JOHN SEXTON PHOTOGRAPHY NEWSLETTER
- A NOTE FROM JOHN
- ANSEL ADAMS FILM TO AIR ON PBS APRIL 21st
- JOHN TO PRESENT LECTURE ON ANSEL ADAMS IN TUCSON
- WORKSHOPS UPDATE
- 1902 - A GREAT YEAR FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS... AND OTHERS
- SOME THOUGHTS ON PHOTOGRAPHY... AND OTHER TOPICS
It is a warm sunny day in Carmel Valley. I haven't seen a lot of the outdoor world for the past few weeks -- make that months! I have been "chained" to my enlarger attempting to complete long overdue printing projects, and surprisingly, I have made some real headway.
Next week Anne and I are off to instruct a workshop in Yosemite Valley for the Ansel Adams Gallery. I haven't taught a workshop in Yosemite for more than ten years. It will be good to be back in a workshop environment with the magical granite walls of the Valley. My first workshop experience -- which literally changed my photography, and my life -- was the Ansel Adams Workshop in 1973 in Yosemite.
Last week we completed another session of The Expressive Black and White Print workshop. We had a great time with a fine bunch of workshop participants. It is amazing, and encouraging, to me that there are still so many people interested in working hard to learn the craft and aesthetics of photography. See below for information on upcoming workshops.
Anyway, I had better get back to the darkroom... back to the dungeon!!!
NEW ANSEL ADAMS DOCUMENTARY FILM TO AIR ON PBS APRIL 21st
On Sunday, April 21 at 9:00 pm (Eastern and Pacific Time), in honor of Earth Day, the popular PBS documentary series, "American Experience," presents "Ansel Adams: A Documentary Film." This new 90-minute film is written and directed by Ric Burns, and co-produced by Sierra Club Productions and Steeplechase Films. The documentary weaves together archival footage, photographic images, dramatic readings of the artist's own writing, and interviews with leading photographers, historians, curators, naturalists, as well as Adams' family, friends and colleagues, to tell the story of a man who was at once a visionary photographer, a pioneer in photographic technique, and an ardent crusader for the cause of environmentalism.
In making the biographical film, Burns blazed trails of his own through the Sierra to capture the essence of Adams' unique relationship with his subject matter. "To get to the heart of what so inspired Ansel Adams, we literally followed in his footsteps," said Burns. "We lugged our cameras up sheer rock faces and hiked the winding trails that led Ansel to his photographic revelations. And they led us to Ansel." Burns' dramatic footage fluidly juxtaposed with the photographer's extraordinary work places Adams' photographs in their natural context. More than any other artist of the twentieth century, Adams helped transform the meaning of wilderness in America, and changed what people thought about their own land.
A very informative companion web site for the documentary is available at http://www.PBS.org/amex/ansel. It is worth taking the time to visit this site.
Be sure to check your local listings for exact broadcast time in your area.
JOHN SEXTON LECTURE - ANSEL ADAMS: PHOTOGRAPHER, MENTOR, FRIEND
John will be presenting a slide lecture on Ansel Adams at the Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona in Tucson on Thursday, May 9 at 7:00 pm.
This entertaining, and informative, personal recollection by John will explore the nuances of Ansel's renowned photographic techniques using slides of Adams' best-known prints, along with accompanying negatives. The negatives will be transformed on the screen through the creative steps used by Adams to create his masterful prints. The event is free, and open to the public.
Sponsored by the Center for Creative Photography
University of Arizona
Tucson, Arizona 85721-0103
As noted above, the 2002-2003 workshop program is off to yet another flying start. The workshop enrollment is solid, and in fact a number of the workshops for the rest of the year are already filled. This year we are pleased to have a particularly strong response from overseas photographers. We already have participants enrolled from Norway, Spain, and New Zealand, along with Canada and Mexico.
There are a few workshops that still have openings:
The 16th annual Southwest Landscape workshop that Ray McSavaney and I co-instruct May 12th to 18th has a couple of spots available due to recent participant cancellations. This workshop is nearly always a "sell out." So, if you have wanted to attend in the past, and have time available next month, contact us.
The Expressive Black and White Print, February 4-9, 2003 and April 1-6, 2003. There are still a few spaces available for these two sessions of this extremely popular workshop.
Feel free to contact us about getting on a waiting list for any workshop. It costs nothing, and we do have cancellations from time to time.
To download a complete 2002-2003 workshop brochure in PDF format follow this link:
(Note: Link no longer available)
1902 - A GREAT YEAR FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS... AND OTHERS!
Nearly everyone that receives this newsletter is by now well aware of the fact that 2002 is the centennial of the birth of noted photographer (and hero to many of us!) Ansel Adams. Well, 1902 seems to have been a great year for great individuals. Not only was Ansel Adams born on February 20, 1902, but April 18, 1902 was the birth date of noted photographer, Wynn Bullock. In addition, on February 4, 1902 photographer Manuel Alvarez Bravo was born, and he is still alive in Mexico! Noted author, John Steinbeck was born on February 27, 1902 -- truly a vintage year for creative people!!!
On February 20th, I was conducting a workshop here at my studio and precisely at 5:00 pm (the time Ansel and Virginia enjoyed cocktails on a regular basis) the entire workshop group joined in a toast to his life and his luminous legacy of photography and dedicated passion for environmental conservation.
I am looking forward to lifting a glass on April 18th to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Wynn Bullock's birth. I will never forget the time I first saw an original Wynn Bullock print at the Pasadena Museum of Modern Art, where Wynn Bullock's photographs were included in an exhibition with two other great photographers, Edward Weston and Ansel Adams. The mystery and surreal quality of those photographs provided a strong influence on my own work. I was fortunate to attend a workshop with Wynn Bullock in Yosemite the following year, and to visit his home in Monterey three times prior to his death in November of 1975.
SOME THOUGHTS ON PHOTOGRAPHY... AND OTHER TOPICS
Memorable comments by noted photographers, and others:
"Photography is 90% sheer brutal drudgery, and 10% inspiration!"
- Brett Weston
"There is only ONE difference between success and failure. Failure takes a lot fewer tries."
"Almost all photographers have incurred large expenses in the pursuit of tiny audiences, finding the wonder they'd hoped to share is something few want to receive."
- Robert Adams from "Why People Photograph"
"Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it."
CONTACT US WITH QUESTIONS, OR COMMENTS:
Post Office Box 30
Carmel Valley, CA 93924
THE FINE PRINT
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Copyright © 2002 John Sexton. All rights reserved.