Firstly i have to admit this is the first time am reviewing a eBook or any book as that matter on my blog. I have been a regular follower of Craft and Vision series of ebooks and even more before it came into existence from David Duchemin’s Pixelatedimage ebooks era. There is lot of analysis i do before i pick up any books because i am one person who doesn’t get easily attracted to books and even if get to i dont spend more than 5 mins reading it even if buy one, ebooks are no big exception for it. But have to confess there hasn’t been one single ebook from C&V kitty which has made me think twice or something which i haven’t read anything less than 4-5 times. With the exception of the Print and Process series i have had a chance to go through each and every ebook of theirs. What grabbed my attention with their release this time was the inclusion of Landscape Photography as a topic of their ebook and who better than Michael Frye to author the same.
The first and very important thing that made me grab this book was obviously the author himself whom i have been following since quite a while and secondly this being a workflow book revolving around Lightroom – which am actually gradually migrating towards and learning it. Lightroom is one such tool which gives you most advanced non-destructive features in one single package. After reading the preview of the book i was convinced this is one of the ebook which i should definitely go for as a addon to my learning curve for Lightroom.
In this book Michael takes a very systematic approach in explaining the steps that he takes to process 5 of his class images and how he starts from a flat RAW image to a final masterpiece. Over the course of the book Michael gives loads of very handy tips to make sure you implement them to get the best and 100% output from your resulting image. The emphasis he plays for envisioning what should be end result or how the image should look makes a really lot of difference. One of the biggest learning for me from this ebook definitely has to be the use of Curves. I was always afraid of using curves and never knew how productive and effective it can be when used properly. The comparison of before and after images along with some reference images which Michael gives indicating what would have been the result if the slider was dragged further just adds as a substantiations to them-self. Second biggest learning from the book is the tip to start of from scratch value for Blacks, Brightness and Contrast. Didn’t knew before that a small change in the preset value can make a significant difference.
For the value of $5 this ebook is definitely a steal and is worth a look and I have promised myself to go back and re-look at some of my images and how they can be improved further by using the workflow and techniques mentioned by Michael.
Finally, to conclude Michael offers some age-old advice that one of the best ways to improve your photographs is by looking at good prints. Go to a gallery or museum and spend some time with the images, paying attention to the contrast, the color balance, the saturation and so on – which sounds really fair and apt to do.
PS: Click on the above image to be taken to C&V website for purchasing the ebook.
Update: DigitalPhotographySchool is offering some really nice limited period discounts on C&V ebooks which you can check it out for limited time on their website.
Shivakumar L Narayan
Founder & Team Member – Landscape Wizards