A Vis­ual Tour

Foreword Reviews - - Foresight Travel & Adventure -

Tony Sweet, Amherst Me­dia (JAN­UARY) Soft­cover $24.95 (128pp), 978-1-68203-390-6, PHO­TOG­RA­PHY

From the wild dance of the aurora bo­re­alis to the vivid greens of hillside mosses to the jewel tones of the long sum­mer twi­light, those who think of Ice­land as a drab, col­or­less place will be sur­prised by pho­tog­ra­pher Tony Sweet’s rev­e­la­tions of its time­less beauty. Ice­land’s min­i­mal­ist land­scapes boast wa­ter­falls; bril­liant red sun­sets; fields of blaz­ing wild­flow­ers; vi­brant green hills set against a bright blue sky; and ice that glit­ters like for­got­ten di­a­monds on its black vol­canic beaches.

The mas­sive, stark beauty of this “land of fire and ice” dwarfs signs of hu­man habi­ta­tion. Aban­doned build­ings, iso­lated and shrouded in mys­tery, dot the land­scape, giv­ing rise to a sense of loss, evok­ing im­ages of sturdy peo­ple un­afraid of soli­tude and pro­vok­ing ques­tions about who they were, why they left, and what hopes may have died with them in these bar­ren, windswept places.

Beyond record­ing the beauty and mys­tery of a lit­tle-known land, Sweet shares cre­ative and tech­ni­cal pho­tog­ra­phy tips: how sim­pli­fy­ing an im­age can en­hance its magic; how the col­ors of the land­scape “pop” when shot against a cloudy, white sky; how “swip­ing” an im­age (mov­ing the cam­era dur­ing a long ex­po­sure) can pro­duce in­ter­est­ing painterly ef­fects; and how the flow­ing grace of an S-curve can lure view­ers into a photo.

Prac­ti­cal as well as po­etic, the book also shares the dan­gers and chal­lenges posed by the land­scape and how best to meet them, as well as giv­ing ad­vice on lenses and help­ful apps; set­ting ex­po­sures; “fram­ing” a sub­ject to en­hance its im­pact; ex­per­i­ment­ing with in­frared pho­tog­ra­phy; the best times of the year to visit Ice­land; and more.

While we may never wish to pho­to­graph a scene in fifty-mile-per-hour sus­tained winds as Sweet has, all can en­joy his trib­ute to Ice­land’s rugged beauty and ap­pre­ci­ate its chal­lenges and de­lights.

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