QT Luong has updated and expanded his national parks book by adding 24 more pages, 28 new locations, and revising all the maps. Treasured Lands: A Photographic Odyssey Through America's National Parks pays tribute to the millions of acres of protected wilderness and historical heritage in all our country's 61 national parks, including the two designated since the award-winning first edition was published in 2016 and became an instant classic.
Luong, who is featured in Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan's documentary The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, is the most prolific and versatile photographer working in the national parks today and the only one to have made large-format photographs in each of America’s 61 parks. In an odyssey that spanned more than a quarter centery and 300 visits, Luong ventured through each park with cameras at the ready, capturing the majesty and unique beauty of the nation’s preserved habitats. From canyons and deserts to glaciers and reefs, the photographer focused his lenses on spectacular iconic landscapes and rarely seen remote spots, presenting his journey in this sumptuous gallery of more than 500 breathtaking images that are so sharp and have so much detail, they are the next best thing to being there.
Accompanying this collection of scenic masterpieces is a comprehensive guide that includes a map for each park that indicates where the images were shot, as well as extended captions that detail the images’ orientations and lighting, along with pertinent facts on the parks’ geography and natural history. Designed to inspire outdoor adventurers to visit the parks and invite photographers to re-create these landscapes through their own lenses, the guide also provides anecdotal observations that give context to the pictures and convey the sheer scope of Luong’s extraordinary odyssey. The guide is also available as a PDF formatted for use on mobile devices, and owners of the books are offered the option to download it for a nominal fee.
Including an introduction by award-winning author and documentary filmmaker Dayton Duncan, Treasured Lands is a rich visual tour of the US National Parks and an invaluable guide from a photographer who hiked (and sometimes paddled, dived, skied, snowshoed, or climbed) each park, shooting in all kinds of terrain, through all seasons, and at all times of day and night. QT Luong’s timeless gallery of the nation’s most revered landscapes beckons to nature lovers, armchair travelers, and photography enthusiasts alike, keeping America’s natural wonders ever within reach.
1st edition, published by Cameron+Company, October 2016.
2nd edition, published by Terra Galleria Press, August 2019.
Download foreword and introduction (PDF)
Praise for Treasured Lands
“Treasured Lands is a masterwork, showcasing the wonders of our National Parks, along with the incisive and artistic vision of photographer QT Luong. He demonstrates consummate versatility in capturing extraordinary and meaningful images from all 59 Parks. The book also contains valuable information for photographers on how each image was made. This a book that I will savor again and again.”
— Charles Cramer, photographer of Yosemite
“In Treasured Lands, Luong shares with us something vastly more than his vision, which is beautiful and uncontrived, and his knowledge, which is considerable; he shares with us hope. Hope that the vast land of America remains wild at heart despite our best efforts to tame it."
— David Duchemin, author of Within the Frame, founder of Craft & Vision
“Treasured Lands represents an act of commitment, hard work and love for “America’s best idea.” Images recording 59 National Parks illustrate the biological and geographic diversity that defines our national treasures. QT Luong’s images offer an honest and faithful portrait of the land, without the glitz and gonzo colors so prevalent in today's photography. This is a fine collection of images."
— Jack Dykinga, author of A Photographer's Life: A Journey from Pulitzer Prize-Winning Photojournalist to Celebrated Nature Photographer
“QT Luong's Treasured Lands is the book I would have loved to have when I was dreaming of visiting America's National Parks. Part travel guide and part inspirational photographic opus, it is a complete, yet concise resource to all the parks. I'm enthusiastically recommending Treasured Lands, a seminal and immensely useful book backed by years of research.”
— Laurent Martres, author of Photographing the Southwest, publisher of PhotoTripUSA guides
“QT Luong's Treasured Lands book is a revelation. QT’s artistic and encyclopedic collection of photographs stuns and enlightens the viewer with each image’s wondrous light, geology, flora, and fauna. His epic journey allows us to breathe in the diverse delights of each and every national park through his meticulously crafted photographs. America’s national parks are justly famous for their beautiful landscapes, for the brilliant concept of preserving them for future generations, and Treasured Lands provides the ultimate guide for travelers and photography lovers who cherish them.”
