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Ansel Adams

            Ansel Adams was born into a wealthy family in San Francisco in 1902. He was first trained as a boy to be a concert pianist and pursued this career for much of his life. He became interested in photography in 1916 when his family went on a vacation to Yosemite National Park. He had a brownie box camera, recently invented by George Eastman, making it possible for amateur photographers to fill a roll of film, then send the camera in and have their film developed and the camera reloaded. This started a life long journey. After he became more and more serious about his photography, he began mingling with other photographers and developed his own style. His work began to develop a sharp focus that became his trademark. He developed a system of developing his pictures called "the zone system". In the zone system , he used a method in which he would divide the print into ten different zones with different gradations of light, going from black to white. This way, he could see how long to expose a negative to a print to achieve maximum contrast. "The zone system relied on what Adams referred to as "previsualization". Before releasing the shutter of his camera, Adams always developed a vision in his mind of how the final photograph would appear" (AnselWashington28). From these methods, he founded the f64 club. "Even though the f64 group met only a few times and had only three exhibitions, it affected a turning point in the history of photography, proclaiming that photography was a new American fine art form("Environment"28). The club was dedicated to making prints of clear focus and wide depth of field, creating clear crisp photographs. Ansel abandoned his former aspirations in the music scene, and pursued his new passion, photography. He moved to Yosemite for a period of time in "37 and then to Carmel ca. "He spent much of his life photographing in the national parks, and served as an official photographer for the Sierra Club, a conservation organization.

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