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Monday, January 25, 2016

Ghosts: Images of War by Carrie Zeidman

I need to kick off my latest review with a little background. My daughter is in a 4 and 1 program to get her master's degree in graphic design. She's Adobe Photoshop certified. I grew up going from art museum to art museum with my parents. Ansel Adams is a master I've always appreciated. I say this because when it comes to photography that's what I'm used to. My daughter's college expects perfection, so I'm used to flawless images shaped with Lightroom and Photoshop.

Carrie Zeidman is an award-winning artist (Cupertino's 2012 Distinguished Artist of the Year) whose Ghosts: Images of War blends past and present. A brief history of the time is shown with real photos of the time. Then there are images she's taken and tweaked to add the ghostly images of soldiers, men, and woman from the different eras. I loved the idea of it. Blending past and present seemed unique and definitely something reminiscent to me of music video duets with modern day artists and those who have passed on, i.e. the recently deceased Natalie Cole and her father Nat King Cole.

This is where the review gets tricky. I loved the idea, the narrative fit perfectly, but the photography often came off as hit or miss with me. There's a "Beaches of Normandy" shot that blends the woman in the blue jacket with the ghostly images of soldiers perfectly. Then, there are others like "Union Soldiers at the Surrender of General Lee, Appomattox Courthouse" where the modern day man came off looking like he'd been cropped into the picture to me. It wasn't as seamless a transition and distracted me from the rest of the picture.

In the end, I can't say this book was a hit with me. That doesn't mean it won't be with you, but it just didn't grab me as I hoped.

Amazon is one retailer selling Ghosts: Images of War. Published in January 2016 by Swiss Creek Publications, this photographic journal of sorts may appeal to history buffs and budding photographers.

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