This spectacular visual journey captures some of the most stunning photographs—portraits, animals, landscapes, seascapes, nature, etc.—from National Geographic’s renowned image collection. Award-winning photographer Annie Griffiths culled the images to reflect the many variations on the universal theme of beauty. Now in mini-format, chapters are organized around the aesthetic concepts that create beauty in a photograph: Light, Composition, Moment (Gesture and Emotion), Motion, Palette, and Wonder.
Beyond the introduction and brief essays about each featured concept, the text is light. The photographs speak for themselves, enhanced by lyrical quotes from scholars and poets. In the chapter on Light, for example, we read these words of whimsical wisdom from songwriter Leonard Cohen: “Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That's how the lights get in.” And then the images flow, of light entering scenes through windows, clouds, and spotlights, from above, alongside, and behind, casting radiance upon young ballerinas and weathered men, into groves of autumn trees and island-dotted seas, revealing everything it touches to be beautiful beyond expectation.