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Mastering the Olympus Om-d E-M5 Mark II Paperback – 22 Oct 2015
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About the Author
Darrell Young (aka Digital Darrell) is a full-time author and professional photographer in the East Tennessee, USA area. He is a member of Professional Photographers of America, the North American Nature Photography Association, and Nikon Professional Services--and adheres to the ethical guidelines of those fine organizations. Darrell has been photographing people, events, and places professionally for over 30 years, with a special interest in natural history. His mother gave him a Brownie Hawkeye camera in 1968 at the young age of 10 years and awakened a lifelong interest in capturing slices of time. Living in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains--near Great Smoky Mountains and the Blue Ridge Parkway--has given him a real concern for the natural environment and a deep interest in nature photography. You'll often find Darrell standing behind a tripod in the beautiful mountains of Tennessee and North Carolina. Since about 2000 Darrell has been an active blogger and article writer on photographic subjects. In 2008 his first photography book was published and, since then, he has authored over a dozen books on the technical side of photography, with a special interest in helping new photographers fully understand their complex cameras so they can use them for more effective and enjoyable photography.
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This is partly as the OM-D E-M5ii has a complicated user interface, but it's also testament to the usefulness of the book. The thing I really appreciate about this book is how it is clearly written by an enthusiastric photographer with enthusiastic photographers in mind. The printing is clear and high quality-paper is used, not the fragile rough "paperback" paper that is being used increasingly in budget reference books. Also appreciate is the fact that there's no fat in this book to be skimmed through, no tedious mini-autobiography from the author shoe-horned into the opening chapter. After some very detailed control location reference pages, page 9 appears.
Page 9 is a key page in the book, as it lists the most critical functions for immediate configuration, and encourages you to work your way down the list, jumping to the relevant part of the book to be taught about the effect and setting each function so you can then set it as you feel appropriate. This function index page works excellently and allowed me to quickly set up the basics for my camera before I'd got halfway down. (For example the default JPEG compression setting is "fine", not "super-fine" as I wanted. Try finding that setting without a guide!)
I can't oversell this function index as a positive feature of the book, it transforms the usefulness of the book and transforms what could have been a detail-heavy nightmare of a book into what can best be described as a book with Google built in.
If I were an Olympus big-wig, I'd be approaching Darrell Young as a consultant for a much-needed overhaul of the Olympus menu layout. Failing that I'd be providing a copy of the book with each sale of the OM-D E-M5ii. Unreservedly recommended.
Referring to navigation of the book eg Page 9 listing various sections of the book, although an excellent idea, is fiddly and cumbersome.
The stamp size images through out the book are too small and I personally need a magnifying glass to view these.
It is my opinion that the books weight is diametrically opposite the beautifull Olympus OMD É-5 Mark 11 camera, which is compact and lightweight producing beautiful images using at times featherlight lenses.
I have immediately downloaded the digital version of the book whereby I can, for example, navigate to a page and back to the original with two taps, likewise the digital images can be stretched to view easily, no magnifying glass needed!
I am now happily reading the digital version of the book on my iPad which is good news for the publishers and Authors but bad news for me that I initially made the wrong decision re purchasing the paperback version.
I hope these observations will be helpful to some future purchasers of the book which will avoid them paying twice for it.
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