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Book Reviews

Idiot's Guide to Digital PhotographySpirit of Place: The Art of the Traveling Photographer 
by Bob Krist
paperback, 160pp, ISBN: 0-81745894-8

Bob Krist is an incredibly accomplished travel photographer.  A regular contributor to magazines such as National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, and Island Magazine among others, Krist has a distinctive style that communicates far more about the locations he travels to than the average stock shots.  

Here he lays out his approach to getting those images, and expresses some strong opinions as to what some other photographers do wrong.  This book reflects his vision and how he sees the world.  Though he refers to himself as a camera "gearhead" and he devotes space to the "tools of the trade" the book is much more about composition and feel than about equipment.  There's even a section in the back that addresses such basic needs as how to pack for travel shooting.

The audience for this book is really the serious amateur to pro level photographer.  Novice photographers will take away lessons here, but many of those lessons won't resonate until they've gotten past the challenges of learning their equipment and begun crafting their images rather than just taking pictures.  

Bob Krist is one of today's best travel photographers.  This is an excellent book if you want to learn how great travel photographers find those wonderful moments in time.


Galen Rowell's Inner Game of Outdoor Photography    
by Galen Rowell
Softcover, 288pp, ISBN: 0-39304985-X

I'll admit a bias before I even start - I love Galen Rowell's images and enjoy his writing.  So I was inclined to like this book before I even opened it.  The book consists of sixty-six essays on the art and craft of photography, as well as the guiding philosophy behind his photography.  These essays are culled from his long running column in Outdoor Photographer, and are illustrated by over 160 high quality color photos.

In these essays he touches on everything from composition, to equipment, to film, to flash technique.  Those who are long-term fans of his column will recognize some of the material, but all of the original articles have been updated to reflect current technology.

This is a good book for a leisurely read, as the essays break it up into easily digestable chunks.  For anyone interested in outdoor and nature photography, this book will make a great addition to your collection.


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