Inspired by light, passion and mystery. All images are copy-writed to myself, unless stated otherwise. No images may be used without consent.

Posts tagged ‘Ansel Adams’

Ansel Adams-The making of Moonrise, Hernandez

From Ansel Adams, in Examples:

“I had been photographing in the Chama Valley , north of Santa Fe . I made a few passable negatives that day and had several exasperating trials with subjects that would not bend to visualization. The most discouraging effort was a rather handsome cottonwood stump near the Chama River . I saw my desired image quite clearly, but due to unmanageable intrusions and mergers of forms in the subject my efforts finally foundered, and I decided it was time to return to Santa Fe . It is hard to accept defeat, especially when a possible fine image is concerned. But defeat comes occasionally to all photographers, as to all politicians, and there is no use moaning about it.

We were sailing southward along the highway not far from Espanola when I glanced to the left and saw an extraordinary situation – an inevitable photograph! I almost ditched the car and russed to set up my 8×10 camera. I was yelling to my companions to bring me things from the car as I struggled to change components on my Cooke Triple-Convertible lens. I had a clear visualization of the image I wanted, but when the Wratten No. 15 (G) filter and the film holder were in place, I could not find my Weston exposure meter! The situation was desperate: the low sun was trailing the edge of the clouds in the west, and shadow would soon dim the white crosses.

I was at a loss with the subject luminance values, and I confess I was thinking about bracketing several exposures, when I suddenly realized that I knew the luminance of the moon – 250 c/ft2. Using the Exposure Formula, I placed this luminance on Zone VII; 60 c/ft2 therefore fell on Zone V, and the exposure with the filter factor o 3x was about 1 second at f/32 with ASA 64 film. I had no idea what the value of the foreground was, but I hoped it barely fell within the exposure scale. Not wanting to take chances, I indicated a water-bath development for the negative.

Realizing as I released the shutter that I had an unusual photograph which deserved a duplicate negative, I swiftly reversed the film holder, but as I pulled the darkslide the sunlight passed from the white crosses; I was a few seconds too late!”

Moonrise over Hernandez

Research For Essay-Ansel Adams (Zone System)

The Zone System is a photographic technique for determining optimal film exposure and development, formulated by Ansel Adams and Fred Archer in 1939–1940. The Zone System provides photographers with a systematic method of precisely defining the relationship between the way they visualize the photographic subject and the final results. Although it originated with black and white sheet film, the Zone System is also applicable to roll film, both black and white and color, negative and reversal, and to digital photography.

Almost any scene of photographic interest contains elements of different luminance; consequently, the “exposure” actually is many different exposures. The exposure time is the same for all elements, but the image illuminance varies with the luminance of each subject element.

Exposure is often determined using a reflected-light exposure meter. The earliest meters measured overall average luminance; meter calibration was established to give satisfactory exposures for typical outdoor scenes. However, if the part of a scene that is metered includes large areas of unusually high or low reflectance, or unusually large areas of highlight or shadow, the “effective” average reflectance may differ substantially from that of a “typical” scene, and the rendering may not be as desired.

In the Zone System, measurements are made of individual scene elements, and exposure is adjusted based on the photographer’s knowledge of what is being metered: a photographer knows the difference between freshly fallen snow and a black horse, while a meter does not. Volumes have been written on the Zone System, but the concept is very simple just render light subjects as light, and dark subjects as dark, according to the photographer’s visualization. The Zone System assigns numbers from 0 through 10 to different brightness values, with 0 representing black, 5 middle gray, and 10 pure white; these values are known as zones.

Many small and medium-format cameras include provision for exposure compensation; this feature works well with the Zone System, especially if the camera includes spot metering, but obtaining proper results requires careful metering of individual scene elements and making appropriate adjustments.

To put Adams’ Zone system into easier to understand words, it involves light metering areas of your image and placing these tones onto a scale of black to white with 10 areas inbetween of the different tones. Once you find te tone you want use the aperture and shutter speed given on the light meter to achieve the perfect shot you visulised.

I have research Ansel Adams and his zone system to go in my essay about light in photographs and how it can be manipulated to change an image.

I am including this image Moonrise, Hernandez because of how Adams’ visulised how it would look after some manipulation in the darkroom. The image above is Adams’ final image how he wanted it to look, the image below is the actual image he took on location.

Ansel Adams

Ansel Easton Adams (February 20, 1902 – April 22, 1984) was an American photographer and environmentalist, best known for his black-and-white photographs of the American West and primarily Yosemite National Park.

For his images, he developed the zone system, a way to determine proper exposure and adjust the contrast of the final print. The resulting clarity and depth characterized his photographs. Although his large-format view cameras were difficult to use because of their size, weight, setup time, and film cost, their high-resolution ensured sharpness in his images.

He founded the Group f/64 along with fellow photographers Edward Weston and Imogen Cunningham, which in turn created the Museum of Modern Art’s department of photography.  Opposite to pictorialism!!! Adams’ timeless and visually stunning photographs are reproduced on calendars, posters, and in books, making his photographs widely recognizable.

His amazing photographs of nature inspire me to love my SLR film camera again, even thought I could never achieve the beautiful range of tones in my images. I really like black and white photography, but I find that once I get in the darkroom I don’t get the images that I would want to. It’s probably just that I need more practise, 3 years is not enough to be an expert, or an actual lesson on it 😉

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