The Digital Photography Book, Volume 1
The Digital Photography Book, Volume 2
The Digital Photography Book, Volume 3
by Scott Kelby (Peachpit Press)
I enjoy taking photographs. There really is something to that old phrase that a picture is worth a thousand words. But sometimes, maybe often, you take one that is only worth 500...and you want to figure out how to ramp that number up.
One thing I really like about these books are the format. Not page after page of dry technical data, but rather each page being one clear and practical explanation of one particular issue. As Kelby describes the approach...
"If you and I were out on a shoot, and you asked me, 'Hey, how do I get this flower to be in focus, but I want the background out of focus?' I wouldn't stand there and give you a lecture about aperture, exposure, and depth of field. In real life, I'd just say, 'Get out your telephoto lens, set your f/stop to f/2.8, focus on the flower, and fire away.' You would say, 'OK,' and you'd get the shot. That's what this book is all about. A book of you and I shooting, and I answer the questions, give you advice and share the secrets I've learned just like I would with a friend, without all the technical explanations and without all the techno-photo-speak."Each of the three books contains over 200 of his "tricks of the trade", a good amount of information about different cameras and lens and filters and all sort of equipment..or as I like to think of them, "toys", and a great deal of practical advice and new ideas you will want to try out. A beginner or more advanced 'shooter' will both, without question, find a great deal of useful information in each volume, all presented in a very attractive and non-intimidating way..with a fair bit of humor. While he often give a good explanation of the theory behind a technique, the emphasis is on the practical, how to do a certain thing or get a certain effect.
While anyone interested in photography might be tempted to just go out and get the first volume, and that is a great book, I would really recommend you get all three nice paperbacks. This very nice boxed set would be something I would strongly recommend to anyone hoping to improve their picture taking skills.