Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Visions of Iceland

Joe Decker's book, Saga: Visions of Iceland, is well worth buying. (Or getting as a birthday present, which is how I got my copy from Debbie..) The photographs are superb as always, and the printing is up to his demanding standards. Seen through Joe's eyes, the stark, dramatic scenery of Iceland becomes almost abstract.

Some images are subtle, nearly monochromatic studies in pure form or pattern, like Black Mud Swirls. The pure black volcanic sands are background and foil to incandescently verdant grass in Grass and Volcanic Alluvium. This high-contrast image with its expanses of deep black and subtle layering of light must have presented serious printing challenges, but it looks good on the page.

Others show sky and land bleakly glacier-colored, grey and blue; rainbows, waterfalls, quiet streams; sunsets as bright and ominous as new lava flows. Decker sees and conveys the beauty in small details and broad landscapes.

The book is hardbound with a dust jacket. Bonus: the author picture (taken by Josh Andrews) is a vivid and revealing portrait of Joe.

Joe Decker is an internationally known, award-winning nature photographer who just keeps getting better and better. Buy his work now, before the price goes to Ansel Adams levels. Yes, he is that good.

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