eBook review — Craft and Vision’s Exposure for Outdoor Photography

exposure.png

It’s been a few months since I’ve written up a book review, so right on time here comes another title from Craft and Vision — this eBook is Exposure for Outdoor Photography by Michael Frye.

I don’t know about you, but when I first saw the title, I thought — “Outdoor Photography, that’s a bit broad, isn’t it?” It turns out that in Frye’s use of the term, he’s talking primarily about landscape photography, but includes some wildlife and outdoor macro / close-up photography in the definition. So, no pictures of the family on a picnic here, but the same principles would apply.

But I digress.

If you buy Exposure, $5 will get you a 51 page PDF eBook — not counting the covers, that’s 48 tabloid-sized (!) pages of material on all the ins and outs of photographic exposure, including example images and 10 really good case studies (rapidly becoming my favorite part of Craft and Vision books!). So let’s break this down to see if it’s something that would be of use to you…

The first 20% or so of the eBook is a thorough if somewhat elementary discussion of the exposure triangle (shutter speed, aperture, ISO), metering and exposure modes on a camera, and using a histogram for better exposed images. Nothing Earth-shattering, but a good introduction to the topic if you’re relatively new to photography, and an excellent refresher otherwise.

But the majority of the eBook is devoted to case studies. A few of them are on scattered aspects of photographic exposure (using the histogram, the zone system, HDR and exposure blending, etc.). But most of them use example images to explore all the various aspects of the exposure triangle:

  • Maximizing depth of field for scenic shots

  • Minimizing depth of field to isolate a subject from its background

  • Short exposures to freeze motion

  • Long exposures to blur motion

  • Pushing ISO for low-light work

You get the picture — the eBook covers the exposure triangle very thoroughly, and with well-chosen example images to help you see the effect of changes in various settings. Then Frye wraps up with a short discussion on breaking the rules — when choosing a deliberately unusual approach to exposure can be a good creative choice.

So all-in-all, I’d say that for most people, it’s a very good value at $5.