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Paperback An Ansel Adams Guide: Basic Techniques of Photography Book

ISBN: 0821218824

ISBN13: 9780821218822

An Ansel Adams Guide: Basic Techniques of Photography

(Book #1 in the Ansel Adams Guide to the Basic Techniques of Photography Series)

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Good

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Book Overview

This introductory book aimed at the serious novice photographer, is based upon Ansel Adam's theories about and techniques for visualizing and making a photograph. The book is illustrated with examples of Adams' own work as well as that of other photographers.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

This is the best photography book.

This and the Ansel Adams book "The Negative" are the only photography books you will ever need. I bought quite a few books on photography, and this stands out way above the rest. Aside from the chemistry and development, the visualization and exposure are the most essential insightful discussions. The book covers the decisions you must make on which equipment is right to produce the images you are looking for. The thought provoking discussions are succinct and uncoloured. A striking point: this is one of the very few photography books that covers film pre-flashing technique to reduce contrast and open up tonal range of outdoors photographs. The Negative book also covers this in detail. A very old Kodak photography How-To book mentions this trick, but not to the detail discussed in Basic Techniques and The Negative. This book, Basic Techniques, has been updated several times, and I don't know the differences between the 1st edition and the current. Get the 1st Ed. if you can, its the original and the best. Otherwise buy the latest printing.

Excellent book on general photography.

I found the Ansel Adams books on "The Print" and "The Negative" a bit on the heavy side, but John Schaefer's book is a superb addition to any aspiring photographer's library. It covers the photographic field very comprehensively and in easily understood English, and without the frills of technical jargon so loved by some authors. Although the book deals with colour photography as well, I would thoroughly recommend this book to any aficionado of black and white photography-- it is, without doubt one of the best books on photography I have in my library!


This book has everything, and then some. It will take you from not knowing anything to being a quasi-expert in a fairly short amount of time.That said, it is pretty dry. Very textbookish in form, the book is difficult to read straight through. This is made more palatable by the extreme depth that the book goes into for each topic that it discusses.Starting with the differences in photo gear, the author leads the reader through selecting a first camera to selecting a lens to selecting a film and finally the development of the negative and print. The book is exhausting in its depth and breadth.Much time was spent on Adams' Zone system and its usefulness in taking beautiful photographs. This focus throughout the book really drove home the importance of exposure.The pictures used in the book are fantastic and the personal accounts of some photos by Adams himself are very interesting.The only thing that I felt was skimped on was the process of selecting a shot. Adams was a large-format photographer so he wasn't able to make the hundreds of shots of a scene that a 35mm photographer could make, so it was important for him to select his shots carefully. More text space devoted to Adams' method or instinct for finding shots would have been the final piece of information that would have made this a complete guide to photography.It wasn't easy reading, but I learned a lot and was able to immediately use the information in the book to improve my own photography.

Beautifully written treatise for fine photography buffs

A superbly written book. Could be used as an example of great technical writing. Reads almost like a novel - I couldn't put it down until I finished. I am now digging my darkroom equipment out of the garage with a new sense of excitement. I rushed off and bought Book 2, which I am eagerly awaiting. No, I'm not associated with the author, but I am in awe of his talents! :^)

This book uses a good blend of instructional methods.

This book is an excellent choice for beginning photographers as well as more seasoned photographers who wish to review the basics. This book covers a wide variety of techniques, as well as providing information about the history of photography, cameras, and film. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in taking up black-and-white or color photography as a hobby or as a career.
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