Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Recent books

The three recent books out of the library are:

Venice from the Skies by Riccardo Roiter Rigoni and Debora Gusson.

Walk with me New York by Susan Kaufman.

Tones of Grace by Dave Brosha.

I loved Venice. I'd go back in a heartbeat if it wasn't for all the other tourists crowding it. There's more to see than where we got to, so I snatched it up as soon as I saw it. Then I was disappointed. It's helicopter photos, with a bit of history. Here I was and this is what I saw. Most of the book is the other islands near Venice, not the city itself. They didn't include a map. 

The New York book was better. It made me want to walk the city, so I suppose the book is a success from that point of view. There were some lovely (and extremely expensive) homes, and a surprising amount of greenery in what I had conceived of as a boring city space. Linda liked it for the garden photos, and what people have done with limited space.

Often reading about New York it seems like it's a big village where everyone knows each other. More accurately it's s conglomeration of villages, somewhat overlapping each other. The book included several small scale maps, so at least one could look at an ordinary street map and figure out where that neighbourhood is. It's probably better to read the book, or rather, the many photo books of New York, than to visit. I'm not likely to ever see the city in person. 

When we were in London, we were constantly amused to recognize scenes because a movie or TV show was filmed there. I'd imagine that the same is true of New York.  In fact I just checked, there are pages of location tours in New York.

Calgary has been used as a set location for various films and TV shows. I remember watching the first season of Fargo, when there's a winter scene of someone driving along with a city downtown in the background. The Bow building is prominent, and it took me right out of the show, since I instantly started thinking about where that camera had been situated, and what they had to screen out or screen in using digital wizardry to get the look that appears on screen.

The Brosha book is wonderful! If you're a photographer put a hold on it at the library, at the least. It's at The Camera Store for $50. I'm not sure I'll buy it, but it would be a good gift for a photographer, especially one that likes black and white.

I see great black and white photographs, and yearn to be able to create good photos that work without colour. (And with colour too, for that matter.) There's far more to it than using black and white film, or telling Lightroom to convert to black and white. He references Sebastiao Salgado, a well known photographer in black and white, and as it happens, I've read his book Genesis. You can get that one out of the library as well. 

Of the Day
Driftwood (NZ)

Driftwood (BC)



Film (new)

Film (old)
With the red 1995 Caravan in the background, that dates the photo late 1990's. We had it till 2004 or so. I'm trying to clear the ice blocking a storm drain.


  1. Great book recommendations. Thank you! I've been following Brosha's work for awhile and think he's amazing! Will check to see whether I can get my hands on a copy.

  2. Thank you for the book recommendation. The Film (new) entry is very appealing as it looks like a scene from a Calgary that no longer exists when the Calgary Tower ruled the skyline - very clever. I also like the bones and composition of the Peony image. There is drama there that could possibly be assisted by darkening the background and accentuating parts of the subject. Cheers, Sean


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