Life in Color is arranged by color in a rainbow of beauty. Each chapter, devoted to a color, begins with a short, inspiring essay that explores the qualities, meaning, and symbolism of that color, written in the same warm and lovely voice that guided the reader through Visions of Earth. Color chapters include photographs that are predominantly blue, orange, green, yellow, purple, and red. Smaller sections present images in silver, brown, black, gold, white, and "unseen color"not seen with the naked eye, such as laser, the universe, and microscopic images. Throughout, interesting quotes and surprising short insights in the captions give the reader an entirely new look at the color in the world around us.
Annie Griffiths was one of the first women photographers to work for National Geographic. She has photographed dozens of magazine and book projects for the Society, and her work has appeared in LIFE, Smithsonian, Paris Match, Stern, and many other publications. Annie has received awards from the National Press Photographers Association, Associated Press, National Organization of Women, and the White House News Photographers Association. She is a Fellow with the International League of Conservation Photographers. The author lives in Great Falls, Virginia.
We gave out at a vast and ever changing kaleidoscopelife in colorevery day. From the filmy pastels of a dream disappearing to the loud shocks of traffic lights, billboards, and fashion, color saturates our existence. Not only is color everywhere around us, but it is also in our minds and imaginations as well, an internal rainbow of appearances and meaning.
Color moves and motivates. Color calms and quiets. Color sings, color dances, color takes center stage in the theater of our lives. It is so woven into the fabric of our speech and vision, choice and circumstance that we rarely stop to pay attention.
Think about how the hazy blue of early morning street fog compares with the clear blue of a summer sky; how a still lake’s surface, despite all logic, takes on the orange of the setting sun; how green dapples and drenches our world, from the tiny new leaves of wildflowers underfoot to the electric night- time swaths of the northern lights overhead. Realize how red makes a statement sometimes it whispers, like the spotted carapace of a tiny ladybug; sometimes it flaunts itself, like bright lipstick on a proud woman’s smile.
Photographers do notice. They make a business of noticing. In the litany of principles that make a photograph great, color stands near the top of the list, at the service of both content and design. A photographer may look for color with care and attention, or color may burst on the scene as a serendipitous surprise. Either way, it stands as a primary character in many a great photograph.
Colors speak directly to our hearts, without words and in many cases without meaning. Although scientists can second-guess the evolutionary advantage of certain patterns and colors within the natural world, many examples seem to defy explanation. What is a dandelion flower saying with its yellow? What do the ruby red throat feathers of a humming- bird signify? There is something primeval and sensuous in paying attention to color. It is a celebration of the native senses without the filter of the intellect.