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Understanding Exposure, 3rd Edition

Understanding Exposure, 3rd Edition [Kindle Edition]

Bryan Peterson
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (156 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £19.99
Kindle Price: £9.46 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Product Description

Product Description

With more than 350,000 copies sold, Understanding Exposure has demystified the complex concepts of exposure for countless photographers. Now updated with current technologies, more than one hundred new images, and an all-new chapter, this new edition will inspire you more than ever to free yourself from “auto” and create the pictures you truly want.

In his trademark easy-to-understand style, author Bryan Peterson explains the relationship between aperture and shutter speed, including how to achieve successful exposures in seemingly difficult situations. You’ll learn:

• Which aperture gives you the greatest contrast and sharpness, and when to use it 
• Which apertures guarantee the background remains an out-of-focus tone 
• Which one aperture—when combined with the right lens—creates an area of sharpness from three feet to infinity 
• How to creatively use shutter speed to either freeze an action or imply motion 
• Where to take a meter reading when shooting a sunset, snow, or a city at dusk


With new information on white balance, flash, HDR, and more, this updated classic will inspire you to stop guessing and take control of your settings for better photos anytime, anywhere, and with any camera.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

Bryan Peterson is a phenomenon in how-to photography and has sold more than half a million books. A professional photographer and internationally known instructor, he is the author of Learning to See Creatively, Understanding Digital Photography, Beyond Portraiture, among others. He is also the founder of the online photography school The Perfect Picture School of Photography (

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 33296 KB
  • Print Length: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Amphoto Books; 3rd edition (21 Dec 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004FEFS5E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (156 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #16,616 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

BRYAN PETERSON is a professional photographer, internationally known instructor, and founder of, 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.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
131 of 132 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This knowledge will improve your photos 21 Sep 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
You can break down good photos into two aspects - the composition and the exposure. This is the best book I have read that covers the exposure. For composition, I highly recommend Michael Freeman's "The Photographers Eye". That book did more to improve my photos than anything I've read in the last 3 years.

Back to this book. So, you've learnt how to compose the photo. You need to understand how to capture what you see, or to create something from what you see. This book works through the photographic triangle of aperture, shutter speed and ISO in clear language. The best thing is that every picture has the settings that the author has used. It is so frustrating that most other books don't do that. Sure, by experimentation you can learn the ideal settings yourself. But in my view you, armed with the knowledge of how the author achieves his effects (eg creamy waterfalls) helps put you in the right ball park for the settings while you are learning, which means you shouldn't be making basic mistakes while taking photos of stuff you really want to capture. Which, let's face it, is why we are taking the photos in the first place. The book encourages you to move away from using the auto settings and be more in control of the shot and acheive better outcomes.

I also have Michael Freeman's "Perfect Exposure". That is a significantly more technical book, going into details of dynamic ranges, histograms etc. In itself, it is an excellent book, but I'd recommend Peterson's book as a first step.
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51 of 52 people found the following review helpful
By Alan
I have recently purchased this book, and although I have read some good reviews of it, I had my reservations. I thought to myself, here is yet another photography book with loads of information that will only overwhelm a potential photography beginner. I am happy to say I was completely wrong.

Understanding Exposure is a book written specifically to suit beginner photography level, and to explain the mechanics of photo taking process (exposure), in a simple, non-threatening way. Digital Photography at this day and age is very much technical, and given the amount of books, websites and other tutorials, both in writing and on the web can be very confusing and frustrating for a photography beginner. Therefore it is easy to forget the basics of photography, which are quite simple, and this is where Understanding Exposure book stands out above the rest. It keeps things simple. Many technical aspects such as aperture, shutter speed, and ISO are simplified to the level that anyone can understand. I have especially liked the concept of "who cares" aperture (f/8.0 and f/11).

