The Masters of Nature Photography: Wildlife Photographer of the Year Hardcover – 1 Aug 2013
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Hearing the call of the wild and capturing it on camera are two very different things, as the 10 photographers featured in the new book The Masters of Nature Photography can attest. They sometimes spent months tracking their subjects or stood waist-deep in lakes for hours. Still, nature photography is an underappreciated art, says the book's editor, Rosamund Kidman Cox. Because wildlife photography has historically been used mainly to record animals rather than to create art, the job was left to scientists who weren't trying to take something beautiful, says Ms. Cox. But recent improvements in photography, such as larger lenses and digital features, have allowed photographers to get more up-close and artistic.--Alexandra Wolfe"Wall Street Journal.com" (09/27/2013)
About the Author
Each artist featured in the book has been a winner in the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition - an international showcase for the very best photography featuring natural subjects. One hundred of the most innovative and imaginative images are chosen annually by a panel of expert judges. These images form an exhibition at the Natural History Museum, London, that tours worldwide throughout the year. The competition is owned by two UK institutions that pride themselves on revealing and championing the diversity of life on Earth: the Natural History Museum and BBC Worldwide.
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Top Customer Reviews
It's unusual, but this is one book where the photographs are outshone by the words. You'll have seen many of the wonderful images before, but this isn't the point of the book. The point of the book is to explain, to give insight into the encounter, or the challenge, or - and I felt this particularly in a 21st century, high capability culture - to get a sense of how difficult things were in the past, even just 10 years ago with low ISO film and constrained decision making ability. It is the text that should warrant your investment in this book, rather than the photographs - particularly you, the photographer, but also you, the awe-struck citizen who admires the dream-makers.
Keen wildlife photographers will known Rosamund Kidman Cox well, who provides the introduction (and I assume some oversight!) to the book - Ros was editor of BBC Wildlife magazine for 23 years and has been involved in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competitions and particularly the annual compendiums resulting from the competition, as well as a very welcome fixture at the annual WildPhotos conference held at the Royal Geographical Society in London. A comment she makes in the introduction appeals to me: "Though the tools they work with are far better than in the days of film, tools are just tools. Knowledge and experience, and vision and passion, are still the most crucial elements."
The book spans 30 years of wildlife photography and picks out only 10 photographers - each choose 10 of their favourite images.Read more ›
Each of the 10 photographers chosen for this book has won awards in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and each has choses 10 photographs. Under these circumstances, it's hardly surprising that the pictures are stunning.
This does not mean that I like - or expect other people to like - all of the images in the book. The styles of image produced by the photographers are very different. The simple Japanese influenced pictures of animals taken in the snow by Vincent Munier are almost stripped of colour, but are absolutely superb. Some of the images by Nick Nichols seem (but probably are not) staged, with a strange intensity of light which seems (as far as I am concerned) to place a barrier between the viewer and the subject. However, other images by this photographer are stunning. Its this variety of images that is the strong point of the book. The message seems to be "there is no one way to take pictures" - as long as you can find your own photographic voice, there are many ways to create stunning images.
A number of themes seem to run through the commentary that is provided for each portfolio - firstly the idea of "pre-visualisation" is important - in other words having an idea of what you want to portray in the image before you press the shutter button, and secondly, it is surprising how many images do not fill the page with the subject. In some cases the "if you pictures are not good enough, you are not close enough" maxim may hold true, but these images show this is not always the case. Animals are a part of the environment, and they do not always need to be isolated from it. This is good news for photographers who cannot afford very long lenses!
This is a splendid book that comes very highly recommended.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Outstanding photographs! A selection of the best pictures. Very recommendable!Published 18 months ago by F.M. Kooij
Fabulous book. I am a professional travel photographer and really enjoyed photos and text. ExcellentPublished 22 months ago by Peter Barritt
The book was delivered in a large box with another item, therefore I requested an exchange but the book is now out of stock - very disappointed as the book itself is beautiful.Published on 22 Dec. 2013 by N J Dowdle