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Recommended Books on Photography

I learned photography by reading books and magazines, and of course by getting out there and taking pictures. A good book on photography can supply just the inspiration you need to get out and take some great photos. Here are some of the best photography books I have come across and I would definitely recommend that you read some of them if you want to learn more.

trick photography and special effects

The Rough Guide to Digital Photography

There is nothing rough about this rough guide, it is a very comprehensive introduction to photography. Everything you need to know (for the first few years anyway) is right here is this compact volume that, if not quite pocket size, will fit nicely into a pocket of you gadget bag so you can always have it with you when you are out and about looking for that elusive great photo. it is packed with information about how to tackle a wide variety of subjects and what kit you will need, which is all presented in a modern 'magazine' style with side panels full of quick tips for easy reference and larger panels for extra detailed explanations.

The photos in the book are excellent and really do inspire you to try out the techniques and produce your own work, but mostly this is a 'how' book getting to the nuts and bolts of each genre and style of photography in sufficient detail to enable you to wade right in and start producing awesome pictures. - Geoff Lawrence

How to Take Great Photographs

When I started out back in the 70's one of my biggest inspirations was a book by John Hedgecoe. It's great to see that all these years later he is still writing great books. This one is full of inspirational ideas, if you want to improve your photography there are two things you need to swat up on. Technique is obviously important but it is no good without ideas. This book is full of great ideas. - Geoff Lawrence

Understanding Exposure

More than 100 vivid, graphic comparison pictures illustrate every point in this classic and can help any photographer maximize the creative impact of his or her exposure decisions. The author stresses the importance of metering the subject for a starting exposure and then explains how to use various exposure meters and different kinds of lighting. The book contains lessons on each element of the triangle and how it relates to the other two in terms of depth of field, freezing and blurring action, and shooting in low light or at night. A section on special techniques explores such options as deliberate under and over exposures, how to produce double exposures, bracketing, shooting the moon, and the use of filters. Understanding Exposure demonstrates that there are always creative choices about how to expose a picture - and that the decision is up to the photographer, not the camera.

Creative Nature & Outdoor Photography

A good book on photography should increase our knowledge of technique and the technicalities of the subject and/or inspire us with great photography and ideas. This book delivers on all fronts, if you are interested in the great outdoors then this is a 'must read'. - Geoff Lawrence

Stephen Johnson on Digital Photography

"We are in the Stone Age of digital photography. We've figured out how to make some tools, but it is just now beginning to dawn on us what we might do with them. I've often been frustrated at the concentration on the technical aspect of digital photography with so little discussion of the aesthetics and heart behind the image making. This book is essentially a distillation of what I've been teaching over the last 25 years."

Master photographer Stephen Johnson has been taking beautiful landscape photography for decades, and teaching others the practical art of image making since 1977. While he started out with traditional film camera techniques, Johnson is widely recognized among his peers as a pioneer of digital photography. Stephen Johnson on Digital Photography chronicles his ride on the bleeding edge of this medium's evolution, and provides a practical in-depth introduction to digital photography that offers the latest techniques for beginning and experienced photographers alike.

Digital Photography in Available Light

Digital Photography in Available Light is an inspirational guide as well as a structured learning tool for mastering the essential techniques. Learn how to choose the most appropriate digital camera for your workflow, manage your image files and process images using camera RAW. Try key capture techniques including exposure, framing the image and how to work with the available light in all situations. Explore different styles: panoramas, landscapes, environmental portraits and photo journalism. Understand ethics and law, how to plan a shoot and sell your work. Throughout you'll learn the importance of image design, communication of content and essential techniques for competent and consistent image capture and creation. Includes a full glossary of terms.

Professional Architectural Photography

In this highly visual, full color text Michael Harris shares his professional secrets and demonstrates how to achieve top quality architectural images. Brief histories of both architecture and architectural photography lay the foundations for the technical applications that follow. This third edition provides increased coverage of the revolution in digital photography, which is forcing all photographers to review their practices. The pros and cons of these developments are assessed through a comparison of the film and digital mediums and the highly debated variances in their quality and cost.

Michael Harris is a freelance photographer specializing in architectural and interior photography. His work covers a wide spectrum from industrial and commercial, to residential photography.

The Digital SLR Handbook

The ultimate reference for serious photographers making the switch from film to digital, The Digital SLR Handbook tackles head on all the issues with which traditional photographers struggle when getting to grips with shooting digital and digital image processing. Drawing on his own experience and his discussions with fellow photographers, best-selling digital photography author Michael Freeman answers the questions that photographers ask most often, and explains matters they can find confusing or difficult to understand. From sensors, storage media, and resolution, through formats, histograms, and dynamic range, to digital noise vs. film grain, color management, and image workflow - this book gives you all the information you need. Comprehensive in its scope and unrivalled in its depth, The Digital SLR Handbook is the definitive reference source for every professional or enthusiast photographer.

"PCPhoto" Digital SLR Handbook

Digital SLRs give you all the control, lens choices, and accessories of film cameras and the advantages of the newest, hottest technology available. Learn what to consider when choosing a digital SLR, master your camera's features and controls. Understand file formats, memory cards, and image management.

Mastering Flash Photography

This guide opens with in-camera flash basics, then moves to topics such as exposure flash readings, detachable units, flash guide numbers, bounce flash, and fill flash, then covers advanced methods for using off-camera flash, flash brackets, power packs, remote triggering, and other techniques.

The Magic of Digital Close-Up Photography

Digital cameras have some special advantages when it comes to taking close-up photos, as the author reveals in this excellent book. There are also some pitfalls to avoid, and the author covers them, too. While this book is aimed at intermediate to advanced photographers, even beginners can learn something from the friendly tone and thorough coverage. This book is a great tool for becoming a master of macro photography quickly.

Learning to See Creatively

Almost everyone can "see" in the conventional sense, but developing photographic vision takes practice. This work helps photographers visualize their work, and the world, in a whole new light. This revised and rewritten guide takes a radical approach to creativity. It explains how it is not some gift only for a few, but actually a skill that can be learned and applied. Using inventive photographs from his own portfolio, the author deconstructs creativity for photographers. He details the basic techniques that went into not only taking a particular photo, but also provides insights on how to improve upon it, so helping readers avoid the visual pitfalls that can lead to dull photographs. This edition features information on digital photography and digital imaging software, as well as a section on color as a design element.

The Perfect Portrait Guide: How to Photograph People

People are by far the most popular photographic subject. From taking informal shots to using backgrounds, colors and studio lighting, this book contains advice on how to get the best from models, whether posed or candid portraits. Lenses, film, light, composition and exposure are covered.

The Art of RAW Conversion:

How to Produce Art-Quality Prints with Adobe Photoshop CS2 and Leading RAW Converters

This is a book I intend to buy myself. I have become a big fan of the RAW format. Not for everyday use but for those special or difficult photos. Even just fumbling around by myself I find I can get really great results, if I knew what I was doing who knows what would be possible. - Geoff Lawrence


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