One of my favourite books has been Ansel Adam’s Examples - The Making Of 40 Images which told of the finding, working, making and processing of 40 of Ansel’s more important images. In my days of film, this was both an enjoyable read and quite informative on the subject of being an artist photographer. For some time I thought it would be a good idea to make and equivalent book for the digital era. The problems would be different, some of the questions that needed answers had changed and of course image processing was radically different, even if the goals were the same.
Half the chapters of my new book From Camera To Computer discuss working the scene and thinking about the making of images, while the other half detail the steps I took and why I took them to produce my final edited image.
It has bothered me for a long time that many respected photographers leave the impression that it is enough to simply correct and flaws in an image, whether they be colour balance or handling of highlights or shadows. They suggest that tools like Lightroom are all you need to edit most images. My experience is that the fine print takes hours of work in Photoshop to fine tune and not only fix but improve images to better reflect what I saw or even more importantly felt at the time of making the image. I have therefore made an effort to show the reader how I go beyond simple repairs to make stronger, more emotive images.
I wrote my first book Take Your Photography To The Next Level to better explain the Art in making photographs - in this second book, I wanted to try to take the reader along with me as I solved real world problems in finding, composing and capturing images. Thus I discuss focus blending, stitching and exposure blending. I show many failed images that lead to successful ones as I work the scene. I show several “proof sheets” which illustrate the many attempts which lead to the final image that works.