Great lighting book recommendation

Joined
Apr 30, 2005
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109
Location
Glorious, Sunny New Jersey, USA
I don't know about you, but the only thing I have bought more of (and been more disappointed by) than camera bags, is books about lighting. Just got a book that makes up for all the rest of the ones I've read.

Steve Bavister, Lighting for Portrait Photography

Unlike most books, all the pictures are NOT his, which means that you get examples of a very wide range of styles and approaches instead of a tremendous amount of detail on how one photographer views the world. For each picture, you get a discussion of why the approach was chosen, a diagram of the layout, shooting info, and a big full page image. The portrait examples are a bit on the "hipper than hip" side - I can't remember the last time I saw so many cross processed images in one place - but you get to see an amazing amount of creativity with relatively modest setups.

Don't usually get so enthusiastic about "how to" photography books. This one is different.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2005
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1,483
Location
Lansdale PA
Have you ever looked at "Light - Science and Magic : An Introduction to Photographic Lighting" by Fil Hunter, Paul Fuqua

This is not a how to portraiture or portrait lighting book (although it does have a couple of sections on the subject) it goes more into the physics of lighting.
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
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34,723
Location
Arizona
The last book I read about lighting was David Brooks' 1980 How to Control and Use Photographic Lighting. It's certainly about time I expanded my knowelege in this area! These two books sound good. Bavister's sounds useful, but the one about physics appeals to my analytical side for sure!

Thanks!
 
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
109
Location
Glorious, Sunny New Jersey, USA
Physics of light definitely good to know

When I studied stage lighting in undergrad and grad school, we were forced to learn all kinds of physics of light, and it is something that I use every day, and not just when I'm controlling the light. It's given me an excellent feel for what to expect in terms of color and texture of light in any given situation, and how to find a place with the color and texture I want, if I'm not seeing what I want.

I'm going to check the book out. But I'll add, as a general recommendation that theatrical lighting books have awesome info on the physics of lighting, and delve into the emotional impact of different types of light, something that no photographic lighting book ever does. Understanding the best light for sorrow, or hope, or other emotional states, can be pretty useful, at least in understanding whether you're shooting against the grain...
 

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