Epic Poetry for Epic Landscape Photography: Exalt Fine Art Nature Photography with the Poetic Wisdom of John Muir, Emerson, Thoreau, Homer's Iliad & Odyssey by Dr. Elliot McGucken
English | 2018 | ISBN: N/A | ASIN: B06W2KZGG8 | 265 pages | EPUB | 14 Mb
Take your landscape photography to new heights by leveraging the vast, forgotten power of epic, Homeric poetry! And enjoy Dr. E's epic landscape photography along the way!
The legendary outdoorsman John Muir, who greatly inspired Ansel Adams, saluted the inspirational qualities of epic poetry, writing, "I remember as a great and sudden discovery that the poetry of the Bible, Shakespeare, and Milton was a source of inspiring, exhilarating, uplifting pleasure; and I became anxious to know all the poets, and saved up small sums to buy as many of their books as possible. Within three or four years I was the proud possessor of parts of Shakespeare's, Milton's, . . . and quite a number of others."
As sure as epic poetry including Milton's Paradise Lost helped inspire John Muir to form the Sierra Club and battle for the National Parks system, epic poetry can enhance and exalt every landscape photographers' art.
Not so long ago, great outdoorsmen and artists such as Ansel Adams, John Muir, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Henry David Thoreau reveled in epic poetry, and this book brings that forgotten spirit on back. Indeed, the most important element of landscape photography-the epic poetry of the immortal soul-oft seems to be the least discussed today.
This tome belongs in every landscape photographer's kit, for not only does Homeric poetry offer a map to the deeper soul by which one can find that greater inspiration, but it also provides a new lens through which the landscape has never seemed so sharp nor magnificent. Epic poetry provides a most epic filter for framing, capturing, and exalting the very soul of fine art. For epic poetry contains story, and as Aristotle noted, "story is the soul of a work." And as the soul alone is immortal, all lasting art must be graced by its deep eternity.
This book contains works from Muir's poetic heroes, as well as many more, ranging from Homer, to Shakespeare, to Milton, to Wordsworth, to Keats, to Whitman, to Melville, to Dickinson, to Emerson, to Thoreau.
When the legendary John Muir hosted Emerson in Yosemite, he could not contain his excitement at being in the presence of his literary hero who, alongside Thoreau, had mentored and inspired his own poetic literary style. Emerson saw Muir as "The Thoreau of the Sierras." Muir would go on to become Ansel Adam's literary hero, with his writings appearing in many of Adams' photography books. And yet, today, photographers and epic men of letters with literary heroes seem few and far-between. This book aims to change that, as it teaches of that element which is far more important than Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube in advancing and enhancing one's photography. It teaches of the poetry of the immortal soul-that which can guide, inspire, and exalt your photography to new heights.
For the past ten years, Dr. E has trekked thousands of miles through California and the American Southwest, through Yosemite, the High Sierras, and Joshua Tree; across the Colorado Plateau, Grand Escalante Staircase, Arizona and Utah. And riding in his car and backpack have been tattered copies of the Great Books and Classics ranging from Emerson, to Thoreau, to Muir, to Shakespeare, to Dante, to Homer. And thus this book is filled with Dr. E's favorite epic poetry alongside the epic photography it inspired.
The most anthologized poem of all time is John Keats' "To Autumn." Reading its first lines, one sees that poets compose their art of the same materials found in epic landscape photography:
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees.
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