— William Neill, photographer, author of Landscapes of the Spirit
“Treasured Lands is the culmination of a multi-decade effort that showcases the national parks in all their natural splendor and diversity. The work serves as a memorable statement of the importance and value of protecting the parks and an inspiring invitation to those who have yet to fulfill their curiosity and discover all the remarkable wonders that can only be found in these special places.”
— Will Shafroth, president, National Park Foundation
“More than a testament to the beauty of the National Parks, this book is also the life work of a devoted and inspired photographer. QT's images portray not only wonders of land and life, but also express his great reverence and love for the Parks in exquisite compositions, great attention to light, and uncompromising technical excellence. I
can think of no better introduction to the Parks and to the great value they possess for the human spirit than seeing them through the eyes of a dedicated naturalist and photographic artist.”
— Guy Tal, author of More Than a Rock: Essays on Art, Creativity, Photography, Nature, and Life
“QT Luong’s National Park images represent a new generation’s artful and at times wonderfully different view of our most sacred and beautiful lands. Reseeing the National Parks is a herculean task, but Luong has come through with new ideas, and new ways of portraying and communicating the light and the magic.”
— Tom Till, photographer, author of Photographing the World
Editorial Reviews: Print
“If you're a fan of our National Parks and want the best book about them yet to be published, I recommend you beat a path to your bookstore and buy it.”
“The centennial of the National Park Service has been the occasion of [...] many books. The most glorious of these is Treasured Lands . . . No one has captured the vast beauty of America’s landscape as comprehensively . . . In his extensive captions, Luong comes through as a generous, thoughtful guide”
“[A] treasure trove of vivid images from every national
park, hundreds of them from sea to shining sea, in large
format... Luong’s visually stunning book reminds us to
look at what we’ve already seen ... but with a new
appreciation. A fresh perspective.
“To be sure, it is a visual feast. But it’s much more than that,
because of its geographic completeness and the attention
to detail that only someone who has lived and breathed the parks for a
long time could provide . . .
For an avid photographer and national park fanboy like myself, the real treasure trove is buried in Luong’s descriptions of the images, which are plotted on a map and accompanied by precise directions, details and anecdotes . . .
Luong is willing to share turn-by-turn, step-by-step directions to the exact locations of his images, as well as commentary about the best time of day, or season of the year, during which to photograph them.”
“The book not only serves as a marvelous example of what this talented photographer has accomplished after many years exploring some of the most beautiful places in America, but it also acts as a guide for his fellow photographers who may want to travel to the parks too. It's a
must-have for fans of landscape photography in particular and lovers of the National Parks in general.”
Editorial Reviews: Online
“Both an art book and a guidebook in one, it is a masterpiece and a fitting tribute to our most treasured landscapes . . . definitive in its scope, content, and beauty . . . if there ever was an art book to have as your own or give to someone else, this would be the one. It is an important book on many levels; as a tribute to our national parks, as a tribute to a 20-year project of passion, as a monumental body of artwork, as inspiration to enjoy, admire and take care of our public lands, as a photography resource and a travel guide and perhaps most importantly as a reminder of what a treasure our National Parks are.”
The coffee table designation itself implies a place of highest honor . . . For lovers of the American landscape and photography alike, no book is more deserving of this hallmark designation than Treasured Lands by QT Luong . . . This multiple award-winning book is produced using the highest quality printing materials and processes.
“[T]ruly a labour of love, a once in a lifetime achievement . . .
are of a consistently high standard and the
location information tells readers everything
they need to know if they want to visit
these locations to take photographs for
themselves. Highly recommended.”
