"Zoological eye candy captured with a keen eye and adventurous spirit."– Kirkus Reviews
An impressive coffee-table book brimming with a couple’s beautiful photographs of exotic wildlife.
The Lynns, a husband-and-wife team, have traveled the world indulging their loves of wildlife, adventure, and photography. Although they began taking pictures some decades ago, most of the work in this book, their debut, was done over the last decade, in their retirement. They traveled to all seven continents, sometimes suffering in the bush, uncomplaining. The photography—sometimes spectacular, always enjoyable—is solid work featuring almost every animal imaginable, always in its natural habitat. There are the usual suspects—lions, tigers, bears, elephants, whales, gorillas, as well as lemurs, anteaters, macaws, all sorts of wading and fishing birds, butterflies, and frogs. There’s also the elusive tamandua and the confounding fauna the Lynns found Down Under, including echidnas, which seem straight out of a Dr. Seuss book. (A proficient index serves as a helpful tour guide.) Interesting factoids abound; for instance, did you know hippos kill more people in Africa than any other beast? The casual, engaging text invites readers in, though the title is somewhat misleading, since the commentary is gently humorous but hardly sarcastic: “The common moorhead is a cousin of the purple gallinule. I am not sure how birds even become cousins.” Production values are impressively high: the hardback book is printed on heavy stock, and the colorful photographs burst with detail. The Lynns prove to be wonderful guides, primarily because every page so clearly shares their enthusiasm. Readers might start plotting their own picture-taking adventures. You’ll need more than an iPhone, though.
Zoological eye candy captured with a keen eye and adventurous spirit.
Not all of the animals but a large sampling of the world’s species remains on colorful display in this photo book.
The Lynns (The Sarcastic Lens, 2014), a husband-and-wife photographic and writing team, present the haul from some three decades of trotting the globe and taking pictures of animals. The results run the gamut, from minute leafcutter ants to a gigantic blue whale; from an eye-popping peacock to a warthog that seems almost as exhibitionistic in its ugliness; from the brilliant red of the Andean cock-of-the-rock to the dull matted brown of the hyena; from polar bears to Antarctic penguins; from coyotes savagely devouring an elk carcass to tender leopard-on-leopard licking. Certain commonalities emerge from the profusion of fascinating particularities, one being the profound ennui that pervades the life of an animal. Cheetahs, lions, pumas, jaguars, great white sharks, Tasmanian devils, alligators, and hippopotamuses are forever lounging about, gazing listlessly at the camera or yawning wide in a sign of either persistent boredom or a (justified) pride in their fangs. Richard avers that he had to spend two hours watching a three-toed sloth before it finally moved enough to reveal its face. Other beasts are more industrious, particularly the birds, which are forever flitting about flowers, biting fish, or regurgitating food to their chicks. Mainly the dazzling book offers a series of beguiling character studies: flamingos, pacing like ballet dancers in pink-and-white tutus above long legs; a giraffe splayed awkwardly to lower its head to the water; a fiddler crab defying the world with its swollen claw; bison standing immovably beneath a coat of snow; blue-footed boobies kissing with their awkward long bills; a gray langur monkey, its velvety black face framed by a white ruff, peering out with a look of searching reflection. The Lynns’ photography is crisp and vibrant with color and captures animals with an absorbing immediacy.
A fine coffee-table volume of natural portraiture.