Impressions of Light Book Review

Impressions of Light

Photographs by William Neill

Impressions of Light was published in 2008 in book form. I found it recently as an eBook from William’s website and bought it.

The ebook comes as two PDFs, one that preserves the spread design of the paper book, the other as individual pages. It is the latter that is easier to use when reading electronically, but it is great having both so you can see how the book was designed, since I do not have a print copy.

Impressions of Light covers the photographer’s experimentation with long exposure and movement in photographing the landscape, nature and water. He uses this to abstract his subject, reducing it to its elemental parts and, by removing the detail that grabs your attention, allowing you to concentrate on the feeling and emotion.

The book is immensely successful. The images are stunning, William showing a real feel for this approach and a mastery of his technique. There is an amazing calm and Zen-like quality to the book, despite the obvious amount of movement employed. The individual images are beautiful and transcendental, truly taking you into the sublime that is nature and the landscape. something those of you who shoot the landscape will know.

The PDF is 85 pages long, in the individual page version, and each is a gem. The book is divided into four image sections: forest, flora, landscape and water. There is an opening essay by William and a section of photographic information at the end.

My only criticism of the book is a small one. The last section, Water, is mainly beach and ocean images, but the last four are lake images and are jarringly different when you flip the page and land straight on them. I think the appearance might have worked better with the water section broken into Ocean and Lake sections, so the transition was less sudden. Apart from that I think the book is well designed and the images both well chosen and sequenced.

William sells the book and ebook from his website. The paper book sells for US$150, while the electronic book version is a bargain at US$15. At the time of writing it was selling at US$10 and at this it is a must buy for anyone into photography. Very highly recommended. Do both yourself and your photography a favour and buy yourself a copy.


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