Top positive review
9 people found this helpful
An excellent read BUT a terrible reference.
on 24 June 2015
I didn't give this five stars, because it didn't entirely suit my purposes. I am about to be going onto a beginners dig-photography course and hoped I could use this as a sort-of 'text book' to help understand the subject. I have never picked up a DSLR camera before, so I was hoping that this would be a good start.
While it provides a lot of information, I wouldn't say that this is a good book if you want a 'text-book/reference' style book. Like, if you want to talk about one aspect of dig-photography, then you can turn to this section etc. I felt as though the book did touch on most photographic subjects, but I prefer a more ordered book. This came across as more of a 'chat between friends' kind of book which I have found in many dummies book (so my fault really.)
It is indeed a 'for dummies' book, but I should have bought one specifically for dslr photography, and not just a generic 'digital photography' book, as I found a lot of the content was geared towards camera users who wanted to use automatic modes on their cameras (and not always want to set things like aperture, ISO and shutter speed, manually.) Unfortunately for me, this meant I had to skip through pages and pages of material, to reach sections about using fully 'manual' mode. It felt bad having 1cm chunks of pages in this book unread and not fit for my purposes. Therefore, I wouldn't recommend this for beginner students of photography who want an entry-level book. This is more of a 'So, you've never picked up ANY digital camera before' type of book, which assumes you'll probably want to use the types of settings that colleges and places of learning do not recommend (Example: Fully automatic/semi automatic modes.)
On the plus-side, this book does seem to recommend that users choose from a DSLR or compact systems camera. This is a good thing, as some very entry-level digital photography books, might be afraid to do this, and focus instead on getting the best from a point-and-shoot compact camera.
I am giving this book 4 stars, as it is a really comprehensive book on digital photography, but with one caveat: If you are a student, like me, who has never studied digital photography before, then this book might be a little too disorganised, with too much focus on amateur/consumer features on digital cameras (whole sections), and this means there is more limited content on the types of knowledge that you might want to know.
So it IS an excellent guide for anyone who is completely new to digital photography, but I'd say it's not the best reference/textbook out there. I recently bought a book called 'DSLR in Easy Steps' and if you compare the layout/content, it's very different. The pages are also presented differently, with much more simplicity in the DSLR Easy Steps book, whereas I find the dummies books have pages that are more jumbled, where you have to dig-around to find the information you need. Then on top of this, there is a lot of 'chat' in dummies book. I'm not quoting exactly, but phrases like "Between you and me, setting 'x' is best, but here's a picture of my Daughter and doesn't setting 'y' look superb, really highlighting the bow in her hair." I usually like this sort of 'informal' dialogue, but it's a pain when I was trying to learn the basics of photography from this book, and had to 'read between the lines' of this sort of dialogue to actually find the technical point the author was trying to make.
So I'm not saying this is a bad digital photography book, on the contrary, its very thorough. But please look elsewhere if you're looking for something that is concise and too the point, without too much 'rambling' and that focuses on the kinds of camera-modes you will need to learn for photography courses.