A Good Guidebook for Beginners?


TPF Noob!
Mar 25, 2006
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I'm a complete novice when it comes to photography but really interested in learning about it. In a few months I'll have an opportunity to learn from a local photographer, but before then I'd like to study up a bit on my own. Does anyone know a good book that can introduce me to the basic concepts of (digital) photography. Somebody recommended The Pro Digital Photgrapher's Handbook by Michael Freeman, which sounded good but possibly a bit technical (I didn't get a chance to read it, just heard about it. Maybe someone can tell me more?). I'm interested in knowing that stuff as well, but first I'd like to get into the creative side of it a bit. Any suggestions?
The Photography Bible: A Complete Guide for the 21st Century Photographer: by Daniel Lezano

[ame="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0715318063/qid=1143310464/sr=2-1/ref=pd_bbs_b_2_1/104-0901983-9966365?s=books&v=glance&n=283155"]Amazon Link[/ame]

It's a ture beginner book, and sounds like it might be just right. I have it for my wife who likes it a lot. Clear illustrations, good lay-out, up-to-date relevance.
You'll also learn a lot in this forum.

Lots of information and knowledge from amatures and proffesionals all in one place and hundreds of combined years worth of experience to draw from!
Anything you don't understand or need more help with just post a question!
Hit your local library. Any book titled something like "Complete guide . . ." will be a good starting point.

Now for my 2 cents worth:

A camera is a tool, like a typewriter or word processor. A good camera can no more produce a great print automatically than a good word processor can automatically produce a great novel. They're tools -- nothing else, but nothing less. You will do well, once you have a camera, to learn it so thoroughly that you think of it no more than a carpenter thinks about his hammer. Well, almost. . .

It's your use of the equipment that matters. While you're learning all the lovely intricate ins and outs of the various cameras, enlargers, printers, etc., always remember that a good print depends above all on your understanding of lighting and composition.

So while you're dealing with learning about the tools, please spend some time learning about the heart of the matter -- what makes a good print. I suggest you see if your library has books on photographic composition. Freeman Patterson's "Photographing The World Around You" is a good starting point, as are any books on composition directed toward painters.

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