Nov 3rd


Within The Frame, Within Top Ten.


You could have knocked me over with a feather (whatever that means) when my publishing team emailed me yesterday morning to let me know that Within The Frame was chosen by as one of the best books of 2009 in Arts & Photography. It came in 5th, after Joe McNally’s Hotshoe Diaries, Scott Kelby’s Digital Photography Book, Volume 3, a tattoo book by Kat Von D, and PostSecret by Frank Warren. So in a rare moment of rather self-conscious horn-tooting, let me just sound my barbaric WoOt! from the rooftops of the internet. (ahem, woOt!)

This kind of thing doesn’t get old, I have to tell you. I’m still a kid in a candy store about all this stuff. Eyes wide and hardly able to take it in. People think you write a best-selling book and that all this stuff is just life as usual. It’s not. I still think one day they’re all going to wake up and realize they’ve mistaken me for some other photographer of the same name. So until then, these moments are going to seem pretty surreal.

Huge thanks to you all who support my habit by buying these books and telling others about them. I’m so grateful. Please be sure to buy and promote VisionMongers with the same zeal because I’ve just committed to buying an island in the South Pacific and this banana republic ain’t going to pay for itself. :-) Seriously, thank you; I’m humbled by this kind of thing. I still get giddy  and say stupid things around Kelby and McNally, so it’s a little weird to be in their illustrious company.

To give you an idea of why this is so cool to me; when I was in grade 7, I entered a school-wide cartoon contest. I drew a wicked cartoon. And I won second place. Which would have rocked except that I was the only one that entered. I’m still bitter but this kind of thing eases that old pain just a little :-)

The rest of the list is HERE on

Comments (74)
  1. Andy Wilson

    November 3, 2009 at 1:15 am

    Congratulations David, richly deserved. It is an excellent book and I am looking forward to Visionmongers and V&V.

  2. dani

    November 3, 2009 at 1:16 am

    Wow – and a woOt from the other side of the world :-) Congrats, David!

  3. David Stanhill

    November 3, 2009 at 1:36 am

    Congratulations, I am really enjoying reading the book.

  4. November 3, 2009 at 1:50 am

    Well deserved!
    Congrats from Iraq…

  5. November 3, 2009 at 1:59 am

    Rightly so! I was just about to do a blogpost on my blog about the book, but I see that you don’t need it anymore :-)

  6. Matt

    November 3, 2009 at 2:07 am

    Congratulations! It’s well deserved.

  7. November 3, 2009 at 2:15 am

    Congratulations David! Very cool!

  8. peter berg

    November 3, 2009 at 3:37 am

    as above – great job David.

  9. Dan

    November 3, 2009 at 3:41 am

    Great stuff David, congratulations. I have the #1 and #2 books as well, and honestly, I would rate yours higher then both. I loved Hot Shoe Diaries, and Kelby’s book was a good source of information and tips as well. But I didn’t learn as much now get near the inspiration as from Within The Frame. I may not have gotten to be a better photographer reading it, but definately a more concious one, and more self critical.

  10. Eli R.

    November 3, 2009 at 3:59 am

    Congratulations, well deserved. Kelby and McNally – great books – the are more famous and thus sell more… but that’s about to change, isn’t it! I’ve bought five copies of my favourite book so I’ve done my share :-)
    Keep it up!
    Eli Reinholdtsen

  11. November 3, 2009 at 4:00 am

    Congratulations David, your success is well deserved.

  12. Bryan

    November 3, 2009 at 4:01 am

    David – your place in the amazon top 10 is very very well deserved. Within the frame is one of those books that you don’t want to end. The photography and writing is first class and has changed my photography for the better. I’m looking forward to visonmongers and please don’t stop writing books!

  13. Yves

    November 3, 2009 at 4:25 am

    Congrats David. Well deserved.

    I bouhgt your book and McNally’s at the same time and prefered yours.

  14. Ron Carroll

    November 3, 2009 at 5:02 am

    Good stuff, David. Nicely done. We’re happy for you.

  15. November 3, 2009 at 5:06 am

    Well deserved! Great book and I kinda of feel you’re the kind of guy who deserves this stuff. I’ve bought the book, will buy the next and bought all your e-books, but don’t be scared I’m not a stalker! ;)

  16. Mike

    November 3, 2009 at 5:07 am

    Please allow me to offer my congratulations, as well, David. I enjoyed WTF immensely, hope you’ll keep ‘em coming!

  17. Kristy

    November 3, 2009 at 5:07 am

    Congratulations!!!! This is by far my favorite photography book ever! Anxiously awaitng your next one as well as your next e-book. Keep up the great work!

  18. November 3, 2009 at 5:13 am

    Congrets!!! You deserve it! To my opinion this was the best book i’ve bought in years, it really inspired me!
    So thank you again!
    Greetings from the Netherlands,

  19. November 3, 2009 at 5:27 am

    Congratulations David! For all you’ve given myself and so many others in that book alone, you deserve all you receive & more!

