Beautiful Whale

Beautiful Whale

Book - 2013
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Photographer and conservationist Bryant Austin had long searched for an impactful way to inspire change in whaling nations. For many years, he searched for a way to photograph whales in the wild that would capture their awe inspiring beauty, grace and intelligence. A chance encounter with a humpback calf and mother finally opened Austin's eyes and helped him to develop a novel way of producing high resolution, life size photography of these astounding creatures. Spending weeks with groups of whales off Tonga, Dominica, and the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, Austin immerses himself in the water for many hours each day, waiting patiently for whales to approach him. He remains motionless, allowing humpback, sperm and minke whales that are sometimes 100 feet in length and weigh as much as 55 tons to come within ten feet of him. This allows him to create detailed, intimate portraits of his subjects. Austin's first book, Beautiful Whale presents remarkable close ups of whales, including a special focus on their eyes, as well as full body portraits created by compiling hundreds of images. The book includes a foreword by oceanographer Dr. Sylvia Earle.
Publisher: New York : Abrams, [2013]
ISBN: 9781419703843
Branch Call Number: 778.73 AUS
Characteristics: 144 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 32 x 39 cm

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Cdnbookworm Jun 12, 2013

This book contains amazing photographs of whales. Humpback whales in Tonga. Sperm whales in the Caribbean. Dwarf minke whales at the Great Barrier Reef. Following a close encounter with a whale Austin was driven to pursue the goal of taking life-size composite portraits of whales. So very few humans get to have an encounter with a whale that we don't get to see their beauty and intelligence and thus disregard how our actions affect their environment. To take these photographs Austin has to be very close to the whales, remaining as still as possible while they slowly moved past him. As he describes his experiences, you realize the gentleness and curiosity of these large creatures.
Austin sold his vehicles, house, and camera equipment to finance this project when fund-raising didn't provide enough. The exhibitions he was able to mount drew responses better than he had hoped and brought increased attention to these little known animals.

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