Ronald H. Chilcote The Laguna Wilderness

ISBN 13: 9780984000722

The Laguna Wilderness

 
9780984000722: The Laguna Wilderness
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This book is an activist document. The accomplished photography of a sumptuous landscape may obscure the fact that The Laguna Wilderness consists of equal parts of the three most powerful currents of nature photography over the past half century art, political advocacy, and love of nature. Ron Chilcote deploys beauty as a political weapon. The use of photography as a preservationist tool is a tradition deeply rooted in the western United States. The opening of the West arrived in parallel with the emergence of photography. Carleton Watkins s photographs of the Yosemite Valley, for example, are widely credited with influencing Congress and President Lincoln to set it aside in 1864 as inalienable for all time. When Chilcote and his wife first settled in Laguna Beach, California, in 1972, the hills and beaches, canyons and woodlands of the San Joaquin Hills were threatened by rapid population growth and rapacious development. To the battle against these changes Chilcote brought commitment, political involvement, and, eventually, a camera. In this book he pursues the beauty of the Laguna Wilderness not just for his own wonder but as a way of transforming these little-known wild lands into treasured places deserving preservation. The images are gorgeous old-growth oaks in golden light, the still mirror of the Laguna Lakes, autumn mist in the canyons but, more than this, they are intended to change things. Chilcote provides a brief history of the wilderness surrounding Laguna Beach and goes on to tell the inspiring story of the successful local effort to have it set aside as permanent open space. His work at once celebrates the beauty of wildness and serves as an example for people everywhere who see nature vanishing around them and want to do something about it. Chilcote s magnificent images are a faithful reminder of the passion this wonderful land evokes in the many people who worked so hard to save it. The book is a fitting tribute to their perseverance and an accurate record of the years of struggle, hope and ultimate triumph in preserving and protecting the wilderness open space.

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About the Author:

Ron Chilcote is a landscape and nature photographer whose interests emanate from a family tradition in photography, and who has devoted most of his career to teaching and research on the third world. He resides in Laguna Beach, California, and spends his summers in Wyoming, and has published two books on photography, Nature's Laguna Wilderness (2003) and Wind River Wilderness (2006). He is a founder and director of Laguna Wilderness Press, a non-profit whose mission is to depict beautiful photography of pristine wilderness areas and to raise public awareness of the need to conserve them.

Review:

The Laguna Wilderness chronicles the decades-long struggle of a small coastal community to save its surrounding wilderness and celebrates the enduring presence of the hills and canyons of the Laguna Greenbelt. More than just beautiful images, Ron Chilcote s photographs express the deep attachment he feels for the land in what is ultimately a work of love. --Elisabeth Brown, President, Laguna Greenbelt, Inc.

The remarkable story of the preservation of Laguna s wilderness needs to be told. Lida Lenney, a leader and catalyst for saving Laguna Canyon, was beginning a book on this monumental effort before her untimely death. Fortunately, Ron Chilcote has taken on that task, and from this book it is clear why the Laguna Greenbelt inspired such devotion and commitment. --Ann Christoph, former mayor and advocate of open space

Ron Chilcote s skill as a photographer and his passion for this incredible open space resonate with the thousands who helped to preserve it. This wonderful book captures what so many of us love about the South Coast wilderness. --Derek Ostensen, President, Laguna Canyon Foundation

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Ronald H. Chilcote; Ronald H. Chilcote [Editor]
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