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
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
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.
you read a good photography book lately
that you can recommend to others? Tell
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
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:
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
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,
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
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