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152 of 155 people found the following review helpful
on April 22, 1998
Quick! What f-stop should you use when you've got 400 film, 1/250 sec. shutter speed and it's a cloudy day? Stumped? Maybe you don't know the difference between an f-stop and a stop sign? Or maybe you just got a new camera and can't figure out why there are so many knobs and buttons. If any of the above apply to you, then this book must be in your collection. Horenstein's book is helpful for the beginning photographer or for those who want to experiment with black and white photography, a lost art making a comeback. It teaches you about photographic composition, film speed, aperture settings, and shutter speeds. You'll even learn how to develop your own film, if you're so inclined. Even if you just want great pictures that will last a lifetime (did you know that color photos are more likely to fade over time than black and white?), you'll enjoy experimenting with the techniques offered in this helpful manual.
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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
on June 16, 1999
I like this book because it's just what a beginner needs to get started on photography. It explains techniques and methods regarding focus, exposure, film developing and printing in a clear and concise manner. Definitely a lot better than my camera manual!
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2001
Owning and understanding this text is the Learner's Permit for Black and White Photography. It offers all of the information that a beginning photographer needs to know to make black-and-white photographs. It is written for a neophyte -- someone who has the passion for photography, but does not yet understand the compexities involved. As such, if the reader is an experienced photographer, they will most likely find a better reference elsewhere. However, for someone breaking into the field it is invaluable, and is used as the textbook for a few local institutions offering classes in black-and-white photography.
By its very nature, it realizes that not every aspect of professional photography will be covered. Hence, professional finishing techniques (among other things), while alluded to, are not explored in detail (nor should they be). If the text were meant to be a comprehensive volume covering all aspects of photography, the size and technical detail would be intimidating to someone new to the field. Since, however, it is meant as an introductory text, it succeeds quite well. All of the information that an inexperienced photographer needs is contained herein (camera design, film ratings, aperture, speed, processing, basic finishing, etc.). I recommend it to anyone interested in photography and the basics of photographic technique.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on May 29, 2001
Took a photography course and our instructor (a photojournalist) recommended this as the "if you buy one book, buy this book" book. Very good value, includes recipies for mixing up the darkroom chemicals, tips on taking better picture, explanations of terms, etc. Has some great photographs as examples.....
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on December 26, 2002
For 10 semesters I've taught a subject involving imaging and science. In their lab sessions, my students have to learn how to take, develop, and print B&W images. We use Horenstein each term as the recommended text.
I can look at a print a tell if that student has worked with Horenstein - those who use this text produce much, much better prints than those who rely only upon what we teach in our lab sessions.
Why? Because half of the art of great images lies in the darkroom, not the camera. (Or, for digital media, half of the art lies in Photoshop and not in the camera. The other half may lie in the printer.)
To produce excellent images, you need to start with the basics (as laid out by Horenstein), and then spend lots of time in the darkroom learning these skills by using them.
Once you know how the tools of the darkroom can transform a mediocre negative into a handsome print, you will be ready to learn how to capture excellent images on the negative and transform them into heart-stopping prints.
Look through the table of contents - if you already know this things, then move on. If they strike you as things you really should know, give Horenstein a chance!
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon February 1, 2004
Even though the photography world seems to be going completely digital, film will probably not die out any time too soon, and the last to die will more than likely be black and white film. There will still be hard core enthusiasts who will enjoy the medium of black and white film and know that nothing compares with the excitement of developing one's own photographs. For those who wish to learn this art form, Henry Horenstein's BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHY; A BASIC MANUAL is an excellent resource. This book is sued by many instructors as a textbook. It contains excellent information about the basics of photography including camera, lens, shutter and exposure and the developing process. Throughout the book there are many compositional techniques as well as the use of filters to enhance photographs. Though this is a manual for black and white photographers, those interested in color photography will find the boo helpful since understanding eth techniques involved in black and white photography help detect important nuances in color photography that can truly enhance a photograph.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on April 16, 1998
How to attain a picture perfect photography is what you'll find inside this book by Henry Horenstein. You can get essential guidelines from the the right aperture to the correct lenses, from the right kind of light to the matching shutter speed. All of these will help make your black and white pictures turned out simply the best. It also tells you how to make your black and white pictures turn into a colorful image in the eyes of the viewer. It will definitely change the way you look at black and white pictures. Black and white will never be the same again.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2003
A few years ago I did a 1:1 study with a retired fashion photographer who recommended this book. Even though I have been working in b/w for over 30 years I find the book useful. Nice to have all the basic info in one place and this book does that!! As to a lack of "artistic suggestions" in the book...well I have a huge library of texts that were purchased to help me learn the "art" of photogaphy. My retired friend taught me a valuable lesson, learn the technical from a book then shoot, shoot, shoot!! That's about the only way you will learn the "art" of it. I've been asked to teach an intro to b/w photography this summer and this will be the textbook for it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on February 25, 2004
Photography 101 for me was an actual class which I took in 1983. This book is a must-have in my opinion, because it really is Photography 101 in book form, lab not included. The book contains excellent quality black & white drawings and photographs, and the style of writing is in straightforward, plain English. For me it's as useful now as it was then. I'll never get rid of this book.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on May 12, 2003
This book concentrates mostly on the science of black & white photography. It is perfect if you want to get a basic understanding of how a camera works and how to develop film and make your own prints. However, it offers no tips on the artistic aspect of black & white photography -- compostion, moods, emotions, etc.
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