DAN WINTERS ROAD TO SEEING PDF
My good friend Bill Reeves recently bought me a copy of “Road to Seeing” by Dan Winters. I've always known Dan Winters as being a quite. After beginning his career as a photojournalist for a daily newspaper in southern California, Dan Winters moved to New York to begin a celebrated career that. Road to Seeing by Dan Winters, , available at Book Depository with free delivery worldwide.
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Road To Seeing (). Buy on resourceone.info. After beginning his career as a photojournalist for a daily newspaper in southern California, Dan Winters moved . I am at a loss for a quick way to describe Dan Winters' just-shipped book, Road to Seeing. That's because it defies nearly any category of photo book I have seen. Road to Seeing book. Read 20 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. After beginning his career as a photojournalist for a daily newspape.
Sort order. Mar 04, Ken rated it it was amazing.
There are books that I get to the end of with relief and others I get to the end with some sadness that it was over. This book fits in the latter category. The end snuck up on me. When I finished I sat there for a while, thinking it over. I have been going through this book slowly over the past few weeks, and now that it is complete I will miss it.
Since this is an art book I should note the book's physical characteristics. The pages are t There are books that I get to the end of with relief and others I get to the end with some sadness that it was over.
The pages are thick. The photos are printed well, and type is nice. Beyond that I didn't notice the design, which is good, I only notice it when I think it is a problem. Looking at a few examples now I like how the pictures are given space and nothing is crowded.
The book is part biographical. Some of this I heard pieces of during an interview with Dan Winters.
I think it may have been on NPR. That particular detail is lost in my memory, but I didn't forget his words.
That will be true for the additional items I read in this book. There are parts that I will easily remember for a very long time. There is a section in the book where he walks us through some pictures and his approach to them. That part feels a little like Gregory Heisler's 50 Portraits book. I like reading these stories.
My take-a-way from this section and Mr. Heisler's book is to always approach a picture with intent and planning. And always have a Plan B. He also included section on personal photographs.
There are two of his son in an older truck that I thought were amazing. There are other things throughout the book. There is a whirlwind tour of the history of early photography, mentions of various alternative ways to make photos or use photographic materials, illustration, music, beekeeping, carpentry, model making, space program This is the kind of book where I can't say read it because you will learn XYZ. I have no idea what you will get from it, but I know you will get something out of it.
It is interesting to see inside the mind of an artist. Jul 17, Joshua Tintner rated it it was amazing Shelves: I finished this book with a deeper appreciation for Dan Winters' photos, but also with a profound respect for the man behind the images. This is the first photo book where the photographer's words touched me more than his images, and that is not intended to take anything away from his images which include photographs, photograms, collage. This is Dan Winters as teacher and mentor; yes, he provides various levels of instruction on making great images although no light-setups or detailed tech i I finished this book with a deeper appreciation for Dan Winters' photos, but also with a profound respect for the man behind the images.
This is Dan Winters as teacher and mentor; yes, he provides various levels of instruction on making great images although no light-setups or detailed tech info, as are found in many photo books , but he reveals that, for him, equally important to the technical training and discipline is a sense of respect and reverence for life and the world.
The photographer as philosopher Mar 27, Vince Hemingson rated it it was amazing.
This is a must have book for photographers and photography book collectors. If you don't know Dan Winters work, you should. The Road to Seeing is a passionate, considered, thoughtful and insightful autobiographical examination of his career, and the mentors and photographic work that influenced his personal style and evolution as an artist.
This will be a book that you can go back to time and again, and you'll take away something new every time. This is a great read, not just for the photography enthusiast, but anyone with an interest in art. Dan Winters goes far beyond the technical aspects of his shots, he delves into the entire process including the inspiration that went into his work as well as any lasting effects they may have engendered. There is a particularly poignant story about his coverage of a forest fire fighting squad.
Read this book, you will not regret it. Dec 27, Eric Gitonga rated it it was amazing. This is a superb book! Well worth every single penny.
Dan Winters does a great job detailing his journey to becoming the artist he is today. And the photographs included in the book are simply amazing. I also got to learn quite a bit of photography history, which he touches on very well.