  20. Kathy

    November 3, 2009 at 6:11 am

    David, this is well deserved!! I agree with several previous comments; that I learned more from WTF than any previous photo book (and I have many). That’s partly because it was so well written and inspiring that I read EVERY WORD, but in addition, the images are inspiring too!!

  21. November 3, 2009 at 6:12 am

    I’m going to agree with Dan above: while the books above yours on the list may be a good source of information, WTF is a book that really makes you stop and think about creativity and photography in a whole new light. It’s the kind of book that forces you to ask yourself why you take pictures, what your goal is with photography, and how you can make it better. It basically makes you introspect and ask yourself, “why do I bother taking pictures?” In my opinion, no how-to book will ever stand against a why-bother book.

  22. Kathleen Andersen

    November 3, 2009 at 6:13 am

    Congratulations, David. Well-deserved and I’m looking forward to more from you. I’ve got Joe’s book and learnt a lot more from yours.

  23. Gale

    November 3, 2009 at 6:16 am

    Congratulations on your cartoon and the book thing is cool, too. :)


  24. JVL

    November 3, 2009 at 6:22 am

    Alright, I’ll work your deal for this Island, but only if you promise that, if the technology becomes available, you clone and breed dinosaurs on it.

    Then Younes and I will come and “shoot” them. (Sick! Not like a Safari!)

    But seriously (I can be serious), congratulations, there is no doubt in my mind that this was well deserved through your own talent and hard work. I peddle your wares as often and as forcefully as I can, and it only helps that you create more of it. The world is a better place today sir, because you wrote something inspiring; not a lot of people accomplish that in a lifetime. Well done.

    The trick is that everyone’s hoping you do it again.

    I have faith brother. Well done.

  25. November 3, 2009 at 6:23 am

    Way to go. I am with Dan and Matt. I learned a whole lot from your book. When does the seminar tour and the kelby training videos come out? :-) PS. Are you going to publish the cartoon?

  26. November 3, 2009 at 6:28 am

    Adding my congrats! And it’s remembering experiences like the cartoon thing that keeps us humble! ; ).

  27. November 3, 2009 at 6:41 am

    Huge “barbaric” congratulations to you David! Well done!

  28. João Pedro Silva

    November 3, 2009 at 6:51 am

    Not a surprise to me. Awsome inspirational book! Brilliant well witten and thought provocative. “Criativity” leads to success!
    Congratulations! Very well done!

  29. scott hume

    November 3, 2009 at 7:25 am

    send your business card and the information from Amazon to the judge from the contest. the occasional vindictiveness is healthy…kind of…sorta…okay even if it is not do it anyway and gloat!

    oh yeah, congrats by the way!

  30. Rob

    November 3, 2009 at 7:52 am

    Congrats David! Much deserved along with a few more barbaric WoOts.

  31. November 3, 2009 at 7:56 am

    Congratulations and toot away (your horn that is)! ;-)

  32. Stuart Sipahigil

    November 3, 2009 at 8:08 am

    Congratulations, David. As others have said, it’s well deserved. Within the Frame has obviously inspired many folks in their photographic journey — I know it has for me — and that’s something to be proud of.

  33. November 3, 2009 at 8:09 am

    Congratulations David. Nice to see someone in your niche being successful – and a Canuck too!

  34. November 3, 2009 at 8:32 am

    congrats! I just finished WtF on Sunday and it blew me away – I learned so much! It’s no surprise amazon picked it for their list. Can’t wait for Visionmongers!

  35. Jim Orr

    November 3, 2009 at 8:39 am

    What they said – you know, the comments above. Me, too.

    You grew up so fast – We knew you when, back in The Day. I remember you saying that your time in 7th Grade were the 3 happiest years of your life!

    Your images tell a story, they resonate with us lurkers and wannabes. This award also means, my friend, that your words, also carefully selected and merged to express your thoughts, resonate with us as well.

    Know this – that during each day, there are people all over the world reading one of your books and saying: “Yeah!! Yeah!! – I get it!!”


    PS – please take the time to fix your Random Numberr Generator. I had the perfect Comment Number for the Wacom Tablet Giveaway, and yet…

  36. November 3, 2009 at 9:02 am

    For the record, I have other books on that list, and yours is their better. In fact, it’s the best photography book of 2009. It’s full of motivation, confirmation and inspiration. It’s the first book that, until its bettered (big if there), I’ll recommend to anybody wishing to read about photography.

  37. anita

    November 3, 2009 at 9:03 am

    WTF was hands-down the best book I read (and re-read) in 2009. Thanks for writing about the “WHY” …it changes everything. Congratulations, …and many more!

  38. November 3, 2009 at 9:36 am

    I know it’s been said many times already, but you definitely deserve a huge congratulations!!! I also agree with those that have said they would put your book at the top of the list (I love McNally, so that really would be a close race, but I think you edged him out). You are quickly becoming the “go-to” source for inpiration and instruction. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

    The only thing we all ask in return…. continue to give us more!

    More books! I know “VisionMongers” is coming out in just a couple weeks, but we want more!