“As a photographer or videographer, the advantages of this book over reading a regular tourist travel guide is obvious. It’s really fantastic and fills your head with creative ideas even before you step foot in the park . . . His images are perfect companion pieces to the detailed information because they truly inspire wanderlust . . .
The book compiles an impressive range of information and photo inspiration that one simply isn’t going to pick up on by looking at Google Earth or learn without spending a lot of time checking out multiple research sources and probably visiting once or twice.”
“The photographs within the book are quite beautiful and QT manages to (mostly) avoid the most cliched views of each park so many of the images reveal something new to the viewer . . .
[W]e love this book and suggest that you will too . . . If you have any interest in classic US photography at all, go and buy it!”
“The consistently high quality of the photos is striking; hundreds of ﬁne photographs, and no ‘ﬁller’ shots . . . Every one of the parks is gorgeously rendered, from the giant Alaskan parks to the tiny "pocket parks" in the east, and the ancillary information is a delight. I can't recall any other photographer including detailed notes and maps demonstrating how to reach every one of his or her subjects, including the most remote locations. Pure catnip for landscape photography hobbyists.
Readers Reviews: Blogs
“[E]asily the most amazing, most magnificent, most beautiful book I’ve ever seen . . . Treasured Lands isn’t just a giant photo book, though. It contains a wealth of information about the history, geography, and many other important aspects of each Park, as well as maps that show you where he shot each image . . . QT’s book beautifully documents the entire National Park System better and more comprehensively than probably any other book, video or compilation ever created. There is no more definitive photography collection of these parks in a single volume anywhere. ”
“There are, I think, two ways to read this book. One is as a collection of some of the best nature photos that can be seen in print. I just love QT’s natural, understated approach to landscape photography. You won’t find over-saturated colors and unnatural HDR effects here . . . The other way one can take this book is as a photographer’s guide to the US National Parks . . . No matter which way you decide to take it, “Treasured Lands” is sure to keep you informed and amazed at the beauty of American nature for a long time. I don’t think there’s anything like that on the market right now. QT’s dedication and love for his subject shows clearly through every page of his book. Highly recommended.”
“[E]very image leaps off the page with a sense of joyful discovery and a new-found sense of wonder, excitement and surprise . . . This isn’t a collection of standard shots for postcard #12, but a collection of highly personal photographic statements . . . How wonderful that the pictures, while technically brilliant, are so emotionally compelling, too! Bravo all around.”
“Treasured Lands is a big, beautiful, coffee-table book with photographs of all 59 U.S. national parks. Just visiting all 59 parks would be quite an achievement, but to make artistic photographs of all these places in different seasons and varying weather conditions is an amazing feat.”
“Luong managed to make what I consider some of the best photographs ever made of certain areas . . . To accompany this colossal collection of effective and moving illustrations, Q. T. Luong wrote a text that flows and delivers just as well as the images . . . The sheer volume of work, in and of itself is impressive, but the consistent quality and exemplary execution make Treasured Lands a truly monumental achievement. Even as the son of Philip Hyde, or perhaps especially as the son of Philip Hyde, I am going to go out on a limb and say that Treasured Lands is one of the greatest large format landscape photography books ever published. It will live on and influence photographers for years and perhaps even generations to come.”
“Without physically seeing the Treasured Lands book for yourself, it is difficult to characterize how much of an accomplishment it is to visit all of these places, photograph them well and in diverse ways, write about each park, and pull everything together into a coherent narrative and visual celebration of America’s Best Idea . . . this book surely deserves a place in your collection, both because of the visual inspiration and because it offers a treasure trove of information that could be helpful in expanding your own photographic pursuits. We keep this book in a prominent place in our own home and both continually come back to it to enjoy the photographs and seek out new places to explore on our own.”
“The book is a stunning accomplishment, both in the beauty of the photographs and in the thorough documentation of the nature and uniqueness of each of the parks. Tuan is uniquely qualified to create such a tome. His relentless perseverance in his quest to explore all the national parks, to discover the locations and light conditions that are essential ingredients in his images, will now benefit us all.”