Aug 09, Steve Losh rated it really liked it. A great book. It's a bit heavy at first but see it through and you'll love it. Aug 21, Ryan Watkins rated it it was amazing Shelves: This book is part autiobiography and part coffee table book. Winters starts the book with an autiographical look at his career and then transitions into talking about specific commercial images he has photographed.
Next he transitions to other art work of his like illustration, photograms, and xerographs. He finishes the book my discussing his personal work which includes a lengthy explanation of the history of street photo Dan Winters The Road to Seeing is one of the most beautiful books I own. He finishes the book my discussing his personal work which includes a lengthy explanation of the history of street photography.
The Road to Seeing is mostly comprised of photographs; not only Winters' work but also images from other artists that have inspired Winters. The Road to Seeing can be read much quicker than your average page book due to the large text, pages with just a sentence long quote, and pages which are just photographs. Highly recommended. Sep 03, Kima Sargsyan rated it it was amazing Shelves: All-in-all, it is a gorgeous book that I highly recommend everybody to invest in if you are interested in photography.
Dan shares so much valuable information about the history of photography, the works of various photographers and interesting stories behind some iconic photos.
Amazing book Amazing book.
I highly recommend it to anyone who interested in photography. It is deep personal feelings and experience of one photographer, but beautifully written. Dec 06, Peter rated it it was amazing. As technically brilliant as Winters' photography can be, this book's title says it all.
Seeing is a journey, an exercise whether you shoot with a smartphone or a Hasselblad. May 27, Richard rated it it was amazing. I'd rate this as one of the best photo-based books I've ever read. Note, this is not a how-to book, but the perceptive reader will find a wealth of inspiration within its pages on what moves a photographer to make an image.
As Dan Winters emphasizes from the beginning page, a firm grasp of the subtleties of our lives can only be obtained by stopping, and savoring the moments we are living. Being conscious of what we are experiencing, and not simply engaging in busy activity, is how we grow our a I'd rate this as one of the best photo-based books I've ever read.
Being conscious of what we are experiencing, and not simply engaging in busy activity, is how we grow our awareness and perception. And this is where photography becomes valuable, because it allows us to hold time literally before us. Winters has spent his working life pursuing golden moments of photographic creativity. His book contains many examples of the works which have influenced him. Alfred Stieglitz and Henri Cartier-Bresson provided some of his most profound perceptive moments as a student and viewer, although he provides numerous more contemporary examples, along with commentary, printed on extremely high quality paper.
This book truly is a treasure. The book is written as a personal history of Winters journey of discovery of various creative outlets. It's clear from the outset that the book is not a literal prescription on how to follow the author's steps to artistic excellence, since no one else would ever have all of Winters' wonderful life experiences. He emphasizes that creative growth doesn't derive from comparing one person's worth against others; it is the product of realizing great photographs come from those who capitalize on their originality.
In other words, original works of expression result from those who produce photographs using their particular viewpoint, knowing each new moment is unique. The heart of the book, of course, is its collection of Dan Winters' work. This includes his commercial photographs as well as his fine art.
His unique vision is shown in some of his earlier black and whites: A ticker tape parade, with only the falling tape in the frame; the Statue of Liberty, with only the crown and raised arm showing above the corner of the base, looking up; a blimp photographed when only its front end has appeared in the sky behind the roof edge of a building. Somehow, there's something about this collection of images that make you want to stop and think about them.
I'd call it the time before he had the fame allowing him to do celebrity portraits are usually black and white images of people who aren't smiling and posing for the viewer's attention, but instead are placed in their natural elements, compelling the viewer through selective focus and camera angle, to interpret what is going on inside the frame of the picture.
Winters has, naturally, established a continuing reputation as a photographer of celebrities. These black and white and color images are quite striking. He has a great facility for getting extremely revealing photographs of famous people. He freely acknowledges that some of his photo treatments have resulted in criticism, but he makes it plain that he isn't in the business to meet everyone's preconceived expectations. Centrally located in the book is a collection of celebrity images taken for the 40th anniversary of "New York" magazine in which actors associated with New York the city are shot in a most un-Hollywood style.
There are even some stills from some of his early film projects. Seek to please yourself, and remember: Dan Winters is a talented portrait photographer— and sees portraiture as a collaboration between the photographer and subject.
