Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/03/29

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Re: Luc Delahaye's Camera
From: Guy Bennett <gbennett@lainet.com>
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 08:37:09 -0800
References: <200103290801.AAA10880@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> <200103290801.AAA10880@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us>

>For those who have not seen it, Winterreise is a sad
>comment on the state of photographic publishing - by as
>august an imprint as Phaidon, no less.
>[snip]
>But this huge effort is utterly traduced by being rendered
>consistently split across the spine of a miserable little
>book in trendy full-bleed; the designer/accountant
>responsible should be chained together and sent to Siberia,
>where they can offer the plea of "economic necessity" to
>the court of the indifferent winds, while vast and vulgar
>coffee-table tomes rain down upon them like anti-radar
>chaff from the gaping cloaca of our culture.
>
>Peter Metelerkamp


Ah yes, many a publisher of photographic, and a great many other types of
book, has succombed to a trendy, overly designed layout intended, I
suppose, to attract the eye of the potential buyer and unfortunately not to
present the material in the best possible way to the eye of the potential
reader/viewer.

The Delahaye book, with its full bleed, two page photographic spreads is
one example of this trend in publishing. Another is the otherwise wonderful
"Italiani" by Leica photographer Gianni Berengo Gardin. The book, published
by teNeues features nearly 500 b&w photos by the well known Italian pj.
Though no photo is spread over two pages, most all of them are horizontal
shots, and are printed full bleed on their side to fit the vertical format
of the book. So not only do you have to hold the book at 90 in order to be
able to see the photos correctly (which is unweildy and uncomfortable),
since most of the images bleed into the gutter of the book, you are forced
to crack the spine (and thus potentially have the pages fall out) in order
to see the whole image!

I don't know that I'd send the publisher and designer to Siberia - they
just might show up in Delahaye's next book!

Guy