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How to Create Stunning Digital Photography Paperback – December 1, 2012
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"I'm the founder of photo.net (started in 1993), so I've seen a lot of photography tutorials. This might be my favorite so far in terms of density of practical information...A very functional book designed for busy people." --Philip Greenspun "Amazon"
About the Author
Award-winning author and photographer Tony Northrup has published more than 30 how-to books and sold more than a million copies around the world. His photos have been featured on magazine covers, book covers, CD covers, TV shows, calendars, and much more. Tony studied photography at the New England School of Photography and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. He runs a stock and portrait photography business with his family, Chelsea and Madelyn, out of his home studio in Waterford, CT. He shoots travel and nature photography everywhere he goes.
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Top customer reviews
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I would highly recommend the book to anyone starting out in photography, very very useful.
Since I am a gear-head that is prone to over-purchasing tech, some of Tony's advice has saved me from buying items that were technically not necessary for my skill level.
As teachers, the Northrups seem to be a very "down to earth" couple - challenging many of the long standing photography standards. They provide sound, practical logic so that average people may obtain high-quality photographic results. They use easy-to-understand language, and they reference many good internet resources to help enhance your learning experience.
Finally, they do this for a living, so their opinions and approaches hold a lot of credibility with me. There are a few online personalities that are critical of some of their opinions - some downright attacking them. I am not at a level where I can confirm or debunk their critics assertions. I can "judge a tree by the fruit that it bears". My observation is that the Northrups produce a lot of high-quality content; they have a lot of customers; and many people on the web are tuning in to them. They must be doing something right.
Tony and his wife, Chelsea, also an excellent photographer, have created an outstanding learning tool for budding (and intermediate) photographers.
This book covers a huge spectrum of photography with the first chapter introducing 6 "quick tips" that get you started on a wonderful journey of discovery. My favorite tip from the first chapter is to take LOTS of photos and delete most of them. With the advent of digital photography, you no longer have to wait for film to be developed to see your results. And digital "film" is free so do lots of experimenting to really learn the ins and outs of your camera.
The next four chapters cover composition, lighting and flash, controlling your camera (this chapter alone is worth the price of the book!), and problem-solving which covers a wide variety of techniques to solve those problems.
The rest of the book dedicates a whole chapter to each of the following subjects: Portraits, Weddings, Animals, Landscapes, Night Photography (including star trails!), High Dynamic Range (HDR), Closeup/Macro Photography and finally Underwater photography.
What really makes this a stand-out learning experience is the included links to hours and hours of high-quality video that demonstrates the subject at hand. These videos average about 5-6 minutes but can be as long as 30 minutes when covering a more complex subject. The book is designed to accommodate different styles of learning so you can read the book then watch the included videos as you read or you can go to Appendix A which is an index for every video so you can watch all the videos and use the book as a reference.
At the end of each chapter is a quiz to test your understanding of the subject. Each chapter also includes a series of suggested mini-projects or challenges for you to get hands-on experience with the subject.
Tony and Chelsea are very down-to-earth and their style is not cold and sterile but very engaging and fun. They go all over the world with a professional videographer and demonstrate techniques that really gives you an in-depth understanding of the topic. They joke and kid around with you and each other which makes them more engaging and fun to watch while you are learning.
While they also have a dedicated book for camera gear, Tony Northrup's Photography Buying Guide: How to Choose a Camera, Lens, Tripod, Flash, & More (Tony Northrup's Photography Books Book 2), there are lots of tips and gear recommendations peppered throughout the book. They will tell you when it is fine to purchase a cheaper, generic piece of gear and when it is better to stick with name-brand equipment. They demonstrate how to get the best quality photos from budget gear and they also encourage you to find used gear. One of the lenses they discussed costs about $1300 new. But they showed me how to find the same lens "like new" that I purchased for $800!
I was so impressed with this book that I also purchased their books Adobe Lightroom 6 / CC Video Book: Training for Photographers and Photoshop CC Essentials for Photographers: Chelsea & Tony Northrup's Video Book.
Also they do video tutorials for just about every popular camera out there on their website (you will find their website with each link in the book). Each video is ~ 1 hour per camera and covers just about every knob, setting for that camera. Excellent! Their tutorials are far superior to the manual from the camera manufacturer.
If you are new to photography or an intermediate level photographer, this book is a no-brainer. This book demonstrates how technology really can make a book better.