In the book, Dan outlines his working method with his subjects:. To start off, Dan is very transparent with his subjects. He communicates how he personally works, and shares his own expectations in terms of the image he wants to make:.
Varying approaches can yield vastly different results, so this working agreement is vital. I will usually describe what my expectations are and the type of photograph I would like to make on that day, as well as the level of participation I expect from them. I also provide any specific details that give the sitter a well-rounded idea of my general process.
I welcome the subject to voice any concerns or ideas they might have, any particular angles they favor, and the type of direction that works best for them. However at the same time, Dan often has a good idea of what he wants from the shoot— and can direct his subjects too. But the importance of this is having mutual respect:. This not only allows me to guide the shoot in the direction I would like it to go, but also relieves the subject of the responsibility of having to generate material for me.
Individuals in the creative world— actors and other visual artists with whom I often work— are aware of the camera, and of the artistic process in general. For these sessions, there is a mutual respect and a peer dynamic between us, as well as a reverence for the photographic process and its capabilities. Though not the norm, this working method can allow for a wonderful collaboration and has provided results that I very possibly would not have coaxed out of the sitter.
Once again, that response may not necessarily be one I would have imagined on my own, but it is decidedly genuine. When making portrait photographs, my aesthetic may vary but I always try to make a photograph I feel represents both a conscious effort and a mutual agreement between my subject and myself.
There are many different ways to shoot street photography. Similar to what Dan said— when you ask someone permission to take their photo, semantics word choices matter.
So as a quick tip: Give people the opportunity to goof around, pose how they would like— but also have an idea of how you would like your subjects to look. Sometimes I will ask people to look away into the distance, look downwards, or even cover their faces with their fingers in a certain way. I sometimes ask people to show off their jewelry, sunglasses, or outfits. When people are stiff, I often ask them to jump up and down to get some blood flowing — which helps them relax.
Other times, I will talk with people and joke around— and while they are talking or laughing, I will make more photos.
Even though Dan Winters has a strong creative vision— he tries his best to be flexible in his work. For example, he pre-visualizes what he wants out of his work— but tries not to become too attached.
My rule of thumb is to have a good Plan A, but always be receptive to and actively seek out a Plan B. Dan also shares his more philosophical views on flexibility and life— and the importance of living in the moment:. Knowing when to say yes and when to say no is always a balancing act, one I continue to fine-tune for myself. I feel that when things work out, they were meant to be, and I live in gratitude for each and every experience that saying yes has provided me.
I think we need flexibility and looseness when it comes to street photography. However, still leave some room for flexibility. Every day is different. In that regard, I will change gears— and try to stay open and receptive to any other potential street photo opportunities around me.
Furthermore as a philosophical point— I think it is important to have flexibility in life. For example, sometimes we might have a plan to shoot for an entire weekend without any interruptions. Rather, go with the flow. Figure out what else you can photograph whether it is portraits of your sick kid, or whatever. Life is unpredictable. We need to be like bamboo and bend when necessary. Photographers often get caught up in the technical parts of photography— but forget what the most important thing is: Dan Winters is a pretty technical photographer and is trained in many different formats — but ultimately all he cares about is the image:.
Image-making is image-making. To me, the question is irrelevant. I have no need to choose one method of capture over the other. The photograph is all that matters to me.
Dan shares the personal differences he has between film and digital and ultimately how each medium has its own merits:. I enjoy processing film and experiencing the magic of pulling a wet roll of negatives off a development spool and holding it up to the light.
I came out of this era, and for that I am grateful. I am not attached to any judgements one way or another. Each methods has its own merits. I can imagine the profundity of the moment in or when Dr. However digital is just another medium to make images:.
The contents and structure of the frame are what inform a photograph. Using a digital camera does not facilitate this. It acts the same way as any camera: It records the moment that the photographer wishes. In my photographs of shuttle launches, for example, the cameras I used were able to record at a resolution and frame rate not possible with a comparable photo chemical based capture system.
Likewise, digital photography has made it possible to quickly access the manner in which exposures balance when using an electronic flash. The simple device was advertised as foolproof, and Kodak assured that everyone who purchased a Brownie was a photographer. Dan although shoots much of his professional work on large-format even sees the smartphone as a great way to make images:. I make photographs with it that I would not normally make, many of which I love.
