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TUSCANY NUDES Hardcover – 30 Sep 2009
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Let's start for the good things regarding this book. First, of course, each model in this book is breath taking, absolutely stunning. Combine this with amazing locations, that I bet were carefully chosen to make you fill at times as if you were watching at the Tuscany of the time of the Medici, or the views that inspired Puccini to write La Boheme and Madame Butterfly. To that, add a hardly arguable mastery of technique and style with the camera, in posing the model, in playing with lights and shadows. In few words, it is visually stimulating. I may go as far as the last reviewer and call it exquisite.
But if it is exquisite, why didn't I rate it with five stars? Well, because there is that "je ne sais quoi" missing. Hegre has been around for a while, and it seems his focus on stylistic perfection is making him forget that once you've seen an image before, technique and quality can make it more pleasant, but it does not surprise. Most images are definitely not new. It is the kind of photograph you've seen before, a slightly different setting, a different model, a tiny difference in angle, but it is there in the collective conscious of those of us who are fond of artistic nude photography. There area a few exceptions (like in the cover and its sequence, or those he took of Luba), but they are maybe 10% of the photos of the book.
There are also two observations I would like to make. First, to the editor, multi-page photographies work fine in centerfolds of magazines, but in thick, well binded books... well, not so much. And to Peter himself, Your taste in models is magnificent, but with the possible exception of Joyce, and maybe Jennipher, all others are very clearly Caucasian. Don't get me wrong, I think Caucasian women are beautiful, I am married to one. But with the access a photographer like Peter oughta have of models, I am sure he could easily find a more multiracial set of subjects for his books.
The book makes a fine piece for a coffee table at an appropriate place and situation. But it could have been much better.
And that's pretty much the premise of this photo exposition by noted naked girl photographer Petter Hegre - as he places some lovely specimens of the fairer sex into some gorgeous Tuscan locales and snaps away - presenting the resultant images for our viewing pleasure. The quality of this book is very nice - flawless print job in large format - with artful golden Tuscan toned monochromatic images throughout. Beautiful settings and beautiful women - a winning formula - yet somehow the end result seemed a little mundane and contrived and my ultimate reaction to the package tended to the "ho-hum" response. Perhaps if there had been more actual Italian women included amongst his featured stable of Euro models, or set-ups a little less 'stock'... nuthin' really 'wrong' with it but it just didn't provide the 'promised''Botticelli-ian' experience I was hoping it would. Still, one could do worse than flipping thru page after page of artful nudes posed amidst Renaissance villas, and grape and olive orchards. Worth a look but maybe at a 'discounted' rate.