We all need a creative spark now and then, something to get the juices flowing and help us muster the energy to get out of bed at 4:30am for that shoot. Sometimes, I hit a creative rut, and when I do, it seems like there is always an excuse not to shoot. Bad light. Too many clouds. No interesting subjects. Or maybe the recession has you down and you can’t take that two-week safari to Africa this year. Well, a good book can cure that and I’m currently reading two that are chock-full of awesome shooting ideas. We all have room for creative improvement, and there’s nothing better than honing our skills or piquing our creativity by reading a good book.
Kudos keep coming in for Jason Odell’s newest interactive PDF book, The Photographer’s Guide to Silver Efex Pro.
“The Photographer’s Guide to Silver Efex Pro” is a must- read for any photographer interested in converting images to black and white. Jason wrings out the software in a logical and lucid way, making one aware of the tremendous power of Silver Efex Pro and how to get the very most out of it. Another winning eBook from Jason Odell! Highly recommended.” –Tony Sweet, Nikon “Legend behind the Lens”
“Your book is absolutely superb. I have been using Silver Efex since it came out. Your book is exactly what I have needed for better understanding it.”– Jack Larson
“I have been doing traditional darkroom work for over 60 years and got Silver Efex as it seemed very familar with my background and experience. However, as a computer and software user my eyes glaze over “a lot”; so far your ebook has been easy to follow. I must have at least 6 books on Photoshop… along with some other videos, etc. but everytime I open one to use a technique it is always a struggle; not so with your tutorial on Silver Efex.”– Ann Clancy
“The new book is awesome! Just bought it today. Thanks again!”— Michael Salerno
“Thank you for this wonderful book. I’m only on page 48, but what I’ve learned is considerable, even though I’ve used SEP for some time now.”– Guy Perkins
The Photographer’s Guide to Silver Efex Pro is available from Luminescence of Nature Press
My first read this summer has been Joe McNally’s The Hot Shoe Diaries. All I can say about this book is “wow”. If you are remotely interested in shooting events, weddings, or portraits, this book is an absolute must-read. Throughout this book, you’ll follow world-renowned photographer Joe McNally as he illuminates his subjects and his readers with small flash technology (ie, Speedlights). As the old saying goes, if you can’t bring your party to the light, bring the light to the party. After I read this book, I had to fight the strong temptation to go out and purchase 47 SB-900 speedlights.
Next on my list is Tony Sweet’s Fine Art Digital Nature Photography. You know all those cool filter packs, like Nik Color Efex Pro? I sometimes wonder just what do to do with all those interesting filter effects. Well, Tony knows exactly what to do. In this book, Tony will show you numerous techniques using Photoshop and many other techniques that can be done in-camera (like multiple exposures). If you need to fire up that creative spark, this is one of those books that can get you out of your rut and back in a groove. I highly recommend it!
So even if you can’t get out and shoot this summer, get educated!