The phone allows me to photograph more frequently than ever before, and allows me to stay connected to that part of my process. However, it should not be at the core of our work. Ours should be a pursuit of the soul. As someone who shoots both film 35mm, medium-format and digital APS-C, smartphone I know the benefits of both. I love shooting film because it gives me a more zen-like experience, I love the aesthetic film grain is sublime , and the slowness waiting to get it developed.
I love shooting digital for the convenience instant gratification , the ability to share quickly and easily on Instagram when shooting with a phone , and how democratic it is everyone can shoot street photography with a phone or a cheap digital camera.
I hear the debate between film and digital a lot. Ultimately I prefer film— but that is a personal choice. It is like the difference between liking vanilla or chocolate ice cream. It comes down to personal preference. But I do agree with Dan— it is ultimately the image that matters. How does the image challenge you to view the world in a different way? It is the emotional reaction of the image that matters the most.
So with your street photography— seek to create images with soul. Fuck the medium. Whether it is shot on a medium-format or an iPhone, as long as the image makes you feel something in your heart— you are doing your job as a photographer.
However I came upon an interesting psychological study— that apparently when you make photos of an event, you are less likely to remember it.
The Road To Seeing by Dan Winters - Book Preview
So now I have been making a conscious choice when not to make photos. So for example, I try not to take photos of my food anymore. Rather, I try to enjoy the taste and the experience. Photograph that which really really matters a lot to you— and you want to create a physical document and record of it. So for me, I take my street photography really seriously— as well as documenting the life of me and Cindy.
But for everything else, I try to just enjoy the experience. Although he is famous for his commercial portrait work, his interest includes illustration, multi-media, and much much more. Dan shares the pursuit that he has of making great images — but along the way, how he has discovered patterns in his work and his voice:. Always look for that picture. I have practiced this philosophy my entire career.
I always try to shoot portfolio-worthy images. As every photographer knows, the great images are elusive. They do, however, become apparent when one is actively looking. It is basically noticing that which you are noticing. This is a lifelong practice. One must become conscious of the patterns in his or her work and of the sensibility that forms as a result. These are the building blocks, which allow us to consciously develop a unique photographic voice. This practice transcends technique.
It was his great compassion and love of humanity that initially led him to photography, and he used the medium to effect social change. He photographed children imprisoned in dark factories and coalmines, along with newsboys and bootblacks toiling on the streets of New York. His projects had largely been bankrolled by various government agencies; over time, he found it increasingly difficult to secure funding, and he died bankrupt and broken.
After his death, his photographs and negatives were offered to the Museum of Modern Art. They declined. The museum may not have recognized their importance at the time. The staff there needed no explanation as to their value to humanity. Dan Winters believes that technique is only a small part of finding our voice as photographers.
The reason we make photos— the impetus that drives us. Dan shares the importance of finding his own voice, which is taking a multi-disciplinary approach:. Art is language, and its fluency, though never fully achieved, is dependent upon diligent practice. The manner in which one creates stems from a singular place, but can manifest itself physically in many ways. Looking at his filmography, Kubrick cannot be classified as anything other than an auteur.
His career has long been a model to me and has inspired me to stay stimulated while creating vastly different kinds of images. It is merely a starting point:. The innumerable ways in which the same tools and materials can manifest themselves in a finished piece is staggering. Art is never the sum total of the materials that compose it. Art transcends materials. Materials are merely a starting point.
We use certain tools and techniques to express ourselves in terms of communicating a certain message:. More often than not, this categorization is erroneously applied to the materials in the frame, and not to the inner sensibility of the photographer.
As I discussed earlier, materials play an important role in our mission. We are bound to them, and we remain reliant on corporations to provide us with the tools we need to practice our craft.
However, these tools merely facilitate our communication; they cannot speak for us, but rather we must speak through them. Dan expands on this point— and saying how as artists we should focus on the why of photography rather than the how:. It must be seen. It must be felt. It develops organically over a life-time. The shifts can be so subtle as to be virtually imperceptible and, at times, will come to fruition so rapidly, and with such force, that the profundity is all-consuming. Nothing great in art has ever been created by committee.
