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Practical Artistry: Light & Exposure for Digital Photographers--New from O'Reilly

April 7, 2008

Sebastopol, CA-- Harold Davis, the widely-admired pro photographer and author of Photoblog 2.0, breaks new ground with Practical Artistry: Light & Exposure for Digital Photographers (O'Reilly, $29.99)--which blends the author's stunning images in a beautifully designed book with no-nonsense insights and pragmatic guidance to help digital photographers explore their world and take great photos.

By demystifying what makes up exposure--aperture, shutter speed, and sensitivity (ISO)--Harold aims to show photographers how to measure light in order to capture their intended images. "It turns out that one of the most effective tools for measuring light is the human eye. It's likely that eventually you may do a better job than your camera," explains Harold, who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Along with his new book from O'Reilly, Harold is also the author of "The Photographer's Guide to Yosemite & the High Sierra" and "100 Views of the Golden Gate."

Indeed, this timely new book treats the techniques of conventional photography and the tools of the digital artist holistically; they are both integral to the best practices of modern digital photography.

"As a photographer, I've always learned by looking at photographs, particularly when the data about how the photo was made accompanies the image. So I created a book that allows people to learn about photography and to think about how to make photographs by simply looking at photos taken in specific conditions."

"The photographs that are used to illustrate this book range from macro images of tiny water worlds to the vast circle of stars in the sky. And many of the photos in my book involve adventures in the physical world. For example, I spent the night on top of Half Dome in Yosemite to photograph star trails (shown on page 142). The next morning I hiked down the Half Dome ladder (shown on page 133) to illustrate front light," says Harold. "In Light & Exposure the stories of how the photos were made are integrated with the technical information to help readers understand how the photos were created."

Topics covered include:

  • Evaluating light and choosing the best exposure
  • Working with aperture and depth of field
  • Selecting shutter speed
  • Using ISO, noise, and light sensitivity to your advantage
  • Shooting in available and artificial light
  • Understanding the true potential of the digital darkroom
  • Starting with the best exposure in your camera, rather than relying on post-processing fixes

This is among the most beautifully illustrated and designed books ever published by O'Reilly. Each of Harold's wonderful photos highlights the information-rich text--from nighttime photos of the Golden Gate Bridge to a Canada goose caught in the act of flight. Applying the techniques of traditional photography to digital photography, Harold shows beginners, prosumers, and professional photographers how to discover creative ways to explore the world. Readers of all levels are sure to find inspiration in Light & Exposure.

Advanced Praise:

"If you buy only one photography technique book this year, make it Harold Davis's 'Light & Exposure for Digital Photographers.' This book is an instant classic, and is the first to provide the information you need to really understand exposure from the perspective of the digital (as opposed to film) photographer. And Davis doesn't just talk about technique, he walks the walk--Davis's example photos are creative and awe-inspiringly beautiful. Best of all: he explains the tools and techniques used to create each photo in 'Light & Exposure for Digital Photographers.'" --Rick Smolan, Photojournalist and creator of the "Day in the Life" book series

Harold Davis is a photographer and author. His photographs have been widely published, exhibited, and collected. The author of more than twenty books, Harold has written (and illustrated with his photographs) "Digital Photography: Digital Field Guide" (Wiley), "The Photographer?s Guide to Yosemite and the High Sierra" (Countryman/W.W.Norton), and "100 Views of the Golden Gate" (Wilderness Press). Harold writes the popular Photoblog 2.0, which covers aesthetic, technical, and personal issues related to digital photography.

More information about the book, including table of contents, index, author bio, and samples

Practical Artistry: Light & Exposure for Digital Photographers
Harold Davis
ISBN: 978-0-596-52988-8, $29.99 US

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