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Digital Photography Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools [Paperback]

by Derrick Story
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 2004 0596006667 978-0596006662

Your digital camera is more than new incarnation of your old film camera. Yes, it still produces photos, but it also offers new outlets for creativity, including instant gratification of seeing your photos now, the ability to experiment without worrying about expense, the technology to fine-tune your photos with advanced professional techniques, and the means to share your work instantaneously with anyone, anyplace in the world. It's no wonder that digital cameras are outselling traditional cameras for the first time ever. But the question most digital camera users ask is this, "How do I get from taking 'decent' photos to doing the things I'd really like to do? How do I tap into that potential?"

Digital Photography Hacks is your passport to taking the kind of digital photos you've always aspired to. Written by Derrick Story, photographer and author of Digital Photography Pocket Guide and other books, it goes beyond the standard fare of most digital photography books--such as camera basics, understanding memory cards, and when to use a flash--to the things that professional photographers have learned through thousands of shots' worth of experience, years of experimentation, and fiddling and hacking. The book includes a foreword by photographer Rick Smolan, author of America 24/7.

With exquisite, full-color photos throughout, the book presents a collection of tips, tricks, and techniques for photographers ready to move beyond the basics. And if you don't have the latest in digital camera photography, this book will show you how to extend the life and functionality of your existing camera. All the hacks in the book are platform-agnostic, designed for use on both Mac on Windows-based computers. You'll find 100 proven techniques in the areas of:

  • Daytime and nighttime photo secrets
  • Flash magic
  • Digital camera attachments
  • The computer connection
  • Photoshop magic
  • Fun photo projects
  • Camera phone tricks
This book is for the photographer you are now, and the one you want to be. Digital Photography Hacks is for the creative adventurer who resides in each of us.

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Digital Photography Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools + Podcasting 101 for Training and Development: Challenges, Opportunities, and Solutions + Digital Art: Its Arts and Science
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Derrick has been interested in photography since age 11, and a computer nut for decades. He's been waiting for years for these two passions to converge, and now that they have, it's everything he thought it would be. Managing editor of O'Reilly Network, Derrick focuses on Web authoring, digital media, and mobile computing. Favorite projects include O'Reilly DevCenters for Web Development and for the Mac. Derrick's experience includes more than 15 years as a photojournalist, a stint as the managing editor for Web Review, and a speaker for CMP's Web conferences. He is the coauthor of iPhoto 2: The Missing Manual and author of the Digital Photography and Digital Video Pocket Guides. Derrick also manages his online photo business, Story Photography.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 332 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media (May 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596006667
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596006662
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,547,126 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Derrick Story is a photographer, writer, and teacher. He's authored many books including the "The Digital Photography Companion" and "The Digital Photography Pocket Guide." Derrick's video tutorials are available through lynda.com, featuring Aperture, iPhoto, and general photography titles. His photo articles are a regular staple for Macworld Magazine and TechHive.

