If you don't yet have a digital camera, you're probably the last person on your block with that dubious distinction. But don't despair: Millions of these magical devices are hibernating in dark desk drawers, abandoned because new owners couldn't adequately master their labyrinthine instructions. The editors of LIFE and veteran photojournalist and photography book author Joe McNally set out to rectify that situation. Their guide to digital photography takes readers through every step; from learning terminology to selecting the right camera for you; to shot selection, focusing, lighting, and composition; to taking, saving, and transmitting pictures. LIFE Guide to Digital Photography features easy-to-understand step-by-step instructions and helpful pictures to enhance your camera skills. A one-stop snapshot college.
LIFE Guide to Digital Photography: Everything You Need to Shoot Like the Prosby Joe McNally, Editors of Life
Photography has been the business and the passion of LIFE since the original weekly magazine's inception in 1936, and it continues to be the business and passion of LIFE Books and LIFE.com in the new millennium. But photography has surely changed during these many decades. The rigs and gear of old have given way-first slowly, then all at once-to sleek miracle machines that process pixels and have made the darkroom obsolete. The casual photog puts eye to lens, sets everything on auto and captures a photograph that is . . . perfectly fine.
One of LIFE's master shooters-in fact, the final in the long line of distinguished LIFE staff photographers-was Joe McNally, and he has always believed that with a little preparation and care, with a dash of enthusiasm and daring added to the equation, anyone can make a better photo-anyone can turn a "keeper" into a treasure. This was true in days of yore, and it's true in the digital age. Your marvelous new camera, fresh from its box, can indeed perform splendid feats. Joe explains in this book how to take best advantage of what it was designed to do, and also when it is wise to outthink your camera or push your camera-to go for the gold, to create that indelible family memory that you will have blown up as large as the technology will allow, and that will hang on the wall forevermore.
As the storied LIFE photographer and photo editor John Loengard points out in his eloquent foreword to this volume, there are cameras and there are cameras, and they've always been able to do tricks. And then there is photography. Other guides may give you the one, two, three of producing a reasonably well exposed shot, but Joe McNally and the editors of LIFE can give you that, and then can show you how to make a picture. In a detailed, friendly, conversational, anecdotal, sometimes rollicking way, that's what they do in these pages.
Prepare to click.
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Meet the Author
Joe McNally is an internationally acclaimed photographer, whose career has spanned 30 years and included assignments in over 50 countries. In the mid-1990s Joe served as Life magazine's staff photographer, the first one in 23 years. He is a recipient of the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award and has been honored by Pictures of the Year International, World Press Photo, The Art Directors Club, American Photo, Communication Arts, and Graphis. He conducts numerous workshops around the world as part of his teaching activities. One of Joe's most notable projects, Faces of Ground Zero - Giant Polaroid Collection (which he later published with the editors of LIFE), has become known as one of the most significant artistic responses to the tragedy at the World Trade Center.
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