Saturday, 20 April 2013

"The Photographer's Eye" by Michael Freeman

Photograph copyright© Ilex Press, All Rights Acknowledged

Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos

There are shoals of books on the wielding of a camera, and if their promise of making one a better photographer rested on their pictorial content alone, then any one of a thousand candidates would be likely.

What sold this book to me was its table of contents. As an educator, it communicated straight away that the author understood his field well enough to distil it down to a small group of core principles, and to order them in priority - a hierarchy of development. As an autodidact, his tone of voice had to resonate with me - to be clear and yet not patronising; to be succinct, yet not terse; to be warm and credible.

Michael Freeman does all of these things. I have rarely enjoyed a book so much, learned so much, and so quickly. He is true to his word, holding firmly to the ideas of composition and design by addressing the qualitative nature of the arrangement of visual elements.

What the book calls "Chapters" are sections covering: the image frame; design basics; graphic and photographic elements; composing with light and colour; intent; and process. Under each section are a number of concise topics, well explained and well illustrated.

Some might baulk at the price, but it is tremendous value - the publication is a generously proportioned 192 pages, the high production quality is essential, and it rewards multiple re-readings. Very highly recommended.

I've already added Mr.Freeman's other books to my wishlist.

Loo Yeo

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