Cristina Mittermeier – Woman Of Influence On B&H


B&H celebrates International Women’s Day with its Women of Influence series.
Cristina Mittermeier is an accomplished conservationist, wildlife photographer, and author, who has dedicated her life to education and outreach through the stories reflected in her photos. In this episode, Cristina shares her message of conservationism, an appreciation for natural splendor, and the relationship humans have with the wild.
Find out more about Cristina Mittermeier here.
View more Photographer’s Videos here.

The Top 20 Photography Books That Influenced Me

Influential Books of John Paul Caponigro

“Enjoy this collection of photographic books that have influenced me during some of my most formative years.

 

Megaliths by Paul Caponigro

#1

Paul Caponigro – Megaliths

Watching the production of this project from start to finish had a profound effect on me. The book was the culmination of decades of work on so many levels.

Alfred Stieglitz

#2

Alfred Stieglitz – Portrait Of Georgia O’Keefe

These portraits and nudes set the highest standards for me. Deep complex emotional connection. The variety of Stieglitz’ printing was eye opening. Meeting O’Keefe was interesting; I still wonder what it was like for her as an older woman to produce a book on her younger self.

Eliot Porter's Nature's Chaos

#3

Eliot Porter – Nature’s Chaos

Fortunate to see my mother design many of Porter’s books, this one confirmed my feeling that he saw a deeper order in nature before we more fully understood complexity in the sciences.

Christopher Burkett's Intimations Of Paradise

#4

Christopher Burkett – Intimations Of Paradise

Formerly a Gnostic monk, Burkett renounced his vows of poverty so that he could afford film and continue to faithfully transcribe The Book Of Nature. There are so many ways to live life in a sacred way

Dune / Edward Weston And Brett Weston

#5

Edward & Brett Weston – Dune

Dune / Edward Weston And Brett Weston collects works, many never before printed, by father and son showing how similar and how different each artist’s vision was. Working with Kurt Markus to produce this book was eye-opening.

Ansel Adams / The Making Of 40 Photographs

#6

Ansel Adams – The Making Of 40 Photographs

It’s wonderful to read how an artist works and even better to see them in action; I was lucky to do both. I do wish Adams wrote more about why he made each image and what it meant to him.

Jerry Uelsmann's Process & Perception

#7

Jerry Uelsmann – Process & Perception

It demonstrates how process changes perception – and the process you engage is a personal choice. The inside is just as important as the outside.

Edward Burtynsky's Manufactured Landscapes

#7

Edward Burtynsky – Manufactured Landscapes

While Eliot Porter didn’t want to beautify trash through art Burtynsky turns an unflinching eye towards industrial impacts on land crafting a complex statement on land use and ultimately identity.

Minor White Manifestations Of The Spirit

#8

Minor White – Manifestations Of The Spirit

No other photographer is as articulate about the inner experience of making art. His essay in equivalence is seminal.

Wynn Bullock's Revelations

#9

Wynn Bullock – Revelations

Bullock’s marriage of science/physics and art
became as much a philosophical statement as a celebration of beauty.

Kenro Izu's Sacred Places

#10

Kenro Izu – Sacred Places

Izu tries to photograph the spirit of ancient sacred places. When he talks about atmosphere he means more than weather.

Chris Rainier's Keepers Of The Spirit

#11

Chris Rainier – Keepers Of The Spirit

If Edward Curtis met Joseph Campbell you’d get Rainier’s survey of spirituality in world cultures.

Sebastiao Salgado's An Uncertain Grace

#12

Sebastiao Salgado – An Uncertain Grace

Salgado sets the bar high by bringing out the dignity within his subjects no matter how undignified their circumstances.

oyce Tenneson's Transformations

#13

Joyce Tenneson – Transformations

Tenneson’s images remind me of what Pierre Teilhard de Chardin said, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.”

Arnold Newman's One Mind's Eye

#14

Arnold Newman – One Mind’s Eye

Beautifully constructed portraits from the father of environmental portraiture.

Harry Callahan

#15

Harry Callahan

The rest of his wrestlessly inventive work intrigued me but his deeply honest extended portrait of his wife set a standard I hope for in all others.

Sugimoto

#16

Sugimoto

It’s minimalism that isnt shallow or evasive; the collection reinforces the concept, creating a context for itself. It asks so many questions? Enough? Not enough? Do all the world’s oceans look the same? Or is it just one ocean? Is it the camera or the artist who makes them look the same? Is it the way we look? How is it that by looking at them long enough I begin to see myself?

 Richard Misrach's The Sky Book

#17

Richard Misrach – The Sky Book

Pleasant as it is this minimalism ordinarily wouldn’t be enough for me. But then he adds the titles of time and places in many languages with a history. Together they grow stronger and placed within his life work as one of many Desert Cantos they grow stringer still. Rebecca Solnit’s accompanying essay is excellent. I learned a lot from looking at this – about art and myself.

