There are a lot of books out there for photography and Lightroom and I wanted to share with you Lightroom Guy’s favorite books of 2015. Not that they’ve all been written in 2015.
Update 08/24/2020 – Even 5 years later, most of these books still contain important, useful information and one is updated for 2020. I can no longer recommend The Professional Photographer’s Handbook.
They aren’t all “new” in that sense, however they were new to me and valuable enough to share with my readers. So, in no particular order, here they are:
- The Digital Negative: Raw Image Processing in Lightroom, Camera Raw, and Photoshop – 2nd Edition by Jeff Schewe. Published in 2015, this is the ultimate Lightroom user’s book in my opinion. UPDATE 08/24/2020 – Still one of the most comprehensive books on camera raw. Schewe is a long time Adobe alpha and beta tester and you won’t find a photographer/writer better than this when it comes to explaining Lightroom and digital image technology. He defines camera raw down to the pixels before giving his honest and forthright approach to raw image processing – mostly using Lightroom (there is some Photoshop) and covering nearly every tool that’s currently available within the develop module. He wraps the book up with an explanation of his personal workflows and tips on how to set up your computer to get the best performance out of Lightroom. If you only buy one Lightroom book, this is it.
- Skin: The Complete Guide to Digitally Lighting, Photographing, and Retouching Faces and Bodies – 2nd Edition by Lee Varis. Even though this book is from 2010 (An update to the first edition of 2006) this is the most thorough technical book I’ve ever read on the subject. UPDATE 08/24/2020 – Still one of Lightroom Guy’s favorite books. It is still my go-to book for skin retouching techniques. Since the very beginning of the evolution of digital photography, Lee Varis (also an amazing photographer) has been writing books on the subject. In this case, he’s dissected photographing humans down to its essentials – light, capturing an image and color. Not so much a book to read cover-to-cover, but a go-to resource whenever I’m challenged with getting proper skin tones and retouching faces. There are lots of Photoshop techniques and a small section on Lightroom (a little dated, but all the tutorials still work very well).
- Color Management & Quality Output: Working with Color from Camera to Display to Print: (The Digital Imaging Masters Series) – 1st Edition by Tom P. Ashe. This 2014 book is a labor of love and took Ashe many years to write. UPDATE 08/24/2020 So much of this book is foundational, it’s still very full of important printing science and skills and still one of my favorite books. He’s taken the fundamentals and the minutia of color printing and step-by-step covered every single aspect of digital printing – from camera to final print and even mounting – anyone could ever wish to know (and more!). This is definitely the book to own when you’re ready to tackle becoming a master printer and making gorgeous prints from your camera raw files or, to simply understand how to install those ICC printer profiles from your paper manufacturer or a service bureau into Lightroom. Because this book is about printing, I recommend purchasing it as a printed book and not a Kindle book if possible (it’s heavy!).
- The Art, Science, and Craft of Great Landscape Photography – 1st
Edition by Glenn Randall. Published in 2015 by a native Colorado photographer, this how-to book does an excellent job of explaining what it takes to make great landscape photos. And this year, 2020, a new, completely revised 2nd edition is available of the same name. These are both excellent books. Randall incorporates the technical aspects of photography into the artistic approach of seeing. As an educator, I appreciate Randall’s approach to technology. As an artist I admire his work and his tenacity. These timeless books will be inspirational for any aspiring landscape shooter.
The Professional Photographer’s Legal Handbook – 1st First Edition by Nancy E. Wolff.OUTDATED – I ran into some issues regarding my copyrights in 2015 and this helped me to clear up the gray areas and settle the matter. Now, I know this book is the oldest of the lot, having been published in 2007, but law is law and all of this is still in force as far as I know. It’s only available as a Kindle book or used, as the paperback book is out of print. However, it covers a lot of ground regarding copyright, including a lot of very interesting stories that relate to how copyright law works and what the resolutions were. (The stories aren’t dry reading at all!) Wolff is counsel to the Digital Media Licensing Association, represents the National Geographic Photographer’s Group and is an advisor to the Gordon Parks Foundation in addition to dozens of other notable clients. From Elvis Presley to Marilyn Monroe to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and How to Enforce Copyright on the Internet, this is as much an interesting read as it is a legal one.
2015 has been a great year for Lightroom Guy and I want to thank all my readers for their support over the past year and to wish you all Happy Holidays and a Happy and Healthy New Year!