You are previewing The Digital Photography Book, Part 1: The step-by-step secrets for how to make your photos look like the pros’!.
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The Digital Photography Book, Part 1: The step-by-step secrets for how to make your photos look like the pros’!

Book Description

Scott Kelby, the man who changed the "digital darkroom" forever with his groundbreaking, #1 bestselling, award-winning book The Photoshop Book for Digital Photographers, now tackles the most important side of digital photography--how to take pro-quality shots using the same tricks today's top digital pros use (and it's easier than you'd think).

This entire book is written with a brilliant premise, and here’s how Scott describes it: "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. A book of you and I shooting, and I answer the questions, give you advice, and share the secrets I've learned just like I would with a friend, without all the technical explanations and without all the techno-photo-speak."

This isn't a book of theory—it isn't full of confusing jargon and detailed concepts: this is a book of which button to push, which setting to use, when to use them, and nearly two hundred of the most closely guarded photographic "tricks of the trade" to get you shooting dramatically better-looking, sharper, more colorful, more professional-looking photos with your digital camera every time you press the shutter button.

Here's another thing that makes this book different: each page covers just one trick, just one single concept that makes your photography better. Every time you turn the page, you'll learn another pro setting, another pro tool, another pro trick to transform your work from snapshots into gallery prints. There's never been a book like it, and if you're tired of taking shots that look "OK," and if you’re tired of looking in photography magazines and thinking, "Why don't my shots look like that?" then this is the book for you.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
    1. Dedication
  2. Acknowledgments
  3. Other Books By Scott Kelby
  4. About The Author
  5. One. Pro Tips for Getting Really Sharp Photos: If Your Photos Aren’t Sharp, the Rest Doesn’t Matter
    1. The Real Secret to Getting Sharp Photos
    2. The Other Most Important Secret
    3. Perhaps Even More Important Than That!
    4. If You Skip This, Throw Away Your Camera
    5. If You Do This Wrong, It Will Lock Up
    6. It’s Time to Get Serious
    7. Getting “Tack Sharp” Starts with a Tripod
    8. A Ballhead Will Make Your Life Easier
    9. Don’t Press the Shutter (Use a Cable Release)
    10. Forgot Your Cable Release? Use a Self Timer
    11. Getting Super Sharp: Mirror Lock-Up
    12. Turn Off Vibration Reduction (or IS)
    13. Shoot at Your Lens’ Sharpest Aperture
    14. Good Glass Makes a Big Difference
    15. Avoid Increasing Your ISO, Even in Dim Light
    16. Zoom In to Check Sharpness
    17. Sharpening After the Fact in Photoshop
    18. Pro Sharpening
    19. Hand-Held Sharpness Trick
    20. Getting Steadier Hand-Held Shots
  6. Two. Shooting Flowers Like a Pro: There’s More to It Than You’d Think
    1. Don’t Shoot Down on Flowers
    2. Shooting Flowers with a Zoom Lens
    3. Use a Macro Lens to Get Really Close
    4. Can’t Afford a Macro? How ’bout a Close-Up?
    5. When to Shoot Flowers
    6. Don’t Wait for Rain—Fake it!
    7. Flowers on a Black Background
    8. Shooting on a White Background
    9. The Perfect Light for Indoor Flower Shots
    10. Where to Get Great Flowers to Shoot
    11. Stopping the Wind
  7. Three. Shooting Weddings Like a Pro: There Is No Retaking Wedding Photos. It’s Got to Be Right the First Time!
    1. The Trick for Low-Light Shooting in a Church
    2. Getting Soft, Diffused Light with Flash, Part 1
    3. Getting Soft, Diffused Light with Flash, Part 2
    4. Use Your Flash at Outdoor Weddings
    5. Keep Backup Memory Cards on You
    6. Formals: Who to Shoot First
    7. Formals: Where to Aim
    8. The Trick to Keeping Them from Blinking
    9. Reception Photos: Making Them Dance
    10. Your Main Job: Follow the Bride
    11. Formals: How High to Position Your Camera
    12. Formals: Don’t Cut Off Joints
    13. Formals: Build Off the Bride and Groom
    14. Formals: The Trick to Great Backgrounds
    15. Shooting the Details (& Which Ones to Shoot)
    16. Change Your Vantage Point to Add Interest
    17. Finding That Perfect Bridal Light
    18. How to Pose the Bride with Other People
    19. What to Shoot with a Wide-Angle Lens
    20. Back Up Your Photos Onsite
    21. If Shooting JPEGs, Use a Preset White Balance
  8. Four. Shooting Landscapes Like a Pro: Pro Tips for Capturing the Wonder of Nature
    1. The Golden Rule of Landscape Photography
    2. Become Married to Your Tripod
    3. Shoot in Aperture Priority Mode
    4. Composing Great Landscapes
    5. The Trick to Shooting Waterfalls
    6. A Tip for Shooting Forests
    7. Where to Put the Horizon Line
    8. Getting More Interesting Mountain Shots
    9. The Trick for Warmer Sunrises and Sunsets
    10. Turn on “The Blinkies” to Keep More Detail
    11. How to Avoid the Dreaded Blinkies
    12. How to Show Size
    13. Don’t Set Up Your Tripod. Not Yet
    14. The Trick to Getting Richer Colors
    15. What to Shoot in Bad Weather
    16. Atmosphere Is Your Friend
    17. Getting Rid of Lens Flare—The Manual Way