Bryan also encourages the reader to take control of his/her digital camera by using Manual recording mode, which at first seems to be a little backwards when comparing to what are most of the photography magazines suggesting, but it makes perfect sense. By consciously selecting aperture and shutter speed, and keeping track of camera's suggested settings for these parameters, the reader actively takes part in understanding exposure and how it works, which is the point of the book. Getting more consistent photo results than using automatic or semi-automatic recording modes (such as aperture priority, or shutter priority) is just a cherry on top.
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As an enthusiast who wants to improve and move into more full manual control of my camera, I had been frustrated - until I picked up this book. It very usefully steps you through all the key components of creating exposure and also takes you beyond 'technically proper' exposures into 'creating' images. What I liked best was that it would demonstrate the point being made, and then explain to you how to demonstrate it to yourself (sitting there with camera in hand). Very inspiring and I feel much more confident!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Learn to become the captain..... 30 Dec 2010
By Sub
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I rarely write reviews. I only do for things that inspire me and show me a step change from the norm. I started out with digital SLR seriously from about a year ago and have been reading up numerous informative guides/articles online to try and improve my skills. But this is the first 'photography' book that I ever purchased and I should say it is worth all the feedback. I learnt about composition etc. via Ken Rockwell and never bothered to go into Manual mode thinking I will lose all the photo-ops while wasting time twiddling the dials! Was I wrong though! I recently shot numerous indoor photos at a christmas gathering of constantly in the move kids (which means I needed to be quick) ,in dull tungsten light, all in Manual mode, following the tips and advice given in this book. I must say, great exposure everytime with atleast 95% of the snaps exactly as I wanted them to be. Once you truly understand exposure and how the camera's light meter works (it will obviously take practice and getting out to put the teachings in the book to practice before you can truly master the techniques)it doesn't really matter which mode you are in, including the dreaded 'M'! Thanks to this book I truly undertand what's happening with the light and how my camera really sees the picture. It has most definitely added substantial depth to my creative control over the pictures before I press the shutter and expect results as I intended. This book has given me foresight (understanding what to expect) rather than hindsight (looking at the feedback from the display after pressing the shutter and then applying corrections). I will whole-heartedly recommend this book to anyone who has some understanding of their camera and photography, now wanting to get into the driver's seat. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
Published 16 hours ago by BAR TON
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 4 days ago by M. Mc Grath
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended book on photography
The best photography books I ever read. Most of the books starts with choosing camera, lens blah blah. Read more
Published 5 days ago by Vel murugan
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book for all who are starting photography.
Published 12 days ago by Igor
5.0 out of 5 stars Filled in the missing pieces of the jigsaw, the ...
Filled in the missing pieces of the jigsaw, the picture is now complete, and now able to improve my skills and photographs.
Published 13 days ago by H.G.Millichip
5.0 out of 5 stars Best and Simple
I learnt DSLR photography from this book. Excellent for beginners - easy and simple. BRYAN is amazing!! I watched some of his videos in you tube.
Published 1 month ago by manas nayak
5.0 out of 5 stars wow..
Literally blew my mind, I completely understand metering and exposure now. Everything is well explained and really fun to read. I completely love this book!
Published 1 month ago by Jean van Wyngaardt
5.0 out of 5 stars Bryan Peterson is the best.
Well, he is in my opinion. So easy to learn from and this is my go back to book. What with Bryan's books and his youtube tutorials, i now see the world in a different light. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Faultlessphelps
5.0 out of 5 stars The photographers bible.
I recently got back into photography. I did have the previous edition of the book but it was borrowed and well thats another story. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Al_Mc72
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect!
I bought this book for my boyfriend and he looooves it. It is very concise and doesn't waste space with useless words. Read more
Published 3 months ago by h
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Popular Highlights

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Small apertures (f/16, f/22, and f/32) are the creative force behind what I call storytelling exposures &quote;
Highlighted by 499 Kindle users
Large apertures (f/2.8, f/4, and f/5.6) are the creative force behind what I call singular-theme or isolation exposures (option 2)—images that show shallow depth of field. The middle-of-the-road apertures (f/8 and f/11) are what I call “Who cares?” exposures (option 3)—those in which depth of field is of no concern. &quote;
Highlighted by 388 Kindle users
And f/11 is considered a critical aperture, meaning that optical sharpness reigns supreme at this setting. &quote;
Highlighted by 351 Kindle users

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