Ansel Adams


Ansel Easton Adams was born in San Francisco in 1902, the only child of
Charles and Olive Adams. He grew up in a house overlooking the Golden
Gate Bridge and had a strong appreciation for beauty. By 1908 Adams was
an enormously curious and gifted child, and began a precarious and
largely unsuccessful journey through the rigid structure of the public
school system. In 1914 Adams taught himself to play the piano and
excelled at his serious study of music, however he despised the
regimentation of a regular education, and was taken out of school. For
that year, his father bought him a season pass to the Panama-Pacific
Exposition, which he visited nearly every day, and began to receive
private scholastic instruction from tutors. In 1916 Adams convinced his
parents to take a family vacation in Yosemite National Park. It was
here that he took his first picture at the age of 14 with a box Brownie
camera given to him by his parents. Ansel immediately developed an
enthusiastic interest in both photography and the nati In 1931 he began
writing a photography column for The Fortnightly. He could no longer
keep up with orders for his prints or requests for him to exhibit. In
1932, Adams with Imogen Cunningham, Willard Van Dyke, Edward Weston,
and other proponents of pure photography, founded Group f.64, and was
part of the renowned Group f.64 exhibition at the M. H. de Young
Museum, San Francisco. In 1933 his son Michael was born and two years
later his daughter Anne was born. Always striving to improve the field
of photography he developed his Zone System technique of exposure and
development control while teaching at the Art Center School in Los
Angeles. For his accomplishments he was granted the Guggenheim
Fellowship, so that he could continue his photography. In 1949 he
becomes a consultant to the newly founded Polaroid Corporation. For
many years he continued to photograph commercially, most extensively
for Universities in California. In 1959 he moderated a series of five
films for television, once again demonstrating h On April 22 1984 Ansel
Easton Adams died of heart failure aggravated by cancer. Major stories
appeared on all primary television networks and on the front page of
most newspapers nationwide. A commemorative exhibition and memorial
celebration was held in Carmel. California Senators Alan Cranston and
Pete Wilson sponsored successful legislation to create an 
Ansel Adams

Wilderness Area of more than 100,000 acres between Yosemite National Park and the John Muir Wilderness Area. After his death he was unanimously elected as an honoree of the International Photography Hall of Fame. In 1985 Mount Ansel Adams, a 11,760-foot peak located at the head of the Lyell Fork of the Merced River on the southeast boundary of Yosemite National Park, was officially named on the first anniversary of his death. His home in California, over-looking the Pacific Ocean was designated a historical landmark, and his wife and children continue to run his estate out of this home. His Photography Ansel Adams is the foremost portrayer of the American land and is world renowned for his visionary adoration of natural beauty. Although preferring black and white photography, Adams did not limit himself to it. He is famous for his use and revolutionary views of straight photography. He looks for quality of light, contrast, shape, and most of all beauty. His photographs all pay special attention to detail, plus a definition and extreme depth of field required to achieve a sharp clear image. Inspired by the striking contrast of Weston's photography, the clarity of Stieglitz's, and his father's passion and love of nature, Adam's Photography is unlike anyone else's. In one of his more famous photographs, Moon and Half Dome, Yosemite National Park (see Appendix A), his awe and respect of nature is truly demonstrated. The photograph accurately demonstrates the sense of natural magnificence, and equality. The image is in perfect balance, and the use of texture, and contrast is typical of an Adam's photog Adams was a man who had a profound love of his world, his art and his family. There is no one way to describe Ansel Adams because he was so effective in everything he did. Husband, Father, Writer, Photographer, Humanitarian, Conservationist, and Renowned Pianist, Adams was celebrated at each, and loved for each as well. Where many artists are not recognized until after their deaths, Adams's was such an exceptional photographer that the world could not ignore his talents. Long after his death Ansel Adams will never be forgotten. Appendix A Bibliography Ansel Adams Home Page. WWW Library. +  

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