in which the term 'portraits' has been interpreted. Some of the images are clearly posed and formal, especially some of the older ones, but many are informal or casual and include street and beach scenes and others where one or more persons predominate in the shot. Some may more correctly be classified as landscapes with people and it is those people who are the reason for this book's existence. Some of the images are of historical interest or importance in that they show lifestyles and customs that no longer exist, for example the stretched necks of certain African tribes and Australian Aboriginal wedding customs. Consequently, several are unique and unrepeatable.
None of the photographers whose images appear in the book are of necessity famous and many would have been staffers or freelancers working for the magazine. In the case of the staffers, it is likely that they would be requested to go to a location in order to illustrate a future article. With the freelancers, it was more likely that they planned to go to a location and then approached the magazine to finance and underwrite their trip and to publish an article or several during the trip or upon their return. In some instances, NatGeo would provide some or all of the equipment needed for their assignments.
Although none of the images needs be a masterpiece in its own right, all are or were truly representative of the styles, methods and techniques of their day. Although, with modern technologies, it is practically impossible to exactly reproduce the styles employed, there is something here to be learned. Modern digital cameras are extremely capable and far more complex than the early model Leicas or Rolleiflexes with their fixed lenses that may well have been used for some of the older images, and interchangeable lenses courtesy of later Leica and Contax models would have likely been used within a few years. Their lenses would have allowed a little more latitude in working distance and with different light levels; Contax famously had a lens with an aperture of f0.95 which would sometimes have been needed as the film used before WW2 was of low sensitivity. By the 1960s, interchangeable-lens camera would have been the most often used and film technology, especially that of Kodachrome and some of its competitors, was at its zenith.
Although the book is of necessity a retrospective republication of images that were first published in its magazines, that in no way detracts from their value or, in some instances, historical importance. At Amazon's current price, this would make an excellent addition to any photographer's book collection, or as a gift for anyone interested in photography or people.
The repro isn't great, but you'll spend hours looking at them and you'll be inspired to travel.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews
It pulls me back in time, into interesting places. Also, it helps me to meet different cultures. Thank you.
Look for similar items by category