Build a Better Photograph: A Disciplined Approach to Creativity

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Overview

While many books address the equipment, techniques, and compositional approaches to image creation, few describe the steps involved in the creation of the picture idea. This book is a passport to the creative process of professional artists. The context is photography but the ideas can be applied across the board. This book emphasizes working out how to achieve the end result before we begin. A key question is what do we have to get right as we shoot and what can we achieve later in post-processing? The correct ...

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Overview

While many books address the equipment, techniques, and compositional approaches to image creation, few describe the steps involved in the creation of the picture idea. This book is a passport to the creative process of professional artists. The context is photography but the ideas can be applied across the board. This book emphasizes working out how to achieve the end result before we begin. A key question is what do we have to get right as we shoot and what can we achieve later in post-processing? The correct answer will drive the quality of our imagery and extend our careers.

This book is not a how-to book on making photographs. Rather, this book is about the creative process of conceptualizing ideas and executing those ideas to make a photograph. How do artists conceptualize? Where do they get their ideas? How do they incorporate those ideas into their work?

Compositing and storytelling abilities have never been easier and more difficult to achieve. Sound contradictory? It is. Illogical? It is. We will journey together to solve the many whys and hows so that the technology does not get in the way of image content and story.

As it relates to a particular topic in the text, there are discussions about photographic theory, lighting, composition, color and, of course, Photoshop. Included are examples of my work, each with a detailed examination of my creative process for that particular photograph. Again the idea here is to examine creativity in a way that demystifies the process.

Artists create. Good artists have a process. Great artists have discipline. This book is about all three.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933952185
  • Publisher: Rocky Nook
  • Publication date: 12/5/2009
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 7.10 (w) x 10.02 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael E. Stern, a professional photographer since graduating from Art Center College of Design in 1979, has been working in the entertainment industry with The Walt Disney Co., Warner Brothers Studios, Universal Studios, and Sid & Marty Krofft Pictures among others. He has photographed executives, celebrities, products, architecture and created special visual effects. In 1995, he added digital imaging solutions to his repertoire. In 2000 while working on a project for Disney's California Adventure he honed his skill set as a digital restoration expert and continues working today on a variety of other projects. In addition to beta testing hardware and software for several companies, Michael is also adjunct faculty at Brooks Institute of Photography in Ventura, CA as an instructor in digital imaging, reflective metering techniques and location lighting for budding photojournalists. Finally he has produced customized Photoshop tutorials for working professionals who need precise, clear information, presented in an innovative way.

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  • Posted January 28, 2010

    Build a Better Photograph: A Disciplined Approach to Creativity is not your boring old "tec heavy tome" but a fresh approach to being a more creative photographer.

    Michael E. Stern's new book, Build a Better Photograph: A Disciplined Approach to Creativity is loaded with life lessons, advice, technical and creative methodology, and much more. Something every aspiring and professional photographer should read.

    This is not a tec heavy tome but a well-balanced book about the business of creativity. There are many things to be learned from Michael's expertise, from how to create composites to what life is like when you have to deal with the corporate world.

    Michael's natural teaching ability delivers information in an interesting and easy-to-read way. His enthusiasm for his craft and his never-ending quest to be better at all things photographic come through loud and clear. As all good teachers wish to do, it makes the reader want to be better as well.

    To some people, the words "disciplined" and "creativity" are mutually exclusive. Michael has combined them into a tangible action that allows him to always be in control of his product. He describes some of the methods that work for him. Some are straight forward, and some may seem out there. But the true gift of this book is that it teaches how to ask the correct questions and apply the answers in a disciplined way.

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