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Advanced Digital Black & White Photography Paperback – May 1, 2012

32 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John Beardsworth is a London-based photographer and bestselling writer who has authored nearly a dozen books about black-and-white digital photography and about using digital processing programs such as Photoshop and Lightroom.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Pixiq; Revised edition (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1454704195
  • ISBN-13: 978-1454704195
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 7.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #237,984 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 52 people found the following review helpful By M. Dougherty on December 6, 2007
Format: Paperback
I am a technical book addict. While I have only had this book 5 days, it has already paid for itself in improvement of my BW work. It is finely crafted, and to the point. It draws you in and it delivers for real world artists.

As a writer, I am struck by how well this book is structured and written, and the very fine layout of illustrations and methods. When you encounter an excellent technical book and find yourself immersed in it, sometimes you fail to notice the ease that essential information is being conveyed to you. Then suddenly it hits you, wow!, this is the gold standard. This is one of those books. It covers historical BW methods up to the present version of Photoshop, and then provides an outstanding and practical work flow in CS3. By understanding what has gone before, you understand better how CS3 takes BW to another level.

The book is written by a person who is technically competent, a fine writer, and a BW artist. He understands how to frame the issues, and pragmatically deal with accessing the Photoshop tools needed in real world work flow. It is easy to write a huge book that is just a grocery list of features. It is very difficult to write a book like this that is supremely competent, focused, concise, and outlines strategies of interest to real world working artists. I rate it as one of the finest books I have ever read on using software. If there are any other books written by this author, I will buy them on strength of this one.

I would say that someone with basic photoshop skills can easily use this book. If you lack these skills, I think this book would point you to what you need to learn. One of the challenges of learning photoshop is figuring what you need to know and what to ignore. This book finds that focus and is obviously written by a working artist. It is a tool unlike the bloated books that I own, that mostly collect dust and are consulted grudingly. Buy it, you will be pleasantly surprized.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Scott on October 23, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In the past 6 months I have read over a dozen photography and photoshop books. I would rate this amongst the best of the latter. The instructions for creating different techniques within photoshop are well illustrated in step by step fashion (a big plus for a newby to photoshop). It was definitely a little light on the overall theory behind B&W photography, so I would only rely on it if you have photoshop.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By T. Floyd on November 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
I've been doing photography for over 40 years, read lots of books, taken lots of workshops. Advanced Digital Black and White Photography is the best, most informative, educational experience I have ever had in photography. Period.
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38 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Knowledge is Power on February 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book has some good points and techniques which will aid any photographer in converting digital color photographs to workable B&W. With that being said, let the buyer beware; you will have to read between the lines (frequently) and make many of your own assumptions in order to really get to the bottom of what this author is trying to convey in the book.

I am extremely disappointed with the numerous typo's and vocabulary errors in the book. Also extremely disappointing are the assumptions made (by the author) as to the readers knowledge of Photoshop and being very experienced at using Photoshop myself, I am constantly shaking my head in dismay at the author's obvious lack of knowledge with Photoshop. His attempts to describe how to accomplish a task or technique using Photoshop many times lack accuracy and also lack adequate description for even an advanced user to know what he is trying to convey.

Bottom line, if you are inexperienced using Photoshop, don't buy this book. If you have experience using Photoshop, then be prepared to accept the fact that you probably have more experience than the author of this book and undoubtedly you too will notice the many inconsistencies and errors. I could give many examples, but what I am referring to is very evident through out the book.

My general consensus is that this was a quick throw together book, with no real proof editing, and no real concern for accuracy and worse of all, written by someone with no real writing skills. I will not buy another book written by this author.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By P. Sukhum on October 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
The author provides a convincing argument to shoot your B/W pictures in RAW color and then process the image in the digital darkroom. This workflow provides the maximum flexibility for filtration and other techniques. This book covers many Photoshop techniques that many users should find extremely useful. Assumes that the reader understands Photoshop basics.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Michael James on March 17, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is a great starting point for learning digital B&W conversions. It starts out with a little history and terminology of the B&W world, then dives into the different ways you can achieve this effect in Photoshop CS2, then in how to use the new B&W conversion tool in CS3. It does have a small section on Lightroom as well, but since Lightroom was new at the time of printing, this section is very thin.

I don't think the book is the definitive book for digital B&W, but I have found it very useful. I will say you will get more out of this book if you have CS3.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A. Brown on October 27, 2008
Format: Paperback
I borrowed this book from the library along with several other 'how-to' photography books, and this was the only one that pushed me to get up and actually try some of the tricks at the computer.
To get the most out of this book, you're shooting with a D-SLR in RAW and you've got PhotoShop. Yes, it's possible to shoot in black-and-white straight out of the camera, but that isn't really getting the most out of your camera. Converting to b&w via grayscale or desaturation isn't the best option either. PhotoShop will help you convert your color RAW images into stunning monochrome or Duotone, and this book is an invaluable guide.
I am not a PhotoShop novice, but I'm not an expert either. I'm an intermediate-level photography hobbyist. This book provided many tips and tricks that I did not yet know. It is so useful that I'm putting it on my Christmas list, because I haven't absorbed all of the info yet. It's by far one of the best specific guides to learning more about PhotoShop.
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