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Framed artwork 24.7 x 29.9 cm
Photographs of the desert regions often yield shadows that are simply large, flat black areas without any detail whatsoever, which is not what you see on location. With careful exposure and development of the negative, this detail in the shadows can be brought out.
By camping on the roof of his car on a 5-foot by 8-foot platform, getting up early enough for dawn, and walking across the dunes, Adams was able to get good results. See more
Previously, on other occasions, he had arrived too late for sunrise, or had problems with windblown sand. The nature of the sand dunes is such that they are constantly windblown and shifting, so a found position can only be used for a short time. On a later visit, weeks or months later, the same view will simply not be there anymore.
The photo was taken with a 4 x 5 camera with a yellow filter, which on this occasion separates the foreground tones rather than darkening the sky appreciably. Very shortly after taking the photos, Adams returned to his car and left the rising temperatures on the dunes. He had also prepared for the occasion by painting his camera bodies with white paint. Traditional camera bodies are matte black, but an experiment conducted at his San Francisco home on a mild sunny afternoon showed that white-painted bodies stayed significantly cooler than their black counterparts.
About Ansel Adams
American photographer, born in San Francisco, Ansel Adams is one of the pioneers of photography.
He made his first photographs in 1916 in Yosemite National Park, California. From the beginning, he showed a passion for America's magnificent landscapes. Intended to become a pianist, his meeting with Paul Strand in 1930 would leave an indelible mark on him, confirming his vision of a photography that was pure and devoid of artifice. See more
In 1932, Ansel Adams founded the now famous "f/64" group with exceptional photographers such as Edward Weston, John Paul Edwards and Williard van Dyke. Their line of conduct: close the diaphragm to its maximum - that of the photographic cameras of the time - and capture the landscapes with the greatest precision and the smallest details, thanks to a depth of field extending from the foreground to infinity.
Ansel Adams will devote a large part of his life - and work - to American national parks. Through the purity of his images, he will contribute to their preservation and arouse the general public's enthusiasm for nature, even encouraging the creation of new protected areas. All the photographs of Ansel Adams National Parks together make up 24 albums.