See links to more reviews, book lists, author interviews...
Readers Reviews: Amazon
“As someone who loves the National Parks, and loves photography, I find this book stunning and inspiring. Easily the best National Park photography book that I've seen (and I've seen quite a few)."
“Awesome photographs of the national parks. Not only is the technical quality of the photos top notch but, even more important to me, the photographer did not simply re-photograph the "iconic" views that appear in virtually every other book on the parks. He saw the parks with a fresh eye and presents his own unique visual experiences of the parks.”
— J. Bullard
See more than 200 customer reviews on Amazon (average 4.9/5, 95% 5-star) where Treasured Lands has been a #1 best-seller in all its categories.
“This is, hands down, the best photographic essay on the 59 National Parks. I have many others in my library (many very good) and have visited all 59 parks . . . This is so much more than a coffee table book.”
“The title doesn't oversell this body of work - it is truly an odyssey, an impressive undertaking that likely no one else will ever replicate. . . As someone who has been viewing landscape photography on a daily basis for years, as that is what I do professionally, I do not tire of looking through this book - and it provides me with fresh inspiration every time I peruse it.”
“This is my favorite book of national park photography, out of over 100 books I've bought in the last 30+ years of exploring our national parks. I bought this bought when it first came out, and have studied QT Luong's gorgeous photos and wonderful narrative very carefully, and taken the time to compare his photos with those of my other favorite nature photographers including Galen Rowell, David Muench, Joseph Holmes, Art Wolfe, Frans Lanting, Eliot Porter, Jack Dykinga, and of course Ansel Adams -- QT Luong's photos equal and frequently surpass the most stunning photos of these other great photographers. But QT's book goes well beyond these other photographers by explaining how you can walk the same trails that he took -- so you can experience these wonderful locations up "close and personal" with your family and friends, and take your own pictures."
“A masterpiece for sure!"
— Rick Sammon (ricksammon.com)
“Having printed numerous photo books myself, I was greatly impressed by the heavy-weight paper and the gorgeous print job . . . This is truly a masterpiece, worthy of the 100th anniversary of the national park system. It is so affordably priced for what you are getting that everyone who loves the national parks should buy a copy.”
“I have more than a dozen photography books that focus on America's National Parks, and this book is far and away the best photography book ever published about America's National Parks . . . I can't believe the price was only $40. I would have paid triple the price to add this book to my collection.”
QT Luong is a full-time freelance photographer.
Born to Vietnamese parents in Paris, France, he
was trained as a scientist (PhD U. Paris). The revelation of the high
Alps led him to become a mountain climber. When
he came to the US to conduct research in the fields of Artificial
Intelligence and Image Processing for what was to be a short stay, he
chose UC Berkeley, because of the proximity to Yosemite--a world class
rock climbing destination.
There, he fell in love with the National Parks and decided to
photograph all of them with a 5x7 large format camera, a
single-handed, self-financed, monumental project that had not been
completed by anyone before. To that effect, he settled in the San
Francisco Bay Area and started crisscrossing this country to capture
its diverse beauty. QT's in-depth coverage of the Parks often dictated
long hikes into the backcountry, with a 75 lb backpack, and only his
passion and dedication to keep him company. By 2002, he had visited
each of the 58 National Parks. In 2009, Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan featured him
as one of the few living characters in their film The National Parks: America's Best Idea.
QT Luong has been profiled in newspapers (New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle) and magazines (National Geographic Explorer,
Outdoor Photographer, Parks). His photographs, which are
the subject of three previous books, have appeared in Time, Life,
Outside, Scientific American, GEO, numerous National Geographic
publications, and hundreds of others worldwide. Luong’s
limited-edition prints are widely collected, and his on-going
traveling exhibition of large prints from all the national parks has shown in museums and galleries nationwide and abroad. He
lives in San Jose, California, with his wife and two children. For
more of his work, visit terragalleria.com