Friday, November 7, 2008

Some Books for the Weekend

I thought I would mention a few books that I have read or been reading over the past month or two. These are all books that I would recommend to photography enthusiasts to learn more about photography in general or just certain aspects of it. I will also link to the books on Amazon. However, the link is only for convenience and to show you the book's cover for identification. I am not an Amazon affiliate thus I don't get a portion of the sales of books you follow through the site. Buy them from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, your local bookstore, borrow them from a friend or check them out from a library.

Ok, enough of the disclosures and on with the books after the jump.

Rick Sammon's Exploring the Light: Making the Very Best In-Camera Exposures by Rick Sammon and published by Norton. This book strives to teach you how to see the light on your subject, adjust your camera for the image you imagine, and use Photoshop to boost it "to the next level". It is a very easy book to read with good descriptions and excellent photographs. Mr. Sammon touches on all aspects of exposure in a digital environment including basic introduction to post processing techniques such as levels and curves, hue and saturation adjustments, color adjustments such as black & white, high dynamic range (HDR) images, and panoramic stitching. While he does discuss post processing to "finish" photographs, he doesn't approach it as a tool to "fix" photographs unless the light just wasn't with you when you were out shooting. Most of the book goes into explaining aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and how to use your camera's various modes to get the exposures you need for the very best images to "finish" in Photoshop.

Face to Face: Rick Sammon's Complete Guide to Photographing People by Rick Sammon, published by O'Reilly. Another book by Mr. Sammon written in his conversational style. It delves into how he goes about interacting with strangers on his trips to get them to pose for him, how he poses them, how he finds good backgrounds, what equipment he uses and how best to use said equipment. If you are a people photographer, or want to get better at photographing people, this book is an excellent primer.

The HDRI Handbook: High Dynamic Range Imaging for Photographers and CG Artists by Christian Bloch, published by rockynook. I mentioned this book a few days ago but didn't link to it. It is a very technical book about HDR imaging in everthing from photography to motion film to computer graphics/animation. The book doesn't bog the read down in the technical details so much as it explains those details in an easy to understand way. The book discusses the pros and cons of several HDR applications for photographers and even includes a CD with some open source applications to get you started with HDR photography. There is a companion website over at hdrlabs where you can find discussion groups about the included software as well as HDR in general.

The Photographer's Guide to Landscapes: A Complete Masterclass by John Freeman, published by Collins & Brown. This book is just what it says it is. If you enjoy landscape photography then this is an excellent book to add to your library. Excellent photographs illustrate Mr. Freeman's discussions of landscape photography techniques.

Light - Science and Magic: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting, Third Edition by Fil Hunter, Steven Biver, and Paul Fuqua, published by Focal Press. This is one of those quintessential books that anyone serious about photography should read. It is about nothing other than how light interacts with objects, how to photograph that light, and what sorts of solutions you might need for various lighting situations. While most of the book uses studio photography due to the ability to precisely control light, the concepts are applicable to any style of photography. In the end, photography is about light and this book explains how to capture it.

That's it for now.

Keep shooting.

No comments: