Thursday, December 18, 2014

Art of Everyday Photography

I have had a digital SLR camera for years now. I love it. But more and more, I have found myself trading it for the convenience of my iPhone camera. Sometimes that has been the right decision. And sometimes not. After not bringing my DSLR to Australia in August and regretting every minute of it, I have been using it more often. Recently, I was given a book to review by photographer, artist and blogger Susan Tuttle and I have the say the timing was perfect. I am now using my "real" camera much more often.


Susan's new book is called Art of Everyday Photography: Move Toward Manual and Make Creative Photos.

It has become my go-to guide for everything photography. In easy to understand, every-day language, Susan has written a creative and useful book that has the feel of a workshop. She uses a "stepping-stone" model, which I have found tremendously helpful. In all sections, she provides information that relates to all ranges of control on a typical DSLR -- from auto mode to manual mode. In this way, even if you know nothing about cameras, you can begin to quickly learn and immediately take better photos. Because of this model, the book can be helpful to all levels of photographers.

Chapters 1 and 2 (Make Better Photos Right Now and Take Creative Control of Your Digital SLR) introduce the basics; review aperture, shutter speed and ISO exposure; provide explanations about modes, lenses, and light meters; and offer guidance on the important components and features of cameras and photography. Chapters 3 through 6 focus on types of photography: portraits; still-life and  food; landscape and nature; and everyday life and travel. Throughout all the chapters are very helpful tips and photographs that very effectively illustrate the concepts.

Perhaps the best part of this book is the approach that Susan takes in teaching. It allows you to immediately go out and take better photographs. And the more you delve into the detail she offers. the better the images get. It has been fun learning from and being inspired by Susan. I am now even more excited to get out there with my trusty (and previously rusty) old Nikon.



11 comments:

Marit said...

I live in a new (and beautiful!) area for 8 months now and I haven't taken my camera out in all that time... shame on me! (I don't have a camera on my cellphone...) I should go out and take pics soon... your post stimulates me! Have a great weekend Seth!

elle said...

Great timing, Seth. I have been seriously thinking of upgrading from my ol' point and shoot. I do have one of Susan's books and I'll check this one out so I'll be prepared if the lump in my sock is not coal but a camera.!!!

Miriam Schulman said...

Totally agree! I have a digital slr for photographing my artwork but it is very heavy, I am thinking of getting a light weight point and shoot because I really don;t like the pictures I take with my iphone

JackieP Neal said...

heehee I was just looking at new dslr cameras yesterday- one in particular with a great Macro- Nikon- by the way! Here's hoping my hub saw the one I was oohing and ahhing over and Santa puts it in my stocking! heehee
I never have used a phone camera, I had a beautiful "old fashioned" non digital Nikon,with every size lens and filter you can imagine- that I gifted my son- it now sits in the back of his closet-as he favors his digital Canon rebel something!

Kay Wallace said...

I have to admit that when I came out of the dark ages and bought my first "smart phone," I was swayed to the Samsung Galaxy S5 because of it's camera. I used to spend literally hours trying to take pictures of my artwork with my "real" camera, and now I do it in just minutes with great success. My husband uses an SLR for his photography of nature and loves it. He might like this book! Thanks for sharing, Seth!

PamelaArtsinSF said...

Interesting! I have been a photographer for my entire life/career, starting with a Nikkormat at age 15 and earning a BFA in Fine Art Photography. I can tell you on thing, it is not the camera that makes the photograph - it is the eye of the photographer and the understanding of basic photographic elements -- most importantly understanding natural light. So, do whatever makes you happy and don't worry about what camera you use.

Sharmon Davidson said...

This book sounds like just what I need! I was recently gifted a DSLR and have never used one before. Thanks for sharing this, I will definitely check it out.

Stacey Vadaj said...

you forgot to mention that she has information about how to use your iPhone for better pictures, too. she calls it iPhotography and i've gotten a lot better at getting the shots i was missing before. love the book!

john said...

I took Susan's online photography class and it was totally wonderful. So I know this book must be as well. :-)

Sue Marrazzo said...

Thanks for the info!

Susan Tuttle said...



Thank you Seth for this amazing review! I am most grateful! Happy Holidays to you!