April 10, 2006

Wilderness: The essence of a wild land - A Review

A photographic journey by Mark Humphries
"Even to enter a wild place with a disrespectful frame of mind is a form of violation". - Martin Hawes
"when we distroy wilderness we sever the taproots on which our society & survival depend."- Martin Hawes
Both the above quotations are excerpts from the introduction to this photographic journey of the Tasmanian wilderness. To clarify the matter, I am no expert when it comes to the wilderness or photography but I have seen my fair share of both. With my qualifications now clarified I can express my appreciation for how Mark has presented the Tasmanian wilderness in his book, 'Wilderness - The essence of a wild land'. The expressions at the outset really captured my attention and put me into a frame of mind where I could fully appreciate the beauty that Mark has captured of the Tasmanian wilderness.
Because I have experienced the Tasmanian wilderness in all its beauty I can appreciate how difficult it is to capture all its majesty in just a photo. There are some that have the rare gift to be able to capture a moment on film, these who have an acute awareness of natural beauty and its profound brilliance. Mark Humphries certainly has this ability. His book firstly prepares the disposition of the reader with two short wilderness journals, one is by Mark himself and the other by Martin Hawes (quoted above).
For me, these journals helped me to appreciate that I wasn't just about to be looking at pretty pictures but impressed upon me that these images & landscapes have the potential to affect the viewer on a very profound level.
I found Mark's photography to be fresh and original. Several pages in the book are dedicated to detailed close ups of ice, bark and flora. The detail captured in these is remarkable. In this way, Mark's photography can leave you awe struck by not only the colourful and varying landscapes but also from the finite detail found in the smallest of areas within them.
The presentation of the compilation is contemporary & well thought out. All of the photos have been carefully labelled with names and places, providing the viewer with all the information they need.
Another appealing factor about Mark's composition is that it is not oversized and the content is visually exciting from the beginning to the end. Its size is perfect so that it is not uncomfortable to flick through, it is also the perfect size for mailing to a friend or family member.
I was very impressed by the originality of this book's style and format, it is not bulky and uncomfortable to read and most of all it takes the viewer on a fantastic and exciting journey through some of Tasmania's prime wilderness. I recommend it to anyone who has an appreciation for the Tasmanian wilderness, order it online now at oliveimaging.com.

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