Photography: The Whole Story

Photography: The Whole Story

  1. General Editor Juliet Hacking
  2. Foreword by David Campany
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  • ISBN 9780500290453
  • 24.50 x 17.50 cm
  • Flexibound PLC (with jacket)
  • 576pp
  • With over 1000 colour illustrations
  • First published 2012
‘The definitive guide for students of photography or those wanting to know how to read a photograph … a comprehensive overview … a book rich with favourites and discoveries’ – Good Book Guide
‘Superb … instructive and fascinating … a wide-ranging, comprehensive and informative book that is also a pleasure to read’ – Black & White Photography

In a world where billions of snapshots are taken every year, why are some photographers and their works considered so significant?

People have always tried to capture moments as images and over the centuries it was the task of artists to select subjects and set them down, but in 1839 a new medium appeared: photography. Originally messy and time-consuming, the photograph rapidly evolved to become a means of capturing the world 'in the blink of an eye'.

If you love photography and would like to know more, Photography: The Whole Story is a celebration of the most inspiring photographs that have come from this very modern medium. Illustrated, in-depth essays cover every photographic genre, from early portraits and tableaux to the digital montages, split-second sports images and conceptual photographs of today.

The book begins with a succinct overview of photography, placing it in the context of the social and cultural developments that have taken place since its arrival. The book then traces chronologically the rapid evolution of photographic style, period by period and movement by movement.

Photography: The Whole Story

The ideas and works of key photographers are assessed to reveal what motivated them and what each was striving to achieve. Detailed cultural and individual artist timelines clarify historical context.

Supporting each essay are close analyses of key works that single out the characteristics of each period – such as use of colour and visual metaphor, quirks of composition and technical innovations – enabling us to grasp each work’s full meaning. Here are the tiny but telling details of social portraits; the stark, graphic qualities of urban landscapes; the erotic, or the undertones of nude studies; and the humour, anger or pathos of conceptual works.

Juliet Hacking has been Programme Director of the MA in Photography (contemporary and historical) at Sotheby’s Institute of Art since 2006. Before that, she was for three years Head of the Photographs Department of Sotheby’s in London. Juliet has worked as a visiting lecturer at the Universities of Derby and Reading and at the Courtauld Institute, and curated the exhibition ‘Princes of Victorian Bohemia: Photographs by David Wilkie Wynfield’ for the National Portrait Gallery, London.