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Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by Michael Penn, May 12, 2012.
Curious what others collect and what they're hoping for.
I don't collect books of any flavor, but if I did....it might be photography books. Subjects of interest to me would be origins of photography, the early practitioners, early experimental photography, pictorial history of the camera (camera porn), mid-century street, photos of the Great Depression, minimalist photography (and abstract).
With so much stuff available on the internet, I would gravitate towards books the combine great research and sharing knowledge as well as a great focus on the images (and quality printing). I don't collect books, but if I did, I would seek out quality (and be broker than I am now).
I don't collect photography books at all. I did, back in the 70s, when I acquired my first SLR and had NO idea what to do with it. But since then, nothing. I've acquired a few ebooks which I have then not read. I think I'd rather do, than read (about photography that is). I'll be dead before I quit reading fiction (scifi, mystery, murder and mayhem etc).
I'm not talking about "How to Books". I'm talking about about real photography books , monographs, retrospectives, etc, etc.
I must have over 500 great books. I still have a good 1st edition of The Decisive Moment .... I have the entire Winogrand collection, many signed. I have a thing for books but as the digital age has taken over for me, I've not kept up the collection. It's a shame because no other medium suites photography better then books.
I've learned as much from my books as I ever learned from my early days at PMA.
Books like Bresson will teach us Bresson's response to subject matter.
Winogrand's books on the other hand teaches us how he approached photography and life and the image is proof of his thoughts.
It may appear to be the same thing in the end but it's not. For Bresson and the many, we learn about their images.
With Winogrand, we learn about photography, him and ourselves.
Daido has much the same effect as I'm sure Michael can attest too.
I'm going upstairs to my books for a visit.....
I hope you seal that Decisive Moment. The ones that are left are disintegrating. The gravure printing is beautiful.
I get some of you started for cheap.
David Bradford, excellent street photography shot from a taxi in NYC
Drive-By Shootings by David Bradford (2000, Hardcover) 9783829028912 | eBay
Daido Moriyama: The World through My Eyes, A very broad retrospective.
Vivian Maier: Street Photographer
Robert Frank: The Americans
There's 4 books for about $100 that will blow away whatever you see on the web and maybe some will actually learn something than changing cameras every time a new one comes out.
I wouldn't class myself as a "collector" per se, but I do have quite a few photography books ranging from howtos to monographs.
Last week I bought two - Richard Heeps' Man's Ruin and Joel Sternfeld's First Pictures. I've got a few anthologies/retrospectives by Bresson, Parr, Leibowitz, Noton, McCurry and, my favourite photographer, Elliott Erwitt. I've got Koudelka's 69 and Jones Griffiths's Vietnam War. I buy the World Press Photo annually and have done since 2007.
I also like the Magnum and Life collections.
I've got the usual suspects by Joe McNally and have bought a couple by David DuChemin. Difficult to class these books as either howtos or collections of their images; they're really a combination of both.
I am a bit of a bibliophile in general but I particularly love big, hefty photobooks.
This is why I'll take photography books over images on the internet any day. This is Trent Parke in the massive book "Magnum Magnum". The image is 15" x 24" and for comparison you can see my Ricoh GRD in the top left corner.
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No not sealed. I used to have many valuable books in sleeves from Light Impressions. Now I just like to hold them and look at the photos. At any rate, they will all outlive me.
This last copy I'm selling at some point. The new owner can seal it.
I have more photography books than bookshelves, but, no, I'm not a collector. I read them daily.
Just because you collect doesn't mean you don't look through them.
A few of my favorites, among others, are: "An Inner Silence: The Portraits of Henri Cartier-Bresson;" "Arnold Newman: Five Decades;" and Life Magazine photographer and picture editor John Loengard's "Age of Silver: Encounters With Great Photographers."
The technical information you can pick up from "how-to" books is fine and has its place. But the essence of Photography and the accumulated wisdom of the great photographers resides in the type of books being discussed in this thread. Stimulating!
More titles, please.