High Aspirations

July 16, 2015 / by NATALIE BAYONA  – Boulder Weekely

How Ansel Adams’ Photos Made America a Better Place

If it doesn’t meet my standards, tear them up,” Ansel Adams tells his chief assistant Mary Alinder.

It’s 1979, and Alinder sits at a table with a stack of 22 prints of “Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico” in Adams’ photography studio in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California and begins to seek out the photographic qualities that merit Adams’ approval. But by the time lunch was called, she hadn’t trashed one.

“I sat there thinking … they were selling for $10,000 on the open market, and it could feed a family forever in India,” she recalls.

Irresolute, she explains herself to Adams.

“You’re standing between me and how people consider my work,” Adams protests. “If prints go out that don’t meet my standards — it’s impossible for me to think of. You have to do this.” read more