Ansel Adams - The Eloquent Eye - documentary movie presented in class in the spring semester
The Ansel Adams Gallery - order a print for yourself
Ansel is most know for his phenomenal Black and White Imagery...you will see some of his work as VERY large black and white prints...with white boards and black frames all around town.
Ansel not only had a dramatic impact on the Art of Photography, he also helped promote the awareness about and the importance of the environment while helping to expand our national parks system bringing awareness to such parks as Yosemite and Yellowstone. He was (and still is after his death) a crucial voice in the preserving of America.
This first, full size image, by Ansel, is of Vernal Falls. Look a little further down on the page to see my version in 1990, then in 2009.
This was no small camera...and he would hike into the mountains with this camera. Each picture he took was taken on a plate of glass, similar to the one I showed you back in October.
Ansel on Display - It is not uncommon to find his large prints on display all around town. This is at the Cafe in the ST. Es. Wellness Center. There used to be three hanging along the wall. One fell...and they have all been moved now. The third images was taken at the Parts Dept of Mike Smith Automotive...an unusual find, IMO. You can see how BIG the prints are...which is the typical Ansel Adams type of display. The last in the series is of then West Brook Principal, Bill Daniels, 2008-12. I was impressed to see he had an Ansel image above his desk.
Drew Loker's images from Yosemite (below):
The images below on the left are from scans of early film work done from a trip to Yosemite in the early '90s. The images are just ok, but in 1990, when I was still at Lamar and shooting for the Lamar University Press, these photos represented my first real photos that weren't for a newspaper and were some of my favorites for many, many years developing much of my interest in Landscape Photography even today. Actually, I could hardly wait to return...and finally, after almost 20 years, I was able to plan a return trip for an opportunity to visit on of the most beautiful places I have ever visited...but this time with a digital SLR.
In July 2009, everything fell together at the last minute for a return trip to Yosemite! In the pictures below, I have tried to match up my first trip on the left (1990...when I was 22) and my 2nd trip (2009...when I was 41). I just hope it isn't another 20 years before I can return. What a AWESOME place!
- These first two are from the water fall called Vernal Falls. See Ansel's shot above that is similar (and better)...but when I went back in 2009, I got the rainbow. :) http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/waterfalls.htm The image on the right (in 2009) is a little further up the trail. This time, I knew to expect drenching water mist...so I had special water proof bags to protect my camera while being able to continue to shoot. A trip like this takes a lot of planning...like, when to hike up a trail as far as morning or afternoon....which I didn't do enough of. But, on this hike it seemed we were on the right trail at the right time with perfect lighting conditions...that were not present on the way back down the trail.
These next two are Tuolumne Meadows, one of the high sierra access areas UP in the mountains...the valleys of the mountains...the pictures just don't do it justice. The area is at about 11k ft...and was created by Glacier movement.
The original image on the left has remained one of my favorites for 20 years. Something about this particular scene was very special to me. I tried to find this same spot to photograph it digitally but could not find this same spot. The photo on the right was taken by my wife.
One of my earliest wildlife photos...2009 didn't disappoint with several new birds, insects, etc.
To get such a shot, you have to have pretty still water. This continues to be on one of my best reflection shots. But I did get the pretty neat Black & White Reflection. This was at Dog Lake...a little bit of a hike to get to...especially with 50 lbs of camera gear...but well worth it. The image was captured initially in color...and I have plenty of shots of the area that are just as nice, in color, but this was very fitting as a B&W.
Yosemite has had numerous fires...this show the changes that occur AFTER the fire. On the 2009 trip, we did not see the fire damage like before (upper left with the back trees ascending out of the flowers)...although this time there was a tremendous amount of smoke in the are from surrounding areas. This made for some very interesting sunsets. The sunset images are from a place call "Firewatch Peak" with a 360 degree view of the Yosemite area where you could see how dramatic the impact of the fires had on the entire area.
This was in the middle of the summer. I showed up to Yosemite in shorts...and it snowed on us our first day in the mountains. I wasn't able to get the same shot as the left...but I got a lot of other wonderful vistas. Every day when the sun was about to set was a new challenge to find out just where we would be to capture the perfect lighting.
