Must read Photography books

Boid

All-Pro
Dec 15, 2011
Bangalore, India
Rajiv
Hi, I was wondering what are your "must reads" on Photography. These are a few that are on my list -


1. Andre Kertesz by Michael Frizot, Annie–laure Wanaverbecq

2. Photography After Frank by Philip Gefter

3. The Pleasures of Good Photographs by Gerry Badger

4. Looking in: Robert Frank's the Americans by Sarah Greenough, Robert Frank, Stuart Alexander

5. Core Curriculum: Writings on Photography by Tod Papageorge

6. Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography by Roland Barthes

7. The Photographer's Eye by John Szarkowski

8. Koudelka: Gypsies by Will Guy, Josef Koudelka

9. The Camera: Ansel Adams

10. The Negative: Ansel Adams

11. Real World Color Management (Second Edition) - Fraser, Bruce; Murphy, Chris & Bunting

12. The Hot Shoe Diaries - Big Light from Small Flashes: McNally, Joe

13. Understanding Exposure: Bryan Peterson (nice book to start with)

14. On Photography: Sontag, Susan

15. Light: Science and Magic: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting
 

bartjeej

Hall of Famer
Nov 12, 2010
bart
As an instructional book, I'd very much like to recommend a book also called "The Photographer's Eye", by Michael Freeman. It's one of the best sold photography books ever, and for good reason: it goes very far beyond what most instructional books will tell you about image composition. If you're willing to put in the time, both to read and understand the book and to put it into practice, I'm sure pretty much everyone will learn a great deal from this book. I haven't gotten around to reading it properly yet, but I'm very impressed with what I've seen from a few pages.

also, "Storytellers" by Jerod Foster, about telling stories with your images. Lots of text (even more than The Photographer's Eye) but I find it very interesting. If you like your photos to tell a story but it's not coming across as strongly as you'd like, you might want to give it a try.
 

pdh

Legend
Jan 2, 2011
You've got a heavy list there Boid ... be careful it doesn't get in the way of taking photographs!

Agree with bartjeej about Michael Freeman - he could do with a decent editor to tidy up his prose sometimes, but overall his books are excellent.
 

Boid

All-Pro
Dec 15, 2011
Bangalore, India
Rajiv
You've got a heavy list there Boid ... be careful it doesn't get in the way of taking photographs!

Agree with bartjeej about Michael Freeman - he could do with a decent editor to tidy up his prose sometimes, but overall his books are excellent.
Well currently I'm reading "Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident" so it all balances out :biggrin:
 

Boid

All-Pro
Dec 15, 2011
Bangalore, India
Rajiv
As an instructional book, I'd very much like to recommend a book also called "The Photographer's Eye", by Michael Freeman. It's one of the best sold photography books ever, and for good reason: it goes very far beyond what most instructional books will tell you about image composition. If you're willing to put in the time, both to read and understand the book and to put it into practice, I'm sure pretty much everyone will learn a great deal from this book. I haven't gotten around to reading it properly yet, but I'm very impressed with what I've seen from a few pages.

also, "Storytellers" by Jerod Foster, about telling stories with your images. Lots of text (even more than The Photographer's Eye) but I find it very interesting. If you like your photos to tell a story but it's not coming across as strongly as you'd like, you might want to give it a try.
Thanks! I was confused that there were two books with the same name. But usually it's the one by John Szarkowski that gets referred to the most. I'll give the other a gander as well.
 

stanleyk

Top Veteran
May 23, 2011
Taylor, Texas
This is a really fascinating book I read recently:

Amazon.com: Believing Is Seeing: Observations on the Mysteries of Photography (9781594203015): Errol Morris: Books

I tend to enjoy monographs more. I recently "discovered" this photographer named David Plowden. I was trying to find photographers who took photos in rural areas. I got three monographs by him used (ex library copies are always great). Anyway this one had the best photo quality.

Amazon.com: Imprints: A Retrospective (9780821223239): David Plowden, Alan Trachtenberg: Books

And my new all time favorite (my Christmas present to myself):

Amazon.com: Chromes (9783869303116): William Eggleston: Books
 

stanleyk

Top Veteran
May 23, 2011
Taylor, Texas

Country Parson

Top Veteran
Apr 5, 2011
North Carolina
Dan
Let me reinforce Stanleyk's reference to Believing Is Seeing. This is a fantastic look at the philosophical issues raised by photography. It starts off like a detective story about a particular pair of old photos from the Crimean War. Soon we find ourselves in the middle of the the Abu Ghraib fiasco (and its horrible reflection on the American military), and as a result we find ourselves asking fundamental questions about photography and truth; with a passing reference to Alice in Wonderland. Highly recommended for those who are interested in photography and social issues, as well as photography and cognitive issues of perception about meaning and truth. His conclusions resonant with Socrates/Plato's warning that we cannot trust our senses for ultimate truth. I have been reading a library copy, but this one is to be added to my personal library.
Stanleyk, I will look up the others you suggest. I also am interested in photography in rural areas, since I live in such a place.
 

krugorg

All-Pro
Sep 26, 2011
Minnesota USA
Kyle Krug
I tend to enjoy monographs more. I recently "discovered" this photographer named David Plowden. I was trying to find photographers who took photos in rural areas. I got three monographs by him used (ex library copies are always great). Anyway this one had the best photo quality.

Amazon.com: Imprints: A Retrospective (9780821223239): David Plowden, Alan Trachtenberg: Books
Thanks again for the tip on Plowden. I picked up a decent, used copy of Imprints and love his work!

He has some stuff up on his webpage, mostly 70s-90s:
David Plowden
 

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