Reviews for Lights in the Landscape
World Lighthouse Society
Every now and then I have the pleasure of reviewing a book that so captures my soul that I want to immediately book airfare so I can see for myself the beautiful sites displayed in its pages. Lights in the Landscape: New Zealand Lighthouses by Grant Sheehan is definitely one of them…
The photos perfectly capture the wild beauty of the coastline, the often unpredictable weather and the wildlife that lives in the mostly isolated areas…
Although the book’s main asset is the photography, each lighthouse is accompanied by short, engaging anecdotes including histories and accounts of the author’s own experiences when visiting the lights…
This book would be a wonderful addition to the library of anyone with an interest in lighthouses, land and seascapes, and photography. Not to mention that it served as the perfect enticement for this reader to start planning a trip to the land of the Kiwis.
Donna Suchomelly (U.S.A.)
This is something of a sequel to the excellent 2011 photo book, Ghosts in the Landscape, and photographer Grant Sheehan returns with another scenic tour of New Zealand’s lesser seen attractions — this time dedicated to the lighthouses dotting our shoreline.
Impressive artefacts of engineering as they may be, lighthouses don’t really jump out as obvious fodder for a luxuriant photo book. But Sheehan has mined both the structure’s symbolic heft – the lonely watcher, vigilant protector, light in the darkness, and so forth – and cast a wide-angled eye to their position in varied environments to produce a richly varied overview of these often isolated locales.
Anyone familiar with Ghosts will already know just how accomplished a landscape photographer Sheehan is (indeed, a fair few lighthouses appear in that volume too), but where he was previously working exclusively with deep monochrome, here we have a book full of warm earth and ocean tones.
Each location is examined in rigorous detail, with a mix of straight landscapes, aerial views, coastal seascapes, starry skies, architectural detailing and wildlife shots, all accompanied by thorough text on the author’s experience with each lighthouse, how to find them, and technical details of operation.
It’s possibly the most detailed tour of the subject New Zealand has ever seen, and it’s without a doubt the most visually spectacular. Published by Sheehan’s own Phantom House Books, the design quality naturally matches the immaculate nature of the images themselves.
— Adrian Hatwell, D-Photo, Feb-Mar 2014
F11 ran a feature article in their December 2013-Jan 2014 Issue 28.
Download the article from F11 (PDF 3.3mb)
AA Directions ran a competition to win a copy of Lights in the Landscape: New Zealand Lighthouses in their Autumn 2014 edition. They also said:
This tribute is about more than New Zealand’s lighthouses – it honours the rugged landscapes they punctuate, the drama and beauty of the coastline and the accompanying weather-whipped sky.
In Light in the Landscape – New Zealand Lighthouses, photographer Grant Sheehan journeys from the top of the North to the toe of the South with a clear eye, an appreciation for light and an obvious affection for his project. Small histories, some technical detail, directions to the lighthouses featured and conversations with some of the last keepers weave around the real heart of this beautiful book: the imagery.