Sunday, 11 April 2010

Background Reading

I have been asked to photograph a wedding in the Summer, so this is one of a few wedding photography books that I bought from Amazon. I have to say, this book is an absolute Godsend!
I have declined requests to take wedding photos up until now, because I always think of this type of photography as dull and restrictive from a creative point of view.
However, this book shows a fresh approach to wedding photography, it's loaded with tips and advice and all of the settings for the various shots. The pictures are imaginative and the quality is impressive. Many of the shots have won awards, which is not the least bit surprising.

I bought this book because the use of flash is my Achilles Heel! Most photographers advise us to get the flash off the camera, but if you are working in a venue such as a church, taking pictures 'on the fly', you haven't the luxury of setting up stands and umbrellas etc.
This book explains how to bounce flash properly, ie the angle as well as the direction. I also have a better understanding of using fill-flash outdoors and exactly when to use it and what to do with the diffuser that came with my flash.

I have been converting an increasing number of my infrared images to black and white, thanks to this book. There are many ways to convert an image, that I was aware of, but not the subtle differences between them. I also learned about different ways to sharpen an image, that I did not previously know about.
I'm also thinking about incorporating duotones and tritones now that I have seen the effects of them.

I always attempt panoramic shots when presented with an appropriate landscape, but I have had some problems with distortion due to parallax error. This book is perhaps a little too technical for me, but certainly helped me to choose a suitable VR tripod head and stitching software that allows more manual control than Photoshop.
It includes some helpful case studies that walk you through the entire process from image capture, stitching, manipulation, and fine-tuning to output.

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