For me, photography is a passion, an obsession, therapy and a small source of income. Like most people, I learn by modeling others with similar interests and one of the most inspirational photographers I have ever paid attention to is Ansel Adams.
He was born in San Francisco and grew up in a visually stimulating place with a great view of the ocean. Playing piano was his first creative passion as a youth but he developed a love for photography after his father gave him a camera.
His most well-known photographs are black and white shots of landscapes in the southwest United States, but that is just part of his body of work. He dabbled in color later in life but I have always preferred his monochromatic work.
In addition to being a fine art and commercial photographer, he was also, at various times, an activist, teacher, magazine publisher and author.
I mostly know of him through his photography but today I found a web site full of quotes attributed to him. Here are a few of them:
“Photography is more than a medium for factual communication of ideas. It is a creative art."
"I believe the approach of the artist and the approach of the environmentalist are fairly close in that both are, to a rather impressive degree, concerned with the 'affirmation of life'."
"A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed, and is, thereby, a true manifestation of what one feels about life in its entirety..."
"I hope that my work will encourage self expression in others and stimulate the search for beauty and creative excitement in the great world around us."
"I eagerly await new concepts and processes. I believe that the electronic image will be the next major advance. Such systems will have their own inherent and inescapable structural characteristics, and the artist and functional practitioner will again strive to comprehend and control them."