Every great artistic advancement was from the strong, singular vision of an individual.
Book Review: “Road to Seeing” by Dan Winters
As a photographer, a good way to stay true to your vision is also to constantly self-evaluate why you make images.
Photographers should be constantly questioning their life-attitudes, and attempting to relate these values with their own images. Dan first starts off by sharing how anonymous internet trolls have changed the landscape of online criticism:. One of the most controversial projects Dan worked on was a portfolio series on Hollywood portraits. This is what Dan had to say about the portfolio series:. However, I believe I accomplished the photographic exercise I set out to do.
Dan Winters talked to William Eggleston about it who is not a stranger to criticism. Eggleston gives him good advice: I knew his work had been met with similar reactions in the past. When I made this portfolio, I did not deviate from the course.
Commenter 2: No passion, no excitement, just some faces of some people…who just happen to be famous. It sickens me to know that once someone gains some bit of fame or notoriety they can shoot total crap and pass it off as inspired work because they have name recognition.
Nothing but ego-driven dribble, both for the sitter and the shooter. Dan expands:. The awkwardness of the image exists only on a single sheet of film. But sometimes the best photographs present themselves in the moments between the moments. While editing the photographs a few days after the session, the picture all but assaulted me, as though it was insisting that it not be overlooked.
Many people have criticized the image as being unflattering and weird. While I do find the moment uncomfortable, I see a truth and beauty in it that affects me every time I view it. I do believe it is important to get honest feedback and critique from close friends, family, and other photographers you respect— but always take their feedback with a grain of salt.
My practical advice: If you hang around other photographers who constantly gossip and talk negativity about others— remove them from your life they are probably also talking negative things about you behind your back. There is a saying: If you are around positive, encouraging, and loving people— they will help uplift your vision and voice as a photographer. However if you surround yourself with negative people, they will simply try to drag you down with them in their black hole of negativity.
I also believe to develop your vision as a photographer is to work on a project you are passionate about, in which you have a certain message you are trying to convey to your viewer. We always borrow our ideas from others. This phenomenon is not unique to music. I have a deep love of the paintings of Francis Bacon and have looked to his work for inspiration many times over the years. Our own unique voices will benefit by examining the paths of other artists, regardless of their chosen medium.
Metzker, and Frederick Sommer, who would top the list. Callahan, for one, was able to produce a large body of work with a powerful, singular voice. He fluidly moved from subject to subject, tailoring his sensibility to each challenge; as a result, he left a legacy that is universal. Frederick Sommer, Ansel Adams, and Edward Weston all used the same equipment, yet their work differs greatly, Once again, the piano is not the sonata.
It is the way you experienced the world before thought was made. This is something within each and every one of us. We have the DNA to prove it. I think that is absolutely rubbish. I think we should try to absorb as much influence and inspiration from the world around us. I think if we constantly surround ourselves with great photography, great photography books, and great photographers— we will elevate ourselves to also become great. Therefore all of our life experiences are unique.
Just focus on creating images that affect your viewer emotionally and challenges them to see the world in a different way. If a certain subject matter, project, or approach interests you— go for it. Who cares if others have done it before. Dan Winters works hard in his photography— and is always trying to push himself to new levels creatively. Dan shares:. Discipline plays a large role, but discipline is more than just repeatedly practicing the same physical process.I guess was just the year lightning struck twice in the same place.
While intent may differ, I would consider these genres to be one and the same. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. I feel that when things work out, they were meant to be, and I live in gratitude for each and every experience that saying yes has provided me.
Or a year-old student, as the case may be. For example, sometimes we might have a plan to shoot for an entire weekend without any interruptions. P reorders are sold out, but I think they intend to be back in stock soon. Though this book appeals to the broader photography audience, it speaks primarily to the student of photography--whether enrolled in school or not--and addresses such topics as creating a visual language; the history of photography; the portfolio; street photography; personal projects; his portraiture work; and the need for key characteristics such as perseverance, awareness, curiosity, and reverence.
I have the ability to be hyper-focused on a single subject and absorb vast amounts of data pertaining to that subject.