Friday, November 02, 2018

The Twilight Magic of Ansel Adams

November 2, 2018
   In the movie biz they call it the "magic hour," when the light gets long and the sunset dust makes for great cinema.

   In still photography there was one particular guy who was a genius at capturing this twilight magic.

   On this date, yesterday—Nov. 1—back in 1941, late in the afternoon on US 285, Ansel Adams sees the moon rising over Hernandez, New Mexico, stops the car and sets up on the roof of his woody and captures one of the most iconic images in the history of photography.

"Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico"

   The position of the moon over the snow clad mountains almost seems preordained but the real magic in the photograph is the subtle glow on the crosses in the cemetery. Adams made more than 1,300 prints of "Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico," during his career.

   Today, we would simply roll down the window and try to capture something like this with our iphone but when you realize how fleeting these moments are, and the amount of preparation Ansel had to do to even set up to get the shot, it is nothing short of amazing.

This photo of Ansel on top of his car
was taken in Yosemite, but this is
also how he got the shot at Hernandez.

"You don't make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved."
—Ansel Adams

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