The Life, Struggles, and Successes of Photographer Ansel Adams
Anthony Ambrosius Aurelius
“Ansel Easton Adams first encountered the awesome beauty of Yosemite Valley (pronounced “yoh-sim-eh-tee”) in California, United States of America during the summer of 1916. This experience had a profound impact upon Adams as he later wrote, “my life has been colored and modulated by the great Earth gesture of the Sierra”, dedicating his life to photography and an attempt to capture the wild majesty of the North American continent and its primitive, natural landscape. Adams believed the world to be a place of beauty and that humanity is part of this larger organism, not separate from nature as it often views itself. In contrast to this, Adams was not a religious person and rejected the idea of formalized religion.
For nearly 70 years, Adams wandered the unoccupied spaces of the American west photographing the views he took in as he traveled along, taking notice of the ever shifting wilderness, ecology which was threatened both indirectly and directly by the various actions of human civilization.
Adams was born in San Francisco, United States of America in the winter of 1902, an only child in a once prosperous family who had fallen upon difficult times. Adams recounts his earliest memory as lying in a pram, as fog flowed east above his family’s home which was nestled above the dunes, beyond the western edge of the city, and overlooking the waters of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Adams was a lonely child, often ill, and prone to fits of uncontrollable crying, filled with a surging and restless energy which caused him to forage out and search for the imagery which made him so incredibly famous within the field of photography. Adams was enrolled in many different schools, often finding it different to remain seated in a desk and chair all day. Adams’ father Charles abandon the idea of his son acquiring a conventional education when he was only 12, arranging for private tuition in algebra and Greek, and allowing Adams to roam for hours in the dunes and cliffs near his home. Adams’ father adored him but could not understand his son as his energy and vivacious spirit was scattered and free flowing.”