Monday, 8 July 2013

how not to ask for financial support

From Ansel Adams at 100 by John Szarkowski:
A small part of Adams’ correspondence is devoted to trying to persuade his rich friends that his work needed and deserved support. He was, alas, not good at writing the kind of letter that might have gotten results. In 1952 Adams wrote a seven-page, single-spaced, typewritten letter to his friends George and Betty Marshall which I believe is an appeal for financial help. I am, however, not sure; and it is possible that the Marshalls were not sure, either. Adams did get a little support from his friend[s] <...> But such help never gave Adams what he needed, and it is not clear that Adams ever told any of his friends or potential supporters, in one hundred words or less, precisely what it was that he did need. Perhaps he was not sure.