Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Andrew Zuckerman's Wisdom: 50 Unique and Original Portraits not only contains beautiful portraiture, but is packaged together with a 60 minutes of the portrait subjects discussing the meaning of wisdom. At wisdombook.org there's video excerpts from the interviews, plus 'making of' footage and commentary, and even has portraits of all the subjects. The book, however, has large, beautifully printed pages of these portraits, plus other images of each portrait subject, along with text, wisdom, from each person photographed. It is a beautiful book, and is on my wish list.

From a photographers standpoint, I found it fun and instructive to watch the Making Of: How It Was Made video (click link in upper left when you get to the site). Catching glimpses of the photographer at work, seeing his use of light, and seeing a bit of how he works with his subjects, all good stuff.

A few favorite quotes from the interviews:

"One of the reasons I haven't slipped into some sort of retirement is I always feel I'm learning something new all the time." - Clint Eastwood

"I always thought that inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work." - Chuck Close

"I don't know if political change can affect that much. Change has to be in the heart." -Kris Kristofferson

It's fascinating to see in so many of the commentaries on wisdom, how frequently the comments stem from the professional experiences of those who are being interviewed. Maybe that's obvious, but, there is something about it that I can't yet put my finger on... I just found it fascinating, one person of one background juxtaposed with one of another.

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