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Bryan Peterson's Understanding Photography Field Guide Paperback – 2 Jun 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Amphoto; Original edition (2 Jun. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0817432256
  • ISBN-13: 978-0817432256
  • Product Dimensions: 15 x 2.1 x 22.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 87,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

BRYAN PETERSON is a professional photographer, internationally known instructor, and founder of www.ppsop.com, The Perfect Picture School of Photography. He is the best-selling author of Understanding Exposure, Understanding Shutter Speed, Understanding Close-Up Photography, Learning to See Creatively Understanding Digital Photography, Beyond Portraiture and, most recently, Bryan Peterson's Understanding Photography Field Guide. His easy-to-understand writing and teaching style breaks down the complex and often confusing aspects of photography, translating them into what his students routinely describe as "aha" moments. His trademark use of colour and strong, graphic composition have garnered him many photographic awards and a strong following. He lives in Chicago.

Product Description

About the Author

Bryan Peterson is a professional photographer, an internationally known instructor and the best-selling author. In addition he is the founder of the online photography school The Perfect Picture School of Photography (www.ppsop.com). He lives in Chicago, Illinois.


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By ian russell on 15 Aug. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a compact handbook written for the improving amateur photographer who wants to use the manual setting on their camera, and understand better control of the photo making process.

The things that appeal to me about this book are;

its size. It's compact enough for travelling with but not too small for showing off images. I have a few manuals already, and have read a few more, but they've all been a larger format. This one is much more practical for carrying around, with my camera, taking on holiday, in a backpack or hand luggage, and also, I imagine, being easier to read while in transit.

the photos. Despite the size, the images don't seem to suffer much comprise. Mostly they are well-chosen examples illustrating each point covered. Many, in my view, are outstanding and inspirational.

the writing style. Different but, after I settled into it, I find his words engaging and very readable. I first came across one of the his books by chance in the library; Understanding Exposure. Having used a camera for several years, and feeling I'd become uninspired, and fed-up with photoshopping - a better understanding of exposure seemed to be what was needed. I'd not heard of Bryan Peterson before so reading his words for the first time was a bit of a culture shock, he doesn't write like any other photographer-author I'd read. It's a very informal style, almost conversational. It didn't sound like the dry, often boring, report-like statements I'd found in every other camera book I'd read. He cuts out the dreary science-speak and gives you what you really wanted to know - simply, what to do and why. In addition to the explanations, there are occasionally suggested ''exercises'' to help with understanding and/or to help with inspiration.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Avid Reader on 18 Oct. 2009
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I ordered this book because I had just bought a digital camera that gave me full manual control (the excellent Panasonic lx3). I had been very interested in film photography but had not really seriously thought about digital photography. I wanted something to read that reminded me of the basics of photography and that would help me work out how to use my new digital camera more effectively.
How well does this book meet those expectations? Well I certainly learnt a lot from the book particularly the section on exposure which I understand is very similar to the that in the author's Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs with a Film or Digital Camera. The other sections are also said to be taken from other books he has written, there is certainly nothing wrong with this and the book represents good value. I found the content easy to understand, the book is printed on nice paper and well laid out with informative photographs and the style is informal and good humoured.
However as others have pointed out the author originally wrote his books for film cameras. A good editor would have been able to see this and advise on revisions. Two examples where this detracts from the books appeal, again mentioned with regard to Understanding Exposure, are the lack of comprehensive discussion about white balance and the dismisal of the histogram as being overated with no further mention of it. As someone comparatively new to digital photography I can understand the author's attitude to these issuess however in order to make up my own mind I would have like the information that would have enabled me to do so. In the end I had to glean this for myself mostly from the web.
All in all I'm glad I bought this book and it has a place on my bookshelf, with a little bit more thought it could have been much better.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mais78 on 7 Jun. 2010
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I bought/cheked other books, including the ones of Scott Kelby, and this is by far the best. It gives you a solid theoretical base (without being boring) and tons of useful tips, always in a concise and straight to the point manner.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jaz on 17 July 2011
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I took up photography again about four years ago after a long break, so changing to a DSLR camera via film and compact camera and then recently upgrading my DSLR. I had reached a point where my images were good enough for local camera clubs but I was finding it hard to progress without getting the results I wanted all the time.

This book along with a few others have helped enormously. It is very easy to read and understand and is written in bite sized chunks, perfect to read digest and put into action.
I have been surprised to find that part of my problems were due to the fact that since using digital I have not ever before fully understood the exposure triangle and its effect on depth of field, movement, sharpness etc. this has been very easy to take in properly in this book.
I think perhaps some reviewers have been misled by the words Field Guide, as I said it is written in bite sized chunks so very easy to put into practice after reading a small section at home before moving on to the next.

It is probably aimed at the photographer who is used to their camera and wants to move on and recap some of the fairly basic manual functions, why they use them and the results they can achieve.

The author offers lots of useful hints along the way.

I have not finished reading this guide yet as it is so easy to pick up, then practice before returning to it and moving on to something else.
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