Those idle minutes of the day that are commonly used for social networking or checking one's stock portfolio can be put to an even more productive use -- expanding one's appreciation of great works of art.
The iPad/iPhone app Looking At Ansel Adams: The Photographs and the Man -- is designed to deepen understanding for some of this photographer's most iconic works.
It's a companion to the new book with the same title by Andrea Stillman.
Adams' black-and-white images are rendered in rich crisp detail on the iPad Retina display. Interactive features illuminate the artist's process and vision. Descriptions show how he experimented with the printing process to achieve his spectacular final results. Slideshows have audio commentary by Ms. Stillman. The app also contains correspondence between Adams and his colleagues in the art world.
Looking At Ansel Adams is available in both free and paid versions: The $2.99 paid version has additional material from the book and an interactive map of locations where the photos were taken.
For a basic introduction to the world of great paintings, DailyArt is worth a download.
It sends out the image of a painting every day, along with a brief description. The selections range from well-known to lesser-known paintings
The entire collection can be viewed by swiping to the left or right.
The app comes from Moiseum, a Warsaw, Poland-based tech consulting company for museums and cultural institutions. DailyArt is free and available for Android and iPhone/iPad devices:
Both of these apps are rated for ages 12 and older -- DailyArt because of mild mature themes, sexual content and nudity and horror/fear themes, and the Adams app for mild alcohol, tobacco and drug use or references.
Adrian McCoy: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1865.