By Shawn Frederick
Alpha Books, $19.95, 210 pages
Digital Photography: Idiot’s Guide is a nicely assembled overview of how digital photography works. Even if readers have been using digital SLR cameras for years, they will begin to understand the key components of digital photography that will help build awareness and lead to more control over the photographic experience. Anyone can snap an iPhone or point-and-shoot. The path, as explained in Digital Photography: Idiot’s Guide is that simple precepts can make the reader a better photographer. The book covers a lot of ground quickly and concisely. Many aspects of digital photography are explained in one or two pages, making the book a quick reference guide as well as a nice, broad overview of the art of digital technology. Concepts such as depth of field and aperture are explained alongside auto-settings.
“You still have to know your camera very well , then apply the basics of photography – such as using light, metering correctly, and knowing the meanong of good composition–to shoot like a pro. Still, it can be done”
Once readers finish this book they will have a firmer understanding of the once mysterious buttons and settings on their camera and find themselves defaulting less and less to the auto-settings. While some of the information may be too advanced for the lay-person, it still offers the opportunity to understand the many factors that influence a successful photograph and perhaps will leave readers with a greater appreciation and understanding of what makes a lovely image besides just the fact that it’s pleasing to look at. The book is full of factual information, given in a tone devoid of snobbery, and offers helpful tips to empower consumers and amateurs to make decisions such as how much to spend on a camera based on their needs and desired outcome. Great photos and lessons show comparisons between different settings. This is a lovely book.
Reviewed by Giovanna Marcus