12 Significant Photographs

I’d love to share the philosophy of one of my favourite photographers, Ansel Adams.  Well known for his stunning black and white landscapes, we all ooh and ahh over them!

But….  the creative genius that fuelled the fires for their creation…. what about that, where did it come from, what sparks lit the fire?


macro flower Photography, debi riley art, Ansel Adams quotes,
lily and iris macro debiriley.com




There are 2 quotes that give me a wealth of insight into Ansel Adams’  motivations and inspirations.

First Ansel Adams Photography quote


“12 Significant photographs

in any one year is a good crop.”   


An eye opening statement.  I’m astounded.

That concept hits me right where it counts.

The MASTER of photography….. considered 12,  to be a good crop!   Per Year.



And here I have been ‘slaving’ and struggling away (like many) to  get nearly every single effort to be ‘significant.’    Ahhh.       Of course, I am no Ansel Adams!  But still.  The philosophy behind this is valid.


And valid in painting as well as in photography.




Second Ansel Adams quote


“A photograph is usually looked at – 

seldom looked into.”       



macro lily stamens, soft focus, debi riley art photography
Green Giants  debiriley.com


Now,  Adams  digs a bit deeper.   Into content, context, meaning, message, communication.   The dialogue between the subject, the photographer and the viewer.


What meaning is behind the image?   What feelings are evoked?          Do we briefly cast a glance in the mirror and then scurry past?

Or pause,  and really take a moment to look into it for the full meaning to be revealed?



Ansel Adams created some of the most beautiful photographic images I’ve seen.  I’m sure its because he took the time to look into the subject until,  what was needed to be revealed,  was.




Today’s Creations  –    full of challenges

This morning,  I set out to replenish my library.  I was thinking about closed and opened doors and windows, the opportunities to try new techniques.  To learn something from a circumstance.

Now,  I haven’t used a tripod.  Shock.

(My hands used to be so steady, I never bothered.)



Trying out my unused tripod would be a fabulous opportunity to learn a new skill.

This is a ‘door to enter and walk through.’     Conveying this  message in the photos, would be another goal.

I’d like the viewers’  to Look Into the photographs rather than look at…. hmmm.  That is another challenge.



I had on hand, some flowers in a vase.

Lilies and Iris.  They were my subjects. I wondered if I could…. achieve any… of my goals.




lily stamen macro photography, ansel adams inspiration quote, debi riley art
The Curtain Parts….  macro debiriley.com





Ansel Adams and his words of wisdom have inspired me.

I hope they have inspired you, whether you are painting, writing, baking, singing, printing, photographing, or some other creative art form.


At the end of 2016,  if by chance…. I have created 12 Significant Photographs or artworks,  I will give myself an encouraging,  pat on the back!


lily macro photography with tripod, debi riley art photography, ansel adams quotes, debiriley.com
Lily at Home  debiriley.com





    • hi Adele, I’ve rechecked these with a couple people and their computers are reading the quotes. mine does as well when I logout.
      I’m going to continue to try to see what might be amiss!
      Thank you for the alert, I appreciate your comment on the post and how readers are enjoying it! cheers, Debi


  1. ‘The Curtain Parts’ is my favorite but also love ‘Green Giants’. Your photography is always captivating, worth more than a glance at anytime. I enjoyed the Adams quotes too and my next thought: wouldn’t it be cool to abstract one or more of these photos? Thanks for sharing 3d!! 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    • thank you (Sharon) for such kindness! I do want to improve my photograph skills (ok… computer/digital/etc) so, practice makes ‘better’! there will loads of rubbish along the way but thats part of the journey too.
      Hope you had a Lovely day for your Birthday, Sharon 🙂


  2. I’m sure if Anselm Adams would live today he would maybe change his opinion, but in non digital camera times, material was expensive and you wouldn’t waste too much. I just looked at some of his photos, they are really stunning. I think black and white is even more difficult than color. These photos are real compositions and beautiful. Understatement is always good, dear Debi. The old Japanese painters were exercising 60 years to paint a flower in a few minutes. It looked very easy but it was 60 years of exercise before. Your photos are wonderful, too. Cheers Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great quotes from one of the greats although I have to say your quotes, i.e. quotes from Debi Riley, will also stand the test of time and are having just as great an impact on so many of us that follow you. Have a great and creative weekend 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. 12 significant photos is a very tall order. Most of us achieve good or maybe very good but a significant photo that’s a game changer. Most people don’t achieve that in a lifetime or career, let along a year. If you do that, I’ll pat you on the back! 😀 Love the idea of looking into a photo. Going to keep that in the back of my mind. Love “The Curtain Parts….” image.

    Liked by 1 person

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