Monday, March 3, 2008

REVIEW: The Digital Photography Book

I was at the library this weekend and ran across a very fun book called The Digital Photography Book, Volume 1. Scott Kelby has a very fun and personable style where he doesn’t beat around the bush and just makes recommendations. As he puts it:

if we were out on shoot together and you asked me a question about how to focus on a flower but not the stalk, I’d say set your camera to f/2.8, focus on the flower, and shoot. I wouldn’t give you a lecture on aperture.

I LOVE this style! :-)

When he covers buying gear, he just flat out says – got to B&H and why he recommends them. He doesn’t go into a chapter of how to pick a good merchant or a feel good speech about buying local. He even has a website with his recommendations: http://www.scottkelbybooks.com/gearguide/ and he as recommendations based on three categories (w/ examples):

  1. I’m on a budget (aka married) (i.e., Bogen/Manfrotto 486RC2 - $65)
  2. I can swing it (the kids can work in college J) (Kirk BH-1 $355)
  3. I’m a rich bastard (Really Right Stuff BH-55 $455)

I love this style of book because there’s no bull$hit – just someone willing to give you his honest advice. I've purchased The Digital Photography Book, Volume 1 and The Digital Photography Book - Volume 2 from Amazon.com and plan to keep them in my big photography bag.

Conclusion

Skill Level: Beginner

Value: Excellent (worth 20 times as much for what you learn)

Recommendation: Highest Recommendation - if you only one book on photography, this is it!

UPDATE

This was one of my very first articles when I started this blog, so this review isn’t quite up to the standards of reviews I’d write today. However, I still strongly recommend this book and encourage you to read the feedback (as well as “look inside” on Amazon.com to see how good this book really is!

Get All Three Digital Photography Books

This and The Digital Photography Book - Volume 2 have been on my Which Books Should I Read? list since they came out, so it should come as no surprise that the new The Digital Photograph Book – Volume 3 is immediately added to that list. I recommend getting all three in this nice hard cover case as you’ll find yourself going back to read or reference these books over and over (or at least you should be if you are smart).

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