Archiving Artistry In The Garden
Book Review: In the Garden
Photographs by Stacy Bass
For the past sixteen years, Stacy Bass has shot dozens of breathtaking landscapes and gardens for regional and national magazines.
Her first book, entitled In the Garden, reflects on those years, focusing on many of the images that define her as a landscape photographer, without the usual editorial restrictions on the number of featured pages or pressure from publishing deadlines. The result is an overtly generous archive of lavish spreads, richly detailed close ups and framing that altogether evokes a sense of awe.
Bass re-examines a decade and a half of her landscape and garden portraiture, presenting us with a fresh perspective, chapter by chapter, garden by garden.
Readers are treated to more than 200 shimmering pages, chronicling the very divergent and personal stories of how eighteen exquisite gardens came to be. Styles range from the manicured formality of structured parterres to a rambling meadow of natural grasses.
Suzanne Gannon does a remarkable job capturing the detailed backstories of the gardens based on research and interviews with garden owners, caretakers and landscape designers. Her narratives are written with insight and in a voice that will connect with everyone from amateurs to master gardeners.
Perusing the pages, one cannot help but appreciate again and again, the understated elegance that comes from Bass’s signature technique of shooting in soft, diffused morning light. She states, “Very early on, my technique began to be defined by my decision to shoot at dawn whenever possible...there remains a magic about those precious, fleeting moments as the sun is ready to rise.”
Her intuitive use of light, color and composition places Stacy Bass squarely in the company of landscape photographers Marianne Majerus, Andrea Jones, Andrew Lawson and John M. Hall.
In the Garden represents the personal statement of a photographic artist who has answered a special calling. “On my very first shoot, there was something very precious about wandering alone in a magnificent garden, discovering new and surprising “rooms” and vignettes with every turn and path. It left me transfixed and wanting more.”
That sense of wanting more will no doubt be shared by readers of this insightful and inspiring book.
To buy a copy of In the Garden and attend a book signing visit one of these events listed below:
I am not a professional garden designer, landscape architect or horticulturalist. I am, for the most part, self-taught.
I don’t garden for a living, I live for gardening.
I came to gardening late in life, so I am making up for lost time.
I hope to share my insights, resources, and gardening experiences in the coming months.
My aim is to educate, enlighten and inspire gardeners to take chances, break new ground, dig deeper and stretch themselves.