Thursday, September 6, 2007

A Review of The Digital Photography Book

The Digital Photography BookA Review of The Digital Photography Book by Scott Kelby.

Amazon Description:
Scott Kelby, the man who changed the "digital darkroom" forever with his groundbreaking, #1 bestselling, award-winning book The Photoshop Book for Digital Photographers, now tackles the most important side of digital photography--how to take pro-quality shots using the same tricks today's top digital pros use (and it's easier than you'd think).

This entire book is written with a brilliant premise, and here’s how Scott describes it: "If you and I were out on a shoot, and you asked me, 'Hey, how do I get this flower to be in focus, but I want the background out of focus?' I wouldn't stand there and give you a lecture about aperture, exposure, and depth of field. In real life, I'd just say, 'Get out your telephoto lens, set your f/stop to f/2.8, focus on the flower, and fire away.' You'd say, 'OK,' and you'd get the shot. That's what this book is all about. A book of you and I shooting, and I answer the questions, give you advice, and share the secrets I've learned just like I would with a friend, without all the technical explanations and without all the techno-photo-speak."

This isn't a book of theory—it isn't full of confusing jargon and detailed concepts: this is a book of which button to push, which setting to use, when to use them, and nearly two hundred of the most closely guarded photographic "tricks of the trade" to get you shooting dramatically better-looking, sharper, more colorful, more professional-looking photos with your digital camera every time you press the shutter button.

Here's another thing that makes this book different: each page covers just one trick, just one single concept that makes your photography better. Every time you turn the page, you'll learn another pro setting, another pro tool, another pro trick to transform your work from snapshots into gallery prints. There's never been a book like it, and if you're tired of taking shots that look "OK," and if you’re tired of looking in photography magazines and thinking, "Why don't my shots look like that?" then this is the book for you.

The ONLY thing I can think of right now that I don't like about this book is that it isn't available in hardcover. Seriously, I'm going to wear this book out! I love the personal, down-to-earth approach in which Kelby authored this book. He also has a bit of a quirky sense of humor that really appealed to me and made it seem as if I were learning from a close friend rather than the President of NAPP (National Association of Photoshop Professionals). I also love the fact that every page is like a mini lesson, focusing on ONE aspect to help improve your droning on with complicated terminology for page after page in this book!
The book has 11 great chapters:
*Chapter 1 - Pro Tips for Getting Really Sharp Photos
*Chapter 2 - Shooting Flowers Like a Pro
*Chapter 3 - Shooting Weddings Like a Pro
*Chapter 4 - Shooting Landscapes Like a Pro
*Chapter 5 - Shooting Sports Like a Pro
*Chapter 6 - Shooting People Like a Pro
*Chapter 7 - Avoiding Problems Like a Pro
*Chapter 8 - Taking Advantage of Digital Like a Pro
*Chapter 9 - Taking Travel & City Life Shots Like a Pro
*Chapter 10 - How to Print Like a Pro and Other Cool Stuff
*Chapter 11 - Photo Recipes to Help You Get "The Shot"
Initially, you might be thinking (if you're like me), "I only want to be able good shots of my kids (or something else). I don't need to know about flowers and landscapes or that other stuff." Don't be fooled by the chapter titles, though. TRUST will learn something that you can apply to your photography goals in EVERY chapter of this book!

Not only that, but I have been wanting to make the upgrade to a true DSLR (I currently use a Canon S3IS) for some time now, but didn't really know where to start in terms of equipment. This book also really helped me flesh out my needs in terms of the photography I would like to achieve and create quite the wish list. Not all of the following items are specifically mentioned by Kelby, but through his tips and suggested products, I was able to better develop a list of the equipment that would serve my needs (at least as a beginner's DSLR set).
Yeah...pretty expensive list, but I'm saving my pennies.

In conclusion, I think this is a WONDERFUL reference for any photographer who wishes improve their skills. You will not be disappointed!

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