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Posing and Lighting Techniques for Studio Portrait Photography Paperback – September 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Amherst Media (September 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158428031X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1584280316
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,457,511 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

J. J. Allen is a professional photographer with more than 50 years of experience, as well as a writer for "Rangefinder" magazine. He lives in Hapeville, Georgia.

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Customer Reviews

I found this book extremely helpful.
D.J.
Stunning photos, excellent lighting diagrams, and clear text.
Paul Ferrara
This recently published (9/00) book is the best.
Daniel O'Bryan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

48 of 49 people found the following review helpful By CLT on January 24, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Perhaps it is my own fault that I didn't read the book title carefully. The book was indeed on "Studio" photography. I was hoping to get some more general expert insights on lighting and posing. Instead, I was overwhelmed with suggestion about what kind of equipments to buy. The author assume that you are a professional photographer, who owns a studio, a medium format camera, and $10k+ for some lighting equipments. If you are such photographer, you might like this book. For me, I was lucky enough to own a 35mm SLR and a decent flash. This is not a bad book and the presentation is very personal, but this book is not for me. If you are like me, who just want to improve your chances of getting good pictures of your families and friends, try ISBN 1584280344 instead.
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Tim Witort on January 8, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Allen's book on studio lighting and posing is generally a good overall study of techniques and recommendations. The book is aimed toward the professional photographer or the experienced amateur. There are fine examples and detailed instructions on metering multi-light setups. The posing information is less useful, but is still well thought out.
A significant flaw in the book is the editing. There are several mistakes with sample photos - photos mislabeled and some photos mistakenly shown multiple times rather than the photos that the text refers to. This will leave some people who have not done much studio work scratching their heads when their tests look nothing like the examples in the book. Fortunately, most of the samples are correct and the errors are fairly obvious as long as the reader is paying close attention.
Another drawback are the lighting diagrams. They are so far from being "to scale" that their usefulness is greatly reduced.
And lastly, there are many many cases where the author goes into great detail describing equipment and techniques that would have been much, much better done with a simple accompanying photograph of the apparatus. Basically the only photos in the book are the portraits (most of them quite nice), but almost every chapter is just begging for some small photos of the equipment being talked about.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Daniel O'Bryan on October 21, 2000
Format: Paperback
Being new to studio portrait photography, I have bought or read almost every book on the subject. This recently published (9/00) book is the best. Although beginners would benefit most from this book, there is information for the experienced.The book starts with basics in film and equipment and then covers every phase of posing and lighting with diagrams and examples to explain. Most of the example photo's are color, but those in black & white are of salon quality. No better written book available.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By D.J. on April 2, 2001
Format: Paperback
I found this book extremely helpful. I am a beginner in studio portraiture. Allen helps you understand all of the elements that come in to play when making images of people under studio conditions. He discusses everything from light meters to posing stools to the psychology of portraiture. I recomend this book to anyone who is trying to shed some light (sorry:)) on portraite photography.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Paul Ferrara on March 12, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one great book! Stunning photos, excellent lighting diagrams, and clear text. Mr. Allen focuses (a pun, huh? [g]) on creating striking images of everyday subjects using equipment that's available and affordable. No trick lighting or elaborate backgrounds are required. He covers all the basics on posing styles and lighting types. My portraits have improved by orders of magnitude already and I continue to gain knowledge with each rereading.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By David Brugge on September 13, 2004
Format: Paperback
It is obvious from this book that J.J.Allen has a wealth of experience as a successful portrait photographer.

Unfortunately, this does not translate into being a good instructor.

While Mr. Allen clearly knows his stuff, his lessons are wordy, incomplete, and not well thought out. The portraits used to illustrate a point seem to be mostly chosen from his file cabinet rather than shot to illustrate that point. In some instances, examinations of the portraits reveal themselves to be shot in a method other than what is described.

Most of the fault, however, lies with the publisher, Amherst Media. The lighting diagrams are completely out of scale and sometimes wrong.

It is exhaustive to try and match, for instance, such elements as Image 22 and Image 23 with Diagram 11 and Diagram 12 on pages with no numbers with the accompanying text on pages 36 and 37.

On the good side is a wealth of excellent portraits in a plethora of styles and methods and a few true nuggets of solid advise that will be truly useful to the aspiring portrait photographer.

All in all, it is not a BAD book, it is just that for the money, there are many that are a lot better.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 25, 2004
Format: Paperback
I have spent a lot of time trying to find books that would help me improve my skills in portrait photography. I would buy a book thinking it would answer my questions on technique, and the type of equiptment used, etc., only to be disapointed in the generalness of the information. Finally I have found a book that is specific enough to learn something solid.
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