Witkin

#18

Witkin

I find Joel Peter Witkin’s work profoundly challenging. I can’t say I love it; I can’t say I hate it. I can say it continually crosses back and forth between self-indulgently expressing his individual perversions and courageously looking unflinchingly into a universal heart of darkness.

Michael Kenna's Night Work

#19

Michael Kenna – Night Work

Kenna’s elegant minimalism is laced with a quiet spirituality that comes less from tradition and more from being in the moment, growing most emotional when he’s in the dark.

Huntington Witherill's Orchestrating Icons

#20

Huntington Witherill – Orchestrating Icons

It’s musical for its flowing compositions and exquisite tonalities. Extraordinary separation in extreme highlights and shadows, no one prints quite like him in.

 

Find out more about my influences here.

22 Great Quotes By Duane Michals

 
Enjoy this collection of quotes by photographer Duane Michals.
“Trust that little voice in your head that says ‘Wouldn’t it be interesting if…’; And then do it.” – Duane Michals
“Don’t try to be an artist. Find the thing within you that needs to be expressed. You might find it is art.” – Duane Michals
“I am an expressionist and by that I mean that I’m not a photographer or a writer or a painter or a tap dancer, but rather someone who expresses himself according to his needs.” – Duane Michals
“People believe in the reality of photographs, but not in the reality of paintings. That gives photographers an enormous advantage. Unfortunately, photographers also believe in the reality of photographs.” – Duane Michals
“Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be.” – Duane Michals
“I never photograph sunsets and I never photograph moonrises. I’m not interested in what things look like.” – Duane Michals
“You can never capture a person in picture, never. You might get an interesting expression or gesture. I almost never research a picture subject ahead of time. I think Karsh is full of baloney. Can you imagine spending a whole week out in La Jolla with Jonas Salk soaking up his ambiance, then wind up making him look as if he’s in the studio in Ottawa with his thumb under his chin?” – Duane Michals
“Because of my involvement with my photographs, it is difficult for me really to see them objectively. Talking about them is like talking about myself. The only real idea that I have about them is that they are essentially snapshots. For snapshots, I feel, often have an inherent simplicity and directness that I find beautiful. The roots of my photographs are in this tradition.” – Duane Michals
“However, I think that the photographer must completely control his picture and bring to it all his personality, and in this area most photographs never transcend being just snapshots. When a great photographer does infuse the snapshot with his personality and vision, it can be transformed into something truly moving and beautiful.” – Duane Michals
“The best part of us is not what we see, it’s what we feel. We are what we feel. We are not what we look at . . .. We’re not our eyeballs, we’re our mind. People believe their eyeballs and they’re totally wrong . . .. That’s why I consider most photographs extremely boring–just like Muzak, inoffensive, charming, another waterfall, another sunset. This time, colors have been added to protect the innocent. It’s just boring. But that whole arena of one’s experience–grief, loneliness–how do you photograph lust? I mean, how do you deal with these things? This is what you are, not what you see. It’s all sitting up here. I could do all my work sitting in my room. I don’t have to go anywhere.” – Duane Michals
“I write in order to express what the photo itself cannot say. A photograph of my father doesn’t tell me what I thought of him, which for me is much more important than what the man looked like.” – Duane Michals
“Photography does deal with ‘truth’ or a kind of superficial reality better than any of the other arts, but it never questions the nature of reality – it simply reproduces reality. And what good is that when the things of real value in life are invisible?” – Duane Michals
“I believe in the invisible. I do not believe in the definitive reality of things around us. For me, reality is the intuition and the imagination and the quiet voice inside my head that says: isn’t that extraordinary? The things in our lives are the shadows of reality, just as we ourselves are shadows.” – Duane Michals
“Photographers tend not to photograph what they can’t see, which is the very reason one should try to attempt it. Otherwise we’re going to go on forever just photographing more faces and more rooms and more places. Photography has to transcend description. It has to go beyond description to bring insight into the subject, or reveal the subject, not as it looks, but how does it feel?” – Duane Michals
“I believe in the imagination. What I cannot see is infinitely more important than what I can see.” – Duane Michals
“Photography is essentially an act of recognition by street photographers, not an act of invention. Photographers might respond to an old man’s face, or an Arbus freak, or the way light hits a building—and then they move on. Whereas in all the other art forms, take William Blake, everything that came to that paper never existed before. It’s the idea of alchemy, of making something from nothing.” – Duane Michals
“I use photography to help me explain my experiences to myself.” – Duane Michals
“I think photographs should be provocative and not tell you what you already know. It takes no great powers or magic to reproduce somebody’s face in a photograph. The magic is in seeing people in new ways.” – Duane Michals
Duane Michals
“I am a reflection photographing other reflections within a reflection. To photograph reality is to photograph nothing.” – Duane Michals
“All good work has magic in it, and addresses the mind in a subtle way.” – Duane Michals
“Art is really whispering, not shouting.” – Duane Michals
“My gift to you is that I am different.” – Duane Michals
View 12 Great Photographs By Duane Michals.
Watch Duane Michals talk about his art.