Quick Look: Ansel Adams App for the iPad

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Ansel Adams iPad app

Ansel Adams – a legendary name and now also the simple name of a new iPad app celebrating Ansel Adams’ work as a photographer.

The new Ansel Adams app for the iPad stopped me in my tracks last night when I was checking updates and having a quick glance at what was new in the App Store. I’m no photography buff, but I know that Adams is one of the most famous and acclaimed photographers ever, and even my untrained eye can see that his photos are the work of a real master of his craft.

Once I saw that this app is an ‘official’ app, created by the Ansel Adams Trust, I couldn’t wait to take a look at it.



Here is a little more Intro information on the app, straight from its App Store page:

Ansel Adams for the iPad provides a multi-tiered introduction to the life and work of the most honored American photographer of the twentieth century. This groundbreaking app has been made possible by the interactivity and luminous visual display of the iPad and was created by The Ansel Adams Trust in collaboration with Hachette Digital. It includes:

• A slideshow of 40 Ansel Adams photographs, with optional audio narration, written commentary, or synchronized music
• Option to run the slideshow with any musical selection from your iTunes library
• Send-an-e-card feature, allowing the user to create a vintage-looking e-postcard with an Ansel Adams photograph, enter a message, and email to friends directly out of the app
• Embedded video excerpts from documentary films about Adams
• Letters between Adams and Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O’Keeffe, Edward Weston, Garry Trudeau, President Carter, and others, with many shown in facsimile
• Delightful and amusing postcards that Adams sent to his closest friends Beaumont and Nancy Newhall while on the road photographing America’s wild places–with flip-to-read functionality
• Facsimile reproduction of the Ansel Adams Playboy interview, the most substantial print interview he ever gave
• A new chronology of the key moments in Adams’ life and career
• A complete bibliography
• Web links to sites of interest to Ansel Adams fans


— The stunning photography. Enough said.

Ansel Adams app for iPad

Ansel Adams iPad app


— The option to toggle on or off the audio narration, which provides some background on each image and the subject of it.

— The short video (or more like old time movie) clips of Adams at work – including the man himself speaking about his work. One phrase that struck me as a perfect reference point to his work was this one:

Elemental nature must always be approached with a reverential lens.

Ansel Adams iPad app

Ansel Adams iPad app

— The Letters section offers even more insight into the man himself and his dedication to his craft.


— Simple, elegant, and effective UI. The apps keeps controls and visual elements on all its pages to a minimum, and lets the photos and the content shine, which it absolutely does.

AnselonFilm— It’s a lovely little touch that you can even send an email post card with one of the Adams photographs attached. My wife adores his work – she’ll definitely be getting a postcard.



— None to speak of really. My only wish list item is for a few more photographs. There are just 40 in the app right now.

— The price is on the high side, in App Store terms anyway, which for some may be an issue. I can’t think of too many points of comparison for a one-of-a-kind app like this though. Interestingly the app is in the Books section of the App Store – and I wonder apps of this type fit better in the iBooks store – where paying $13.99 for a title of this quality and uniqueness may be better perceived by users.


This app is another perfect coffee table book sort of app for the iPad, with some excellent multimedia elements thrown in. A great subject, and great work showcased nicely in a beautiful app. One to enjoy and share with friends for a long time.

You can find the Ansel Adams app in the App Store now, priced at $13.99.

*** This app was independently purchased by the post author in the iPad App Store. For further information regarding our site’s review policies, please see the “About” page.

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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10 thoughts on “Quick Look: Ansel Adams App for the iPad”

  1. Grrr. Another US only publication. I [hates] it when they do that.
    Tap Tap. Publishers. Coo eee… There is more than one country in the world….

  2. Hi,

    Love the Ansel Adams app. In a similar vein, I saw an app on the iTunes store called IMAX TV that has something like 10 or 12 IMAX nature movies in it. Has anyone tried this app?

    This link is for version 2.0 but I saw version 3.0 in the iTunes store yesterday: http://bit.ly/fTIEda


  3. I bet Ansel’s images look incredible on the ipad’s screen. I think that photo books will see a renaissance due to the popularity of tablets like the ipad.

    1. Yes, they sure do – and I think you may well be right on your second point too.

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