In 2007 I wrote a series of three articles, called "Take Your Photography To The Next Level" for the popular website Luminous Landscape.
The premise of the three articles was that if one understood where we are in both technical and aesthetic skill, we could use this information to decide where to put our efforts to improve.
I felt that many of us spend years practicing the things we are already fairly competent at, fine tuning them, while ignoring the other aspects of our skills which are not as strong. I think it is human nature to work on our strengths, but in fact for a given amount of effort, working on our strengths can produce only a miniscule amount of progress compared to working on our weaknesses.
Gerhard Rossbach of Rockynook Publishing contacted me about taking these three articles and turning them into a book, using some of my blog essays which had a similar theme to make the book. I decided that given the huge number of technical books on the market and my own interest in the aesthetic skills of photography - seeing, finding, composing and so on, that would be the direction the book would take.
Although the original essays dealt with both technical and aesthetic skills, the book would concentrate only on the aesthetic aspects of photography.
Of some 500 blog entries, I selected 78 which best suited the book and rewrote all of them. In some cases the essays were more than doubled in length while all were strengthened and strongly edited. Having done this rewriting I again went through the essays and picked the 50 strongest most useful essays for inclusion in the book.