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The Nature of Photographs : A Primer - Stephen Shore

The Nature of Photographs

A Primer

Paperback Published: 7th July 2010
ISBN: 9780714859040
Number Of Pages: 136

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The Nature of Photographs is the essential primer of photography, not only for students but for anyone with an interest in the medium.

This book grew out of a college course that Stephen Shore taught for many years. Its aim is not to explore photographic content - the subject of an image - but to describe the physical and formal attributes of a photographic print, the very elements that form the tools a photographer uses to define and interpret that content. By teaching us how to look at photographs and helping us to see the world the way the photographer may have seen it, Shore also teaches us a way of looking at the world around us.

The Nature of Photographs is a primary tool for critical analysis and the understanding of photography in general. As one of the photographers who established colour photography as a legitimate medium of artistic expression in the early 1970s and an influential and important teacher of both the theory and practice of photography, Stephen Shore is the ideal guide to the subject of 'how' to look at photographs. By putting himself in the shoes of the photographers, he imagines the concerns or approach to the subject or concept they may have had when they were taking the picture.

As well as a selection of Shore's own work, The Nature of Photographs contains images from all eras of photography, from classic images by Walker Evans, Brassai and Eugène Atget to more contemporary work by Bernd and Hilla Becher, Cindy Sherman, Joel Sternfeld, Thomas Struth, Richard Prince and Andreas Gursky. It includes all genres, such as street photography, fine art photography and documentary photography, as well as images by unknown photographers, be they in the form of a snapshot from the early days of photography or an aerial photograph taken as part of a geographical survey. Shore has selected images by, among others, Eugène Atget, Walker Evans, Diane Arbus, William Eggleston and Robert Adams, and offers an explanation as to how they 'work'. Together with his clear, intelligent and accessible text, Shore uses these works to demonstrate how the world in front of the camera is transformed into a photograph.


An essential resource for the Visual Artist & Photographers


The Nature of Photographs by Stephen Shore is a must have for visual artists that mainly work with photography, and anybody interested in developing a visual literacy. The writer is economical in describing and discussing the many photographs displayed in this book, but it becomes evident he is encouraging you to look and analyse the images, the purpose being to establish a visual literacy that helps us to be able to read and decode photographic images so that we are more conscious of how and why they appear to us the way they do, and affect us in certain ways, and the various 'mechanisms' employed to achieve this.

Wangaratta Victoria


The Nature of Photographs

5.0 1


'this book has the power to transform the way you view, and understand, photographic prints forever.' Black & White Photography 'intelligently written and beautifully composed ... insightful ...' Digital Photographer 'a lucid, perceptive and thought-provoking book' Exit 'The Nature of Photographs is stuffed with gorgeous prints, from classic images to contemporary pieces' Boston Phoenix 'A beautiful art photography book that will be the last textbook you need on the subject.' Tokion

The book is divided into four main chapters: The Physical Level, The Depictive Level, The Mental Level and Mental Modelling. It also includes a prologue by Stephen Shore and a full list of works.

ISBN: 9780714859040
ISBN-10: 0714859044
Audience: General
For Grades: 7+
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 136
Published: 7th July 2010
Publisher: Phaidon Press Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 24.5 x 21.0  x 1.2
Weight (kg): 0.6
Edition Number: 1