At the Pulse of Life
About Nature and
120 pages, 120 color
photographs, brochure, stitch-binding, text in German and English,
Euro 19,80 or US-Dollar 22,80. 21,5 x 22 cm, ISBN
Kilda Publisher, D-48268 Greven, Germany
You can order
Pulse of Life
Natural History Book
Service, Totnes, UK
NHBS Mailorder Bookstore
At the Pulse
of Life, Fritz Polking. The incredible images in
this book will blow most anyone away. The
collection reflects a lifetime of hard work and dedication to
craft matched by few if any contemporary nature photographers.
Fritz writes about each image (the text appears in both
German and English) in an engaging style and if you have ever
met him, you can actually detect the glint in his eyes while
reading his words. The text is so personal that you will
feel as if you were there right beside him as he created each
image. The chosen images show nature as reality, many feature
life and death struggles while others convey feelings of
tenderness, love, and affection. To choose a single
image as a favorite would prove a hopeless chore for most
folks... Many of the African photos are especially
powerful as are those in the Osprey section, but you will find
a gem or two with just about every turn of the page.
This, his 24th book, may be the best by far.
Morris, Birds As Art, Bulletin #131, March 2004.
and Finalists in this year's IPPY Awards,
plus the Ten Outstanding books of the Year
Independent Publisher Book Awards attracted
books from over 1,500 publishers around the world;
from all 50 u.s. states, nine Canadian provinces,
and 18 foreign countries. The ninth annual, 2005 Awards
saw a continued increase in quality and diversity -
and the writing and publishing exhibited great passion.
Yes, independent authors and publishers are passionate
about getting their message out, and they are changing
the world, one book at a time...
and congratulations to all participants for your
truly great work!
Awards Final Results Announcement.txt winners and
Finalists by category:
voice within: The Lake superior Nudes
(Blacklock Photography Studios)
Joel Sternfeld: American Prospects (D.A.P.);
At the Pulse of Life:
About Nature and Photography (Kilda-Verlag)
2005 to honor the award recipients.
About the Awards:
"IPPY" Awards were conceived in 1996 as a
unaffiliated awards program open to all members of the
independent publishing industry.
awards are intended to bring increased recognition to
the thousands of exemplary independent, university, and
self-published titles produced each year, and reward those
who exhibit the courage, innovation, and creativity to bring
about change in the world of publishing.
Independent Publisher Book Awards attracted
2,175 books from over 1,500 publishers around the world;
from all 50 u.s. states, nine canadian provinces, and
18 foreign countries. The 2005 Awards saw a continued
increase in quality and diversity - entrants come in
all sizes and from all walks of life.
in each category receive trophies, two finalists
receive certificates, and 5-12 semi-finalists per category
receive honorable mention. A cash prize of $500 goes to each
of ten outstanding Books of the Year, in cate~ories like
"Story Teller of the Year" and "Most Likely
to save the Planet.
A gala awards celebration will be held in
Pulse of Life
Fritz Pölking has
a lifetime of award-winning photographic experience to draw on
for this, his 24th book, which is packed to bursting with
stunning, natural images taken all over the world.
He has an eye for
the characterful encounter with wildlife, and many of the photos
here give the viewer up-close contact with creatures such as
lions, bald eagles, bat-eared foxes and even a wild snow leopard
He has captured
plenty of exciting animal behavior, too, and his landscapes fair
take the breath away.
captions (German and English) share the stories behind the shots
and reveal a self-deprecating wit and a quirky philosophy of
life and photographic endeavour.
he tells us, 'is not easy, even though they are sitting,
clinging motionless, tightly to the rocks. Only the
non-photogenic are found easily... Naturaly, the pretty ones are
always very far out.' Alix Lee
and Mary Ann McDonald's
of the Month
must-have book --
the Pulse of Life
Fritz Polking, is familiar to any wildlife
photographer who bothers to read photo credit
by-lines. Fritz is a past winner of the BBC's
Wildlife Photographer of the Year award, as well as
being a three-time winner of Germany's GDT Nature
Photographer of the Year award. Fritz is a German
photographer whose work regularly appears in US, as
well as world-wide, wildlife and nature magazines,
and Mary and I are lucky to be able to call Fritz a
published a visually stunning photography book that
features some of his most outstanding work -- images
that many of you have undoubtedly seen in past
publications. There are so many images that I've
admired over the years, and that I've hoped to shoot
when I've been in the same places. Included in that
bunch of images to emulate is a shot of a Galapagos
hawk about to perch on the shell of a Galapagos
tortoise, and a tussock bird about to feed from a
giant Elephant seal. Believe me, when I was in both
locations -- the Galapagos, and the Falklands, I
tried to shoot similar images!
