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Fantastic Guides on Taking Better Pictures

My favourite books with tips on digital photography

I have no doubt whatsoever that I've been taking better pictures as a result of reading these two books.

The Digital Photography Book makes learning easy with accessible, basic photography tips that will stand you in good stead for all situations.

Meanwhile the The Photographer's Eye is a fascinating guide to composition in photography, which helps focus your mind on the qualities of a good image.


The Digital Photography Book, Vol. 1, by Scott Kelby


As the no-nonsense title suggests, The Digital Photography Book pretty much covers all things digital photography!

There are 10 sections, with basic photography tips on: taking sharp photos, shooting flowers, weddings, landscapes, sports and people, avoiding common problems, using digital equipment properly, taking travel and city shots and printing your pictures.

My Thoughts

This book was invaluable to me when first making sense of my camera and I still refer to it as a great resource. With 1 tip per page you can learn something useful in 60 seconds without trawling through text.

Scot Kelby is the opposite of those photographers who forget what it's like to be a beginner and just lob a bucket load of jargon in your direction.

It's refreshing to get route 1, practical instructions on the basics of digital photography and taking better pictures from someone, without getting swallowed up by technical babble. The style is chatty and very easy to follow. Definitely one of the best digital photography guides around.

Best Thing

The tips on digital photography in this book are geared towards taking certain kinds of shots rather than the precise mechanisms involved. This is the best way to learn - by doing it - and also fills you with the immediate need to go off and test things out!

Worst Thing

Kelby's friendly style can become a little rambling. He has also mistaken himself for someone funny; there a quite a few little jokes, none of them good! 


The Photographer's Eye. Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos, by Michael Freeman


What makes a photograph 'work'? The Photographer's Eye looks at the range of factors involved in artistic expression through photography.

There are 6 chapters: The Image Frame, Design Basics, Graphic and Photographic Elements, Composing with Light and Color, Intent, Process.

My Thoughts

I was drawn to this book having mastered the basics of digital photography, eager to get a handle on some of the visual techniques and ideas that contribute to good photographs.

It's been an invaluable resource for the way Freeman brings clarity to those key matters like 'balance', 'rhythm', 'colour relationships' and so on, that we normally have a pretty fuzzy notion of when shooting.

Well illustrated and intelligible, a fantastic guide to photography composition. This is definitely one of the best photography books I own.

Best Thing

A good picture rests more on the elements considered by this book than its basic technical quality - so an important area, made clear.

Worst Thing

Improving your photography and taking better pictures is often a fairly instinctive procees; I think you develop an eye naturally over time. Some of the discussion in the book over-rationalises how we respond to beauty.


These two books have been a great help and source of ideas for me. I thoroughly recommend them to anyone in search of valuable tips for digital photography.

The Photography Crash Course: 17 Short Lessons To Camera Mastery

Where Next?

Compact Digital Camera Reviews

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Finding a Home Photo Printer

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