    18. The Landscape Photographer’s Secret Weapon
    19. Keeping Your Horizons Straight
    20. Shooting on Cloudy Days
    21. Tips for Shooting Panoramas, Part 1
    22. Tips for Shooting Panoramas, Part 2
    23. Tips for Shooting Panoramas, Part 3
    24. Faking Panoramas
    25. Why You Need a Wide-Angle Lens
    26. Shooting Wildlife? Aim at Their Eyes
    27. Don’t Crop Wildlife in Motion Too Close
    28. Shooting Wildlife? Get in Really Tight
    29. What to Shoot at Sunset
  9. Five. Shooting Sports Like a Pro: Better Bring Your Checkbook
    1. Set Your White Balance for Indoor Sports
    2. Shoot at a 1/640 Sec. Shutter Speed or Faster
    3. Pro Sports Shooting Is Dang Expensive
    4. Don’t Plan on Changing Lenses
    5. Which Lenses to Use
    6. Pre-Focus to Get the Shot
    7. Raise Your ISO to Get the Speed You Need
    8. The Pros Know the Game
    9. Don’t Always Focus on the Winner
    10. Shooting in Burst Mode
    11. Stability for Shooting Sports
    12. Shoot Vertically for More Impact
    13. Pan to Show Motion
    14. Shoot Wide Open
    15. Go for the Face
    16. RAW or JPEG for Sports Shooters?
    17. Composing for Sports
  10. Six. Shooting People Like a Pro: Tips for Making People Look Their Very Best
    1. The Best Lens for Portrait Photography
    2. Which Aperture to Use
    3. Using Seamless Backgrounds
    4. Using Canvas or Muslin Backgrounds
    5. The Right Background Outdoors
    6. Where to Focus
    7. Where to Position Your Camera
    8. Positioning Your Subject in the Frame
    9. Tip for Framing Portraits
    10. Getting Great Light Outdoors
    11. Getting Great Light Indoors
    12. Taking Great Photos of Newborn Babies
    13. Great Sunset Portraits
    14. Better Natural-Light Portraits with Reflectors
  11. Seven. Avoiding Problems Like a Pro: How to Avoid Digital Headaches
    1. Pro Tips to Avoid White Balance Problems
    2. Cold Weather Shooting Means Extra Batteries
    3. Don’t Change Lenses in Dusty Weather
    4. Apply for Permits to Shoot with Your Tripod
    5. Be Careful What You Shoot
    6. A Tip for Shooting on an Incline
    7. The Other Reason Pros Use a Lens Hood
    8. Keeping Your Lens Out of Trouble
    9. Back Up Your Photos in the Field
    10. Limit Your LCD Time to Save Battery Life
    11. Be Careful When Throwing Out CDs/DVDs
    12. Bracket If You’re Not Sure About Exposure
    13. Avoid Red Eye
    14. Remove Red Eye
  12. Eight. Taking Advantage of Digital Like a Pro: It’s More Than Just a Replacement for Film
    1. Level the Playing Field: Press That Button
    2. Put the LCD Monitor to Work
    3. Edit as You Shoot to Get More Keepers
    4. Take Advantage of the Blinkies
    5. Change Your ISO on the Fly
    6. No Penalty Fee for Experimenting
    7. Don’t Cram Too Much on One Card
    8. Take Advantage of Poster-Sized Printing
    9. You Can Make One Film Fit All
    10. Is It Better to Underexpose or Overexpose?
    11. Keep from Accidentally Erasing Memory Cards
  13. Nine. Taking Travel & City Life Shots Like a Pro: Tips for Urban Shooting
    1. How to Be Ready for “The Shot”
    2. Shoot Kids and Old People. It Can’t Miss
    3. Hire a Model (It’s Cheaper Than You’d Think)
    4. What Time to Shoot
    5. Look for Bold, Vivid Colors
    6. Shooting Travel? Visit PhotoSecrets.com First
    7. Don’t Try to Capture It All: Shoot the Details
    8. The Best Shot May Be Just Three Feet Away
    9. Shoot the Signs. You’ll Thank Yourself Later
    10. Showing Movement in the City
    11. Use an Aperture That Takes It All In
    12. For Maximum Impact, Look for Simplicity
    13. The Monopod Scam
    14. What to Do When It’s Been “Shot to Death”
    15. Including the Moon and Keeping Detail
    16. Shooting Fireworks
  14. Ten. How to Print Like a Pro and Other Cool Stuff: After All, It’s All About the Print!
    1. The Advantages of Shooting in RAW
    2. How to Process RAW Photos in Photoshop
    3. Compare Your LCD to Your Computer Monitor
    4. Organizing Your Photos with Lightroom
    5. How Many More Megapixels Do You Need?
    6. Printing Lab-Quality 8×10s
    7. Printing Lab-Quality 13×19″ Prints
    8. Printing 16×20s—The Pros’ Top Choice
    9. Which Paper Should You Print On?
    10. What Determines Which Paper You Use?
    11. Getting Your Monitor to Match Your Printer
    12. Download the Color Profiles for Your Paper
    13. Selling Your Photos as “Stock” Online
    14. A Quick Peek at My Gear
    15. Some Books I Personally Recommend
    16. Learn from Me on Adobe® Photoshop® TV
  15. Eleven. Photo Recipes to Help You Get “The Shot”: The Simple IngredientsThat Make It All ComeTogether
    1. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    2. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    3. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    4. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    5. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    6. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    7. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    8. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    9. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    10. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    11. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    12. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    13. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot
    14. The Recipe for Getting This Type of Shot