by Patrick Ilagan . November 14th, 2014
One of the best ways to fuel our passion for photography and keep the inspiration flowing is through investing on books. As Charles W. Eliot have said: Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers. Just like in investing on photography gear, investing on photography books opens up a lot of opportunities for us photographers such of which are learning new techniques and improving one’s shooting style or further developing your aesthetics but unlike photography gear there are no other additional bulk in your pack with the knowledge and insights that photography books can impart to you.
With so many books out in the market we have picked 9 books to inspire and help you in getting better at photography.
1. Gregory Heisler: 50 Portraits: Stories and Techniques from a Photographer’s Photograph Gregory Heisler
Creating some of the best and most iconic photographs of artists, politicians and other movers and shakers in various industries. This book collects 50 of Heisler’s best photographs along with the stories behind how was the image is made. This book is perfect for those who are looking for insights and know does a photography legend works with the other legends who are sometimes much bigger than life than Heisler himself and how does he (Heisler) go around the challenge to create an image.
2. On This Earth: Photographs from East Africa
For those with a growing collection of photography books about animals this is a must have. Englishman Nick Brandt is known for creating stunning black and white images of the African scenery. He creates these lush sepia blue-tone photos of the various animals in the East African savanna. The book features the intimate photographs of the animals in quiet stillness or in action.
3. Road to Seeing
Road to Seeing is not your ordinary photography book, it tells us the story of award winning photojournalist, Dan Winters. Filled to the brim with personal experiences, this book tells us his journey on how he become a photographer as well as the key moments in his career that has helped him shaped his life and made him chose the path he has taken. The book is perfect for those who are studying photography regardless whether you are a student or someone who’s learn on your own.
4. Steve McCurry: The Iconic Photographs: Standard Edition
If you don’t know who Steve McCurry is then chances are you haven’t seen the iconic Afghan girl portrait published in National Geographic. This book brings in together McCurry’s memorable and evocative photographs in his career.
5. Hungry Planet: What the World Eats
Whether it’s the food or the beauty and diversity of cultures that inspired you to take on the craft of photography, Hungry Planet: What the World Eats is a great addition to your photography books. Peter Menzel sits down with 30 families across the world to documents a family’s week grocery along with a detailed description and a family portrait feature the week’s worth of grocery. The book also offers photo-essays on street food, markets and cookery to give us a 360 degrees of insight as to what the world eats.
6. Underwater Dogs
Aside from being the all around winner of man’s best friend, dogs have this uncanny knack of jumping in without any second thoughts. This is what photographer Seth Casteel realized after doing the series. Full of whimsy, Underwater Dogs is perfect not just for photographers who loves dogs but also for others who needs a good laugh or two.
7. Ara Guler’s Istanbul: 40 Years of Photographs
Ara Guler’s Istanbul: 40 Years of Photographs is a collection of photographs of the city in 1940s to the 1980s by acclaimed Ara Guler. The juxtaposition of the old and the new perfectly blends to create the unique identity of Istanbul. Along with Guler’s photographs are the evocative commentaries from Orhan Pamuk who is another leading expert on Turkish culture.
8. Before They Pass Away
Travelling through the arid desert to the cold photographer Jimmy Nelson brings unto your fingertips these hidden societies rich with tradition and culture. Jimmy Nelson’s goal is to show to us the richness and beauty of these societies and how do they live in harmony with nature at the same time face the inevitable disappearance due to globalization.
Patrick Jude Ilagan is a graphic designer/photographer hailing from the vast jungles of urban Manila. Always on the look out for visually appealing stuff he scours the internet and the bustling city in search of inspiration. His tools for mass creation is a Canon 500D along with a wide array of lights and lenses plus a 4 year old (but still fighting) laptop. Check out his work on Tumblr.
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