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Sunday
Aug032008

Further Reading: Books, Magazines, Websites and Podcasts

There's loads of great resources out there to help with our photography, so I've pulled together some of my favourites from the worlds of books, magazines, websites and Podcasts.




Books
The Digital Photography Book by Scott Kelby. The best selling digital photography book of all time, and for good reason. Scott uses a light-hearted style to help you improve your images.

Starting with the basics - taking sharp photos - then moving on to cover topics like shooting flowers, weddings, landscapes, etc, Scott makes things simple with a "If you want a picture like this, do this" approach, rather than getting too technical with information you don't need to know, yet.

This books in a small format, almost A5, and its probably the one photography book that every now and then I'll pick up, and read through it just to refresh my knowledge on certain points. It's filled with great photo's, and recipes to achieve those Photographs.

Now with a part 2, get both and you want be sorry - Scott Kelby's "The Digital Photography Book" is a resource every beginner Photographer should have to hand.


Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson. To take a well exposed photograph you need to get the balance between three things right - aperture, shutter speed and ISO setting. Sounds simple, and with the Auto Exposure settings on digital cameras we can often slip into not really thinking about exposure, or the creative control we can use.

Bryan takes the reader on a wonderful photographic journey through different styles and techniques - and at the heart of this is getting the exposure right. How do you handle a sunset? Snow covered fields? Silhouettes? Back and front lighting?

Reading this book, and applying what you learn will bring you closer to your camera and how it works - recommended.


Scott Kelby's 7 Point System For Photoshop. Photoshop is a bit intimidating - what do you do first? Which controls are best to use? In this book Scott walks us through 21 lessons, showing us exactly what do and when.

Start off by downloading the full resolution images from Scott's site, then you simply sit there, book in hand, at your PC, working through the examples. Scott starts off by explaining everything, then as you work through the chapters, things start to speed up as you tackle landscapes, portraits, product shots and more.

Quite simply, this book gave me my Photoshop work-flow. I might do some things differently, but before this I was just guessing, now I think I know what I'm doing!


Your local library. Honestly, get down to your local library and have a browse through the photography and art sections. Don't worry that the photo books are mostly about film - look at the pictures, understand the techniques, and hey, it may convince you to try a film camera, but you don't have to. 90% of the techniques covered in Film Books are still applicable today - even the darkroom stuff - just apply them to Photoshop instead!

Magazines

It's easy to spend a fortune on magazines, when for the price of a couple you could get a nice book with much more information, but there is something to be said for having a monthly intake of new ideas and inspiration, here's a couple of my favourites. (Don't know if they'll be readily available outside the UK though).

Practical Photography. News, reviews, galleries, tutorials, great magazine! Leaning towards the more serious dSLR owner, nevertheless Practical Photography offers much for the compact / bridge camera user.

With more emphasis on taking photographs rather than post processing than its sister magazine Digital Photo (below), I love reading the articles from Photographers, their hints, tips and advice. Recommended.


Digital Photo. This magazine is really about Photoshop and Elements tutorials.

Every month it comes with a cd-rom packed full of video tutorials, some from the magazine, but others covering separate subjects. Don't expect detailed reviews, but there's always some nice user pics, and if you did the tutorials every month, you'd be a Photoshop expert in no time.


Websites.

Where to start? These are a few of my favourites.

The Radiant Vista. Includes The Daily Critique and The Photoshop Workbench - great for tutorials.

The Luminous Landscape. Superb site, loads of reviews, tutorials and guides.

Adobe Video Workshop. From Elements to Photoshop, excellent free video tutorials.

The Strobist. All you need to know about about flash, wireless, radio, and technique.

Martin Bailey Photography. Inspirational images and a great forum.


Yourphototips. Post after post of great advice for every level of Photographer.

Podcasts.

Listen while you shoot, for the audio Podcasts, or put the video Podcasts on while the Mrs is watching Coronation St. (Remember, you don't need an ipod to listen to / watch podcasts, download itunes for free, and watch / listen to them on your PC.)

TWIP. Great banter, reviews and tips.

Tips From The Top Floor. Chris answers listeners questions, and usually tackles a new subject every week.

The Photoshop Workbench. Learn advanced techniques in Photoshop.

The Daily Critique. Watch a master craftsman at work.

F-Stop Beyond. Interviews with interesting photographers, some you'll know, others you won't, but all fascinating.

Martin Bailey Photography. Softly spoken, superb photographer, maybe my favourite Podcast.

Photoshop Killer Tips. Short clips - starts to repeat, but I keep watching, I forget them all the time!

Photoshop User TV. Mr Kelby's TV program - a must for Photoshop fans.

Pixelperfect. Join Bert as he shares his excellent Photoshop skills.

SCL. The Subject, Composition and Light Podcast. (Ahem!)

That lot should keep you going for a while! Got any recommendations of your own? Add your comments below.

Cheers, Rob.


Reader Comments (4)

Hey Rob,
Just wanted to drop by and say thanks for the link.

I'm really digging the blog and look forward to more great posts (yes that means I'm subscribing).

Damien Franco

August 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterYour Photo Tips

Cheers Damien!

I really appreciate your comments - love your site!

Thanks, Rob.

August 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRob_Nunn

I also really reccomend www.photoanswers.co.uk - its a great informational site with loads of tips, video tutorials, articals and more!

August 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMichael

Michael - great shout about that site - in fact I joined yesterday and uploaded some photo's.

August 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRob_Nunn

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