Thick and Rich – A Book that Answers All of Your Questions.

Well, most of them anyway.
A book arrived the other day for review,Light and Lens: Photography In the Digital Age by Robert Hirsch , An appropriate title for a photography book, but such a wide open brief.
[photopress:light_and_lens.jpg,full,centered]
A major surprise, as I’ve sat down with this book about 4 times in the past 2 days. It’s not the ADD, but the richness of the content.
And the range of coverage.
Rarely have we seen a book with multiple content listings, as wide as what we cover right here on photoinduced.
With a breakdown on historical methods, noted practitioners, sample assignments to help illustrate to the reader pertinent concepts ( imagine an assignment called “Filtering for emotional impact”), advent of digital, full easy to understand explanations of Photoshop tools and what it means to you, presentations, assignment advice, design discussions, brilliant samples by the best photographers today.

The writing style is not overly technical, but the topics covered are meant for the shooter who wants to learn more. And it should answer most of the questions you may have about photography in a condensed manner.

Hopefully it will spur you on to get the full sized tomes of info, but this is a great reference book.
Mr. Hirsch is an educator and that is made incredibly obvious by the careful path he takes you on and the crediting of sources that will aid in your further study.

As a student of the art and craft, this volume covers photography history with a visual perspective. Not just “here comes the daguerreotype, then onto to silver halide, and hello digital” there is a balanced left brain-right brain approach.

You are thrust into the current technology fairly quickly in the book, and all things digital are covered, with a constant eye to what you are capturing on those mega pixel laden media cards.
Imagine an assignment called “Filtering for emotional impact”.

On thing I particularly loved was the caliber and diversity of photographer’s work he references, to make the visual points.
Photographers as diverse as Loretta Lux, Robert Polidori, Bill Owens and the Starn Twins.

Of course it depends how you like to learn. Even if video or online demos are your method of choice, Robert Hirsch will make you think twice.
As I said, I kept going back in the book to check on things and find it very easy to navigate. And the somewhat short “snacks” of a description served their purpose and satisfied.

Here is an excerpt from a non technical section:

Challenging Fear

“The major block to getting new ideas is fear. Fear takes on endless forms: fear of the unknown, of being wrong, of being seen as foolish, or of changing the way in which something has been done in the past. Fear can be aggravated by procrastination and a lack of preparation. Apprehension brought on by trying to anticipate every possible consequence and end result deters creative development by misdirecting or restraining imaginative energy. It is okay to make mistakes; do not insist that everything be absolutely perfect. Gaffes can open conduits to new possibilities, and mishaps can be good fortune in disguise. It is better to take a chance and see what happens than to let a promising opportunity disappear. Beginners are not expected to be experts, so use this status to your advantage. Learning involves doing; therefore, make those extra exposures and prints to see what happens.”

The lessons have been student tested and book is a work of passion and scholarship.

Yep, I’m excited about this one.
Truly thick and rich.

(don’t forget about the Annie Leibowitz book we are giving away on Wednesday)

Cheers!
Damon Webster

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  • Opening April 4th, 2015
  • 531 W 25th St
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  • Tel: 212-414-0370
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  • Tel: 310-440-7300
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  • New York,NY 10001
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  • Frédéric Brenner: An Archaeology of Fear and Desire
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  • Tel: 212-334-0100
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  • BERT STERN: FROM THE ARCHIVES OF BERT STERN
  • Through June 20th, 2015
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  • 10012
  • Phone: 1-212-966-6223
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • Art on Camera: Photographs by Shunk-Kender, 1960–1971
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  • 10019-5497
  • (212) 708-9400
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Captain Linnaeus Tripe
    Photographer of India and Burma, 1852–1860
  • Through May 25th, 2015
  • 1000 Fifth Avenue (at 82nd Street)
  • New York, NY 10028
  • Phone: 212-535-7710

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