This image was 2009...I didn't take a shot like this in the 1990 trip.
- For more of my favorite Yosemite images, visit http://picasaweb.google.com/drewloker/20090723Yosemite#
All I can say is I can hardly wait to return...already. Next time I go...I will not worry about Lower Yosemite...and head straight to Tuolumne Meadows.
Other notes about Yosemite:
Hopefully one day you will get to travel to Yosemite. When you do, plan to visit the great city of San Francisco. In fact, you might as well plan to drive up the coast from Los Angeles to San Fran, and then make the three hour drive east to Yosemite and you have visited some of the finest scenery of America...and quite possibly the world.
The secrete to the beauty of the Yosemite lies in that the drive in is among the river on the valley floor with the mountains towering over the road. Unfortunately, it happens to be one of the most popular parks in the world. Which means everybody else wants to be there also. My recommendation is to spend only a little of your time in the valley. It is beautiful, no doubt, but you want to get to Tuolumne Meadows. That is the most beautiful of all of Yosemite!
1:30 - starts
7:49 - National Parks under attack
~11:00 - Not good looking...photography was probably a way to hide behind a camera.
16:00 - Parent commitment
30:00 - 1925 Break up with Virginia, then in 1927, decides he does want to be with her.
34:00 - Half Dome Photo - Long day of hiking, taking pictures with a cumbersome camera.
38:27 - First Photos Displayed to the world. 1930 Started his business.
40:00 - 1931 - Realization - Photography is perception. Analytical interpretation of the way things are. Photography is artistic.
41:00 - Pushing the depth of field
42:50 - Alfred Stieglitz - Father of Modern Photography (1865-1946) - comments on Ansel's work.
43:00 - Making a photograph is like making love. It's a passion.
45: - Magnificent light
46: - Aspen trees - lighting
47: - Composition. The love of making beauty, and the order of things.
48:45 - Comparison of photography to like playing a piano. Does a photo linger in your mind after you looked at it.
53: - Ansel shooting during the years of the depression was criticized, but he was making his own statement.
54 - 1936 - became the chairman of the Sierra Club as he started working as an activities.
55 - Missing something, contact life
57 - 1936 - Stieglitz offers him a one man show in his gallery, "An American Place"
59:30 - Emotional affair with Patsy English
1.03.00 - Quote from Robinson Jeffers? Does it matter if you hate yourself, at least love your eyes that can see, your mind that can hear the music, the thunder of the wings.
1.03.50 - Letter to Cedrick Wright about what mattered most. Ansel realizing what art should be.
1.04 - returns to Yosemite
1.07 - Sierra Nevada- John Muir Trail
1.08 - Roosevelt signs in "King's Canyon"
1.09.47 - Good view of Ansel on top of his car with an 8x10 View Camera
1.11 - Drops the horizon, opening up the sky.
1.12.18 - "Chance favoring the prepared mind" - one shot while driving down the road
1.14.30 - Working in the darkroom
1.18 - Known as Mr. Sierra Club. Main impact, symbols of the American Wilderness.
1.21 - 1950s, most of his best images had been produced.
1.23 - Moon at Half Dome, El Capitan Winter Sunrise - Both made late and are two of his best images.
1.23:40 - Bill Turnage takes over the Ansel archive and mass markets the first Fine Arts Photographer.
1.26 - Fall 1979 - Honored with Retrospective Exhibit at MODA in New York and featured on the front cover of Time.
1.26:30 - Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nations highest civilian honor, by President Jimmy Carter
1.27.50 - Visits Yosemite for the last time, not long after his 80th birthday.
1.28:21 - Anything manmade
1.29:06 - After Ansel died, Congress set aside land in his name. Then later, a peak was renamed Mount Ansel Adams.
1.30:55 - Adams pictures are anachronisms, the last of their kid
1.31:50 - His life encompasses the long national debate, that began before his life with declaration of the closing of the frontier and the question of who we are going to be. What does it mean to be American.
1.33:43 - We didn't want to be another Europe, we wanted to have places that were wild.