I'm not a fan
or advocate of copying another's work -- the 'put
the tripod in these holes' syndrome, but I certainly
admire great images and I'm motivated to shoot
images that are similiar. Rarely does one get the
chance to do so, but images like those that Fritz
has made certainly compel one to go to the same
areas, look for similar opportunities, and,
ultimately I hope, come away with shots that have
one's own unique brand or mark about them.
recorded some truly amazing images, including shots
of an African rock python swallowing a gazelle, a
Nile Crocodile swallowing a gazelle, and a cheetah
about to tackle a gazelle. Sounds like either Fritz
or I have something against gazelles, doesn't it? My
point in mentioning these three images is this --
Mary and I spend a huge amount of time in Africa and
I've yet to see a python with prey, and I've never
had a chance to film a croc catching or in the act
of swallowing a gazelle, and we've had few chances
to do well with cheetahs chasing prey as well. So, I
can really admire the work and time and talent that
went into those images!
This is a book
of photos, not a how-to book on photography. The
text is especially refreshing, as it is a series of
nature lessons and anecdotes about Fritz's shooting.
For example, Fritz is one of less than one half
dozen photographers to film a wild snow leopard, and
his short story of those images are revealing -- he
made to trips to Mongolia to get the shots, only
succeeding by traveling to Mongolia in winter -- an
incredibly tough place to be at any time, let alone
the book and you'll be inspired by it. I've always
been inspired by Fritz's work, and in seeing this
incredible collection, I've been humbled as well.
It's simply great. The ISBN for the book is ISBN
3-88949-201-0, the publisher is Kilda-Verlag at
www.kildaverlag.com, or you can get more information,
and more photo tips, directly from Fritz's web site
"At the Pulse of Life" shows moments
within nature that, of all forms of art, can only be captured by nature
photography in this specific way.
Only nature photography can show the spectacular
reality that nature holds; for example, the essence of movement This
turns it into something unique and unmistakable The following pages will
show you iust such moments out of nature exciting, beautiful, humorous,
informative and dramatic
Nature lives for the moment The past will only
apply as far as having been formed and changed by her. Life within
nature is the here and now and that is the reason why she is suited far
better then hardly anything else to be captured by the medium of
The nature photographer as journalist with a
camera is able to do this quickly, correctly, in detail and organized
We need photos like these in order to have a
fitting picture of life within reality. They show us just what a grand
spectacle life really is and - that everything in life repeats itself.
These pictures show a part of every-day-Iife that does not produce news
coverage. That is why there are photographs of nature which please,
surprise or shock us, because they are an important regulater for the
"manipulated picture and mutilated truth" that we are often
These pictures evoke the real world and in context
with the writings and additional photographic miniatures that encircle
the subject, show the pulse of life in its - fascinating - action, and
they confirm what has been suspected, feit and discovered throughout the
course of the years: it remains difficult and - just like nature
herself - it is a gift to photography
Painting, music and literature can express many
things better than photography, but as a portrayer of the moment the
here and now of nature, photography is unbeatable.
From page 116:
Which famous picture would you
have liked to have taken?
The penguins on a blue colored ice
berg by Cherry Alexander
Which talent are you lacking?
Patience - unless I am waiting in
front of my subject, that is when I do have it.
What is the secret to your
There are four: unwavering
diligence and self-criticism, selfcriticism, self-criticism.
Sometimes you are confronted with
envy and malevolence, but l think that happens to everyone who is
successful. I personally like to work together with other nature
photographers. I have already done 3 books with colleagues and in our
club of nature photographers " blende4.com" we work on
projects together with pleasure and often take pictures of the same
subject at the same time.
Which great photographic feats
do you admire the most?
The wildlife pictures of Jonathan Scott, the
close-ups from John Shaw, the landscapes by Art Wolfe and the photo
stories from Frans Lanting.
What will the future
The nature photographers will try
to tell more stories with their pictures. In my opinion.
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