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You are hereHome > Shop > Photography Books

Photography Books

The Portfolios of Ansel Adams with an Introduction by  John SzarkowskiOne of the best ways to learn about photography is to learn from the experiences of others. Your local library is filled with photography books with subject material appropriate to any photographic skills level. Start with the basics. My personal mistake, when I first started in photography, was to try to emulate the masters, such as Ansel Adams, using a cheap plastic camera and absolutely no background in photography. It is much better to get the fundamentals down pat, and progress from there. True, taking good pictures with a digital camera is much more than recording sharp pixels -- but understanding how a certain picture was technically obtained can be an education all its own. With a good understanding of the principles of composition and exposure, you can then learn to 'catch the decisive moment.'

The book reviews featured here are meant to help you decide if a particular book will be helpful to you. We have tried to include at least one book from different categories that might interest our readers. If you cannot find them in your local library, you may purchase these featured books, or other books, through our association with Amazon.com. You may also do a search for other books.

Whether you are buying for yourself, or as a gift for a budding photographer, a good photography book is always a welcomed gift. Within its pages is a treasure trove of hints and tips and good principles that will be referred to again and again -- and the experience gained will, we all hope ;o), be reflected in better photographs.

Have you read a good photography book lately that you can recommend to others? Tell us.

 

Buy or Read more about: National Geographic Photography Field Guide: Secrets To Making Great Pictures

National Geographic Photography Field Guide: Secrets To Making Great Pictures
-- by Peter K. Burian, Robert Caputo, National Geographic Society.

Burian and Caputo share the secrets to making great photographs in this engaging and informative guide: * Making photographs of people, landscapes, and wildlife; * How-to tips from ten of National Geographic's top photographers; * Charts for selecting the right film, filter, and exposure; * Cameras, lenses, and maintenance; * Using existing light and flash; * Tips on effective composition; * Computers and photography; * Travel tips and gear; * Photography Web site.

 

-- by Jeff Wignall, Eastman Kodak Co. Staff. Aimed at those who are just starting photography and those who have been taking pictures for a while. Presents one concept per page. Explains camera controls, lenses, autofocusing, exposure, film, flash units, and simple picture-taking techniques. 128 pages (over 90 illustrations), 8-1/2 x 11.

 

-- by Lee Frost. 'Unlike most other techniques books, the techniques shown here are very practical and easily tried out, with the f-stops, FL and shutter on every photo (unlike many other books). Most of the techniques you will ever need are included, and more. Well served as a field guide too, it's fairly small to tuck into the camera bag.

Excellent writeups and light-hearted reading, so good it's one of my most often read books. Not much of a coffee table since the images are fairly small. Another excellent book from Lee is Night and Low Light Photography, a seldom touched area of photography.' (Reviewer: Darren Chong)

 

-- by Lee Frost. Aimed at photographers who pack away their cameras as soon as light levels fall, this brilliant book shows how, with just a little skill and imagination, even amateurs can produce breathtaking photographs in nighttime or low-light settings. The guide begins with a clear explanation of technical aspects that must be considered, such as the best equipment to use for low-light indoor or nighttime outdoor shots, which color and black-and-white films to choose, how to ensure correct exposure in tricky situations, and details relating to both natural and artificial light. The book then tackles a wide range of themes and lighting situations, presenting specific guidance for shooting low-light landscapes, portraits, buildings, carnivals, fireworks displays, and weather phenomena such as lightning, sunrises, and sunsets.

 

-- by Dave Johnson. "I'm fairly experienced in 'traditional'photography, having shot semi-professionally for a few years, but was looking for a comprehensive reference on digital photography. Johnson's 'How To Do Everything' is what I wanted, and more.

Geared towards beginners to both digital imaging and photography in general, Johnson walks the reader through all the important steps: choosing a digital camera, understanding the basics behind photography, composing and making good photos, and what to do with them once you've taken them. The author uses clear, non-technical language to explain his points, and numerous photos and screen shots are included to help the reader. An expanded table of contents, as well as a thorough index, make it quick and easy to find specific information, though beginners would do well to read the entire book through first to gain a basic understanding of the material. Even though it looks like a formidable amount of text, it really reads quite quickly and easily.

 

-- by Ben Long. Go beyond the basics with this comprehensive start-to-finish guide. Written for all levels of photographers, Complete Digital Photography delves into the real differences between traditional and digital photography, and explains how to make a smooth transition. If you're an amateur or hobbyist photographer, you'll learn about the fundamental technical concerns of shooting quality digital images. If you're an experienced film photographer who is switching to digital, you'll learn what's different about shooting digital, and how to adjust your working style to the latest technology. You'll also journey through the techniques used for choosing the right exposure, filters, and flash and learn how these choices can be a bit different when shooting digital.

Using practical tutorials, you'll work through key issues such as image editing, color correction, noise reduction, special effects, and more. And you'll learn how to get the best output possible, whether your images are going to print, video, or the web.

 

-- by M. David Stone, Ron Gladis. From snapping birthday photos to sharing an online album, discover faster, smarter ways to work with your digital camera and images. Get expert guidance and examples on how to pick the right camera, compose better shots, retouch photos, and more.

 

-- by Gregory Georges. 50 Fast Digital Photo Techniques is an immensely useful book for anyone wanting to take advantage of photo-quality printers, digital cameras, Web technologies, Adobe's Photoshop, and other top photo editing apps. The techniques are valuable to those with artistic skills as well as those without -- they enable everyone to enjoy successful creation of fine art images and prints! The step-by-step and richly illustrated collection of awesome techniques are easily accessible and understandable to users on every level.

This is a new kind of Photoshop book -- one that can help both casual users and professional users create and enjoy fine art prints without having to become an expert in Photoshop.

 

-- by Julie Adair King. 'If you're comfortable with the concept of photography but find the digital part a stumbling block, Digital Photography for Dummies will get you over the hump.

Author Julie Adair King, a photographer and graphics-software specialist, deftly explains such concepts as resolution, f-stop, and compression. She is also refreshingly upfront about the differences between film-based and digital photography, spelling out the latter's shortcomings early on. Her advice on all aspects of the field is well thought out and simple without being condescending. She informs readers, for example, that you needn't use high-pixel resolutions simply for placing images on a Web page. Such tips will come as a relief to fledgling photographers on a budget, or novices who may have thought they had to use the highest-quality settings at all times.

Photoshop Elements 2 for Dummies -- by Deke McClelland and Galen Fott

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