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Books

Scott Kelby isn’t very funny. Just as well the rest of his book’s good

My quest for a decent digital SLR book took me to Borders at the weekend where, after a bit of swearing – “all these books are thirty quid and written in gibberish!” – I found something that (a) looked decent and (b) wasn’t thirty quid: The Digital Photography Book, by Scott Kelby. And it’s very good, provided you skip the chapter intros which try far too hard to be funny and which fail miserably.

Everything else, though, is excellent. As Scott explains:

If you and I were out on a shoot, and you asked me, ‘Hey, how do I get this flower to be in focus, but I want the background out of focus!’ I wouldn’t stand there and give you a lecture about aperture, exposure, and depth of field. In real life, I’d just say, ‘Get out your telephoto lens, set your f/stop to f/2.8, focus on the flower, and fire away.’ You d say, ‘OK,’ and you’d get the shot. That’s what this book is all about.

And that’s exactly what I need. If you want lots of theory, it isn’t the book for you. If you want an idiot’s guide that doesn’t talk to you as if you really are an idiot, it’s well worth £13-ish.

Are my photos any better? Nope – but at least now I know why. And I’m fighting the urge to buy a zoom lens and a tripod.