Shoot! – review

Last week, I bought myself a present: the book ‘Shoot‘ . It was on my wish list for my birthday, but since that’s still so far off, I decided to go ahead and buy it. My photos can definitely use some help! offered the solution and the book ended up in our mailbox pretty quickly. The design and of course Anki’s beautiful pictures are amazing. A very good start!

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I once bought the book ‘Digital photography for dummies’ and although it was informative, it was not entertaining. Needless to say, my expertise in photography did not improve at all.

I read this book in one streak, however. It was informative, yet fun and relaxing. It also inspired me to take up my Nikon D200 (‘hand me down’ from my dad) and start fidgeting about with the buttons.

I experimented a little last week. I admit, I used to take pictures in de pre programmed setting or lousy pictures with my iPhone. The pictures I took last week, however, were all taken with the camera on manual setting. The pictures of Flavies birthday outfit for example, were shot with manual adjustments. I think they turned out very well. The pictures of the party itself were shot by my father, not me.

Despite the fact that I had the week off from work, I was not able to delve into the topic or to start the Shoot! photo challenge.

I’m going to try to occupy myself with it this week. Anyway, I’ll at least use Anki’s advice to shoot better pictures for this blog in the future. Please feel free to let me know whenever they do not live up to your standards. Sometime next week(s) I’ll post an update to see if you’ve noticed any improvement at all!

Back to the book. I general, nothing but positive notes. The book is logically structured, with useful tips and tricks, varied with beautiful pictures and fun DIY projects. Only soft colors were used, which greatly enhances the reading experience. Perhaps one little note: the bright yellow text is not that easy to read on the white background. Maybe that wasn’t the best choice…

If my photos greatly improve in quality, the book will have proven its value. What I enjoyed most, is the fact that the writer advises to just follow your heart. You cannot find that in the technical books about photography. They only made me feel like my photos are garbage. Of course, they’re not that great, and the contrast with Anki’s pictures only makes it obvious. But I minded a lot less than before.

I’ve wanted to develop my skills in this hobby for ages. My father is an amateur photographer and he joined a photography club. I have always liked that idea and I would love to capture the world as I see it on film (the digital version of course, I won’t even risk analogous photography).  But that is the difficult part! Anki does explain it very basic in her book and emphasizes that you should keep your own style and vision. I like that. What use is all the technical stuff if your pictures have no personality or feeling.

Obviously, you need a little bit of the technical knowledge, but that can also expand as you’re shooting more pictures. The important part is trying to catch that special something you find worthy enough to capture forever. That sentiment, that idea, spoke to me from this book. Definitely a plus.

I’ve added some photography items to my birthday wishlist for the future. Too bad it’s still so far away!

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