Derrick runs a virtual camera club at www.thedigitalstory.com, featuring weekly photography podcasts, reader-submitted photos, reviews, and pro tips.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Some cool and unusual ideas... May 22, 2004
Format:Paperback
Are you a digital photographer who is always looking to try something different or learn a new technique for your shooting? If so, you'll like Digital Photography Hacks by Derrick Story (O'Reilly). Like all Hacks titles, the book is made up of 100 ideas or techniques that you can use to do something different or unusual. The hacks fall into the following chapter areas:
Digital Camera Attachments; Daytime Photo Secrets; Nighttime Photo Hacks; Magic With Flash; The Computer Connection; Photoshop Magic; Camera-Phone Tricks; Weekend Photo Projects
The thing I like most about the Hacks series is that if you don't like or can't use one tip, the next one may be exactly what you have been searching for. And this book is no different. To get the absolute most out of the material, you should have a digital SLR or a high-end digital camera that gives you a wide range of control over shutter speeds and aperture settings. You should also have a copy of Photoshop CS, as that tool will allow you to do everything in the PS hacks chapter. But even if you only have a good consumer level digital camera, you'll be able to try out some tricks you may never have thought about.
I particularly enjoyed the hacks on nighttime photography and panoramic techniques. I've always loved the vividness and colors of great night scenes, and there are some great ideas on how to capture those elements. There are also some cool tips for using longer shutter speeds to get light movement effects, such as head and tail lights of cars. As for panoramic photography, I've seen it but never knew how it was done. This book shows you how it works and how best to line up your shots for that type of shooting.
Very good book, great ideas, and you'll enjoy looking at your photography in new and unusual ways.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Photography Reference May 18, 2004
Format:Paperback
Photography, as much as it has changed in the past decade thanks to the advance of digital cameras and methods, remains the same fundamentally as it has for close to 100 years. The perfect shot consists of a number of factors including subject, background, angle, lighting, lense and exposure. Granted, digital cameras let us perfect the formula almost immediately, and that is where this book comes into play.
One would argue that the book could be used by both a digital photographer and a traditional film photographer. The author described techniques that could really be applied to any photographer regardless of camera type -- for instance, how to mount a camera to get the perfect "stable" image at the correct angle. Many of the tips focus on the technique behind photography and how to set-up the perfect shot -- all before you hit the button.
Overall, the book provides a good reference for the hobbyist who does not have the mega-expensive camera or setup. The author shows how to take pictures that rival many professionals without spending a fortune. I learnt a lot about when to use a flash, and when to use diffused lighting -- again, something that could be carried over to the traditional film world. By just applying these tips I immediately noticed that pictures I took indoors took on a new life; and looked a whole lot better.
If you are looking for a book that strictly focuses on digital cameras and how to hack them, this book is not for you. If you are one of the hundreds of thousands of 'new' hobbyist photographers that the digital camera revolution has created and want to improve your technique and your shots then this book is a terrific resource manual to learn the tricks of the trade.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great resource for the amateur photographer June 28, 2004
Format:Paperback
"Hacking" has a different meaning to the photographer than it does in the computer world. This book is about hacks the way it is used in the world of photography and not the way it is used in the world of computers. When a picture doesn't come out quite like a photographer intended they often make changes in the darkroom via masks, burning, and other techniques. This is photographic "hacking" - enhancing and changing your digital photographs in ways you may not have thought possible to achieve the results you want.
The first chapter focuses on digital camera attachments and how to use them to produce better results. From there the author leads the reader into various techniques of outside photography, nighttime photography, and flash techniques. Once you understand how to get the best picture it is time to change it into a work of art. For this process the author discusses the magic of Photoshop and how it can be used to achieve almost any effect you can imagine.
This is a book for the amateur digital camera user who wants to create a professional looking result. If you are an advanced Photoshop user the part of the book about camera use could be helpful but the Photoshop portion doesn't cover even a tenth of what Photoshop is able to do.
"Digital Photography Hacks" is highly recommended for the amateur digital photographer and anyone else interested in creating photographs instead of taking pictures.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tips for the serious amateur July 6, 2004
Format:Paperback
"Digital Photography Hacks" can be viewed as a supplement to the author's 2003 book, "Digital Photography Pocket Guide". While "Pocket Guide" is a basic introduction to digital photography, "Hacks" is a collection of real-world tips and solutions to everyday problems encountered by digital photographers. It is another addition to the growing set of "Hacks" books published by O'Reilly Media.
The 100 tips and tools are organized into 8 chapters covering camera attachments, daytime and nighttime photo secrets, flash photography, photo projects, computer-based photo processing and organizing, and a special section on camera-phone photography. A number of hacks cover traditional photographic techniques not new to digital photography but useful to any photographer who wants to improve one or two steps above mere snapshooting. The bulk of them, however, relate specifically to the new digital photography world. The most interesting are those pertaining to camera-phones which have outsold regular digital cameras in 2002. The author demonstrates how to get the best use out of camera-phones despite their limitations in resolution, power, and features. Hack #75 explains that the prime value of camera-phones is in their immediacy allowing unique opportunities to obtain images. This hack reinterprets the traditional photography maxim that the "best camera" is the one you have in your hand when a special event is occurring.
Hack #79 cleverly shows how one can communicate in a foreign country by displaying pre-loaded images in your camera to the natives in lieu of learning and speaking a foreign language. Everyone will understand the meaning of the photos. Load up your disk with images of toilets, taxi cabs, and cheeseburgers!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Digital Camera Tips
I read through this book in one sitting. Some of the "Hacks" seem a little aged but the overall quality of information is great. The "Hacks" are quick and easy to understand. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Nathan Maas
3.0 out of 5 stars Be prepared to spend money to take advantage of hacks
Weaknesses: A surprisingly large percentage of the hacks require you to spend money on devices or software. Read more
Published on August 18, 2007 by Israel Ramirez
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, Very Clever Ideas
I was very pleasantly surprised to finally get a book on digital photography that was page after page, completely full of all new ideas! The title says it all. Read more
Published on March 25, 2007 by Frank Segler
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful Hacks for you digital camera
Digital Photography Hacks is a part of O'reilly's hacks series, which provide tricks and solutions for different fields. Read more
Published on January 14, 2006 by Rafiq Elmansy
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful Tips, But Lots of Tips are Neither Hacks nor...
I am an amateur photographer and I did learn a number of useful things from this book. However, I am rating it a 3, primarily because it contains few information on what I really... Read more
Published on January 13, 2006 by W. Ng
4.0 out of 5 stars Neat Little Photo Book
Be prepared, this book has no real theme. It is a hodgepodge of interesting stuff. The photoshop section is very good, which is surprising, as that is not the focus of the book. Read more
Published on November 7, 2005 by jane thompson
5.0 out of 5 stars Gilya "digital hobbiest" , Boston, MA, USA
Excellent book, a lot of useful information. Very worth my money.
Published on September 27, 2005 by GILYA
4.0 out of 5 stars Awsome book
The only reason I didn't give the book 5 stars was the section on photoshop...I don't have it (not yet anyway) and would've liked more genera info. Read more
Published on June 11, 2005 by L. Dougherty
5.0 out of 5 stars Digital Photography Hacks
This book is not a reading book, nor is this book a picture book. However, this book is an amazing collection of organized tips and tricks for the digital photographer; from... Read more
Published on April 20, 2005 by Gregory West
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Photo Reference
Digital Photography Hacks is a great book for the aspiring, or amateur photographer looking to flesh out their photographic bag of tricks. Read more
Published on April 9, 2005 by Gabriel Guzman
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