Photographer Ansel Adams’s Cars

Cars Culture

He was the father of Landscape photography – an artist whose musicianship almost matched his artistry with the camera. He is one of the founding fathers of a fundamentally American view of the world; But Ansel Adams also loved his cars.

And there’s no contradiction nestling at the heart of this. Like many of us who love the hills, the rivers and the oceans: the aristocratic San Franciscan artist needed a sturdy vehicle to commune with his muse.

Adams spent decades exploring the great outdoors of America. He hiking, explored and documented the beauty of places like Yosemite and Yellowstone; from the soaring walls of El Capitan to the burbling miasma of Old Faithful – but as well as getting out there and getting amongst it, the gentle, bearded totem who created a whole art form used a series of usually large, often spectacular vehicles as platforms to steady his weighty equipment.

From cavernous De Soto limousines to hokey Ford Woodies and latterly Chevy wagons that would now be called SUVs- he always used the sturdy steel of Detroit-wrought Americana to create his art.

A beautifully produced little film (below) details his inspiration, kit and caboodle…




3 Responses to “Photographer Ansel Adams’s Cars”

  1. That is real photography, I used plate camera in my early days not as big as these, 1/2 plates still a chunk of camera & tripod to lug around got to admire the man his pictures are legendary.

  2. Kaiser Henry J III

    I’m certain the Woodie Wagon is a 1940s Pontiac and the truck on the left about is an International Travelall probably from the early 60s.