(London: William Heinemann, Ltd., 1925).
FINE FIRST EDITION WORK. This is the first trade edition of this important work first published in 1924 by the Medici Society Ltd. in an imperial quarto edition limited to 550 copies. It retains all of the illustrations, including the magnificent 4 page fold-out close-up photograph of half a dozen advancing elephants. Even the trade edition has become difficult to find in collectible condition.
"[It] has been my desire," Maxwell states in his introduction, "to secure photographic records of incidents in big game hunting, incidents such as are found in the writings of well-known hunters, and to illustrate these experiences by actual photographs wherever and whenever fortune has turned my way, and given me opportunities to obtain an accurate shot with the camera instead of the rifle."
Maxwell pays his respects to C. G. Schillings and A. Radclyffe Dugmore, pioneers in the field of big game photography. But while these gentlemen attempted to capture game animals in their natural setting, neither was able to capture them with enough detail to satisfy the naturalists. In order to accomplish this Maxwell tried to use a telephoto lens as little as possible and relied primarily on an ordinary lens with a focal length of six to ten inches, a habit which necessitated close proximity to the animals in order to obtain the best shot. The results are stunning. Many of the photos depict animals staring into the camera with tense suspicion, in graceful motion as they flee, or actually charging the camera (and being dropped by bullets when necessary).
Almost all these photos are quite artfully composed, the difficulty of which, under the circumstances, speaks highly of Maxwell's sense of aesthetics and skill as a photographer. The book also includes an introductory chapter on "A Camera Huntsman's Equipment" and an appendix on the natural history of the elephant and "Primeval Man and the Pleistocene 'elephas.'" Item #28283
First trade edition and first issuance other than the limited edition. With 113 plates after photographs by the author, many of them folding or panoramic, also with a color folding map. Royal 4to, publisher’s original navy cloth, blindstamped on the upper cover and gilt-lettered and ruled on spine. xxiv, 206, including appendices and index pp. A bright and handsome copy in a fine state of preservation throughout.