Re: Re: Lesson 2: Assignment;Assignment Title: Inspiration

Duncan Rawlinson


Hey Ashtam!

Thanks for submitting another assignment to the Icon Photography School. I trust that everything is going well. If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions please send a note to

You have indeed chosen one of the greatest photographers of all time: Ansel Adams His work is some of the most famous and beautiful in all of photography. Ansel Adams was a technical master and he loved precision. The breadth and depth of work is remarkable. He is such a famous photographer that almost every photographer out there either wants to be Ansel Adams or they secretly want to be Ansel Adams.

Perhaps one of the most astonishing aspects of his photography is his simplicity. His images appear to be quite elegant and simple and yet they are technically complex. One can only dream of being the next Ansel Adams in photography but the reality is that there will never be another photographer like him. All we can do is learn from what he left behind. His masterpieces.

His works are almost an education in photography in and of themselves. His compositions are pure perfection. Study them, learn from them!!

If you love the natural world and want to get serious about your nature photography you need to put in the work. You need to be prepared to hike out into the wilderness and stay there in all conditions. In fact many of the best images come from bad weather. You need to sacrifice a great deal to make images of stunning beauty like this. Most are not prepared to make these sacrifices or are too lazy to achieve such things (myself included).

You pose an interesting question in your piece about the irony of shining the light of photography on a subject. This is an ongoing issue with photography. How does one present their images to the world? Should the pristine and fragile environments we love be shared? In my own personal experience I have kept some treasures to myself in order to avoid sharing these pristine places with the world for fear that others would discover them. From a technical perspective one way to hide the location is to remove the GPS coordinates from the EXIF data on your image and not share the name of the place.

Of course you and I toil in obscurity but you never know, you, or I, could be the next great photographer!

The main thing to glean from this is that you have an appreciation for nature photography and that’s probably what you should focus on.

Nice job here.

See you on the next assignment.