Mastering Digital SLR Photography - Book Review
Mastering Digital SLR Photography covers three main areas. These are how a Digital SLR works, mastering the different controls this type of camera offers and composing your photos.
The book is written by David D. Busch. David has written over 90 books and I think it is fair to say he knows a Digital SLR inside out.
Who is the Book For?
The book is ideal for you if you are serious about photography. If you are just starting out the book is written in a way where most of it is likely to make sense. In fact for someone with limited knowledge about Digital SLRs this book is a good way of quickly building up an understanding of your camera.
If you already know your way around a Digital SLR then may well find this book goes over ground you already know about.
Some photography books are an easy read. I wouldn't say that was the case here owing to the volume of information it contains, plus the fact that some of it is quite technical. To help make the book easier to understand there are a number of diagrams and pictures to support and help explain the text.
There are plenty of books around that cover similar ground to Mastering Digital SLR Photography. With a lot of time given over to discussing how the camera works and problems such as dust it is orientated more towards the workings of the camera itself than books that spend more time helping you to improve picture composition.
Mastering Digital SLR Photography is divided into 10 chapters. There is also an introduction, glossary and index. The book runs to 312 pages.
Digital SLR Photography Now and in the Future
To get started David runs through the advantages of Digital SLRs. He also talks you through the disadvantages of using them.
Digital SLR Technology Made Easy
This chapter looks at sensors, controlling exposure time, how a Digital SLR generates colours, viewfinders, storage and choosing the right DSLR for you. It includes how the sensor can impact noise and dynamic range.
Mastering Your DSLR Controls
Here David covers exposure controls, metering and focusing. You will gain an understanding of manual exposure, aperture priority, shutter priority, tonal range and histograms.
DSLR Quirks and Strengths
It is time to look inside a Digital SLR and find out how mirrors are used to pass light coming into the lens onto the sensor. Also covered are viewfinders, dust and image storage.
Working With RAW and Other File Formats
RAW, TIFF Jpeg? Not sure which one you should use? David discusses the difference between the formats and the pros and cons of each type.
Working With Lenses
Understanding the different types of lenses and their features is critical if you are to get the most out of your Digital SLR. As well as running through different types and discussing how lenses can react differently with DSLRs David walks you through focusing, build quality and various attachments.
Close Up Photography
This is a short, sharp introduction to close up photography. It includes, macro terminology, lens choice and some shooting tips.
At over 40 pages this is the longest section of the book and there is plenty packed in. Subjects covered include the importance of position, shutter lag, continuous shooting, focusing, ISO and flash. There is also advice on freezing action.
Composition and DSLRs
This is a quick composition primer. It runs through understanding your intent, simplicity, finding your centre, the rule of thirds, linear thinking, balance and framing.
Mastering DSLR Special Features
The final section discusses Image Stabilisation, Night, Ultraviolet and Infrared photography, plus time lapse photography.
What I Really Liked
After reading this book you should have a firm foundation in understanding how your Digital SLR works. For anyone relatively new to photography the book should give you the basics of the technical aspects of photography.
Where It Could Be Better
A chapter covering useful accessories might be helpful to a lot of people who are new to Digital SLRs.
There is a lot of ground covered in this book. I would say Mastering Digital SLR Photography is a better choice for you if you are interested in the inner workings of a Digital SLR rather than if you are looking for a book to really improve the way your photographs look.
Where to Buy