    More eBooks! I know that “Chasing the Look” will be out soon, but we still want more! (for those who haven’t taken the time to read David’s 3 eBooks… you are missing out on a tremendous value. The same exceptional content and inspiration that we expect for a “couldn’t be better” price of $5 each… David has had several specials running at various times that will help you get them even cheaper. It’s almost like he’s giving them away!)

    More free content! You are doing an amazing job with this. The has really become one of the best resources available to photographers. So maybe this is more of a “keep it coming” type of thing.

    More video content! The “Within The Frame Podcast” was terrific! We want more!

    More contests and giveaways! I haven’t won one yet… so keep them coming!

    So those are the demands we (the readers and followers) put on you… in return… we will continue to thank you, appreciate you, and tell the rest of the world just how great you are. Sound like a deal?

  39. Alan

    November 3, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Way to go Dave… Thanks for opening the window to your photo world and letting us look in. I’ve learned and am still learning in fact, from you books and podcasts. Keep up the good work, and you do deserve the recognition without a doubt. Now, when do we all get to visit the island? :-)

  40. November 3, 2009 at 10:01 am

    Congratulations – this is big success, especially as WtF is not the 999th technical guide but tackles the much more difficult field of vision and motivation.

  41. November 3, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Embrace this because it is well deserved and hopefully more recognitions to come your way. Your book takes a unique perspective, damned hard to find these days, and at the same time is beautiful enough that even a non-photographer (if such a beast exists) would gain immense pleasure from flipping through its pages. Congrats!

  42. November 3, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    The popularity of the book is directly attributable to “genuine conversation” you have with the reader.

  43. November 3, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Congratulations! It’s on my Amazon Wishlist and I hope to get my hands on a copy soon

  44. November 3, 2009 at 1:17 pm

    Congratulation. I have read the book several times and the information never gets old. Can hardly wait for the new one. Your the best.

  45. DJC

    November 3, 2009 at 1:18 pm

    Fantastic, Dave! I am not surprised – it is a wonderful resource. Congratulations!

  46. Conrad

    November 3, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    It has been said before, but I will say it again, and it is well deserved. Congratulations David!!

  47. November 3, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    Congrats David!

    I bought Within the Frame, and I am currently reading it!!!



  48. Joe

    November 3, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    Congrats. It’s well deserved!

  49. November 3, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    Congrats Dave!
    I’ve asked my girlfrind to get this for me for my birthday (on Monday). If she doesn’t get it for me, I’ll just have to buy it myself!
    Also, love the e-books too.

  50. November 3, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    Ditto to all of the above, David but most of all, it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. Every good thing that has come your way is because your heart is in the right place. You inspire us to better photographers every day through your blog and WTF is the icing and the cake.

    I haven’t hesitated to recommend it to every one of my photog friends and without exception, they have all thanked me for it. So I thank you and wish you nothing but the best for VisionMongers–here’s to two books on the 2010 Best of List!

  51. November 3, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Congratulations, David! The recognition is fully deserved.

  52. tanya

    November 3, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    WTF!!!! with a title like that it was bound to be a raving success!! i’m glad i could contribute to the hooplah…and even more…i am honored to know you personally and atest to your coolness…(even if you did come 2nd place in grade 7) Thanks 4 remembering the little people :) heh heh

  53. November 3, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Many congratulations David. Well deserved. I can’t wait for this book. Good to see you getting this kind of accolade for your publishing. Bravo!

  54. November 3, 2009 at 10:46 pm

    Congratulations. Maybe now Kelby and McNally will get a little giddy and say a few stupid things in your company. Seriously, it is a wonderful book and you deserve the accolades.

  55. November 3, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    Well done David! Just bought 3 of your e-books (very good stuff) — thanks so much for all that you contribute to the art of photography and sharing as you learn!

    Can you tell me, is Within the Frame available anywhere in digital format? I am a missionary serving in Russia, no local bookstores :(

  56. November 4, 2009 at 4:13 am

    Always so encouraging to see good people finish first (well top ten anyway)! :-)

  57. November 4, 2009 at 4:37 am

    Very well done David. Within the Frame is the first book I recommend when someone wants to know the “why” of imaging making. The “how” books are numerous but the “why” ones, in my opinion, are most important. Grats to you David and keep up the fantastic work.

  58. Gerrard Williams

    November 4, 2009 at 5:29 am

    This just confirms what the rest of us have known for quite a while. Congratulations David, well deserved.

  59. November 4, 2009 at 5:29 am

    Very well done David. Within the Frame is the first book I recommend when someone wants to know the “why” of image making. The “how” books are numerous but the “why” ones, in my opinion, are most important. Grats to you David and keep up the fantastic work.

  60. November 4, 2009 at 5:56 am

    lol Thank you for loving what you do and sharing it with us! You are appreciated.

  61. Shaker

    November 4, 2009 at 8:06 am

    Congrats! WTF is definitely one of the best photography & overall book I read this year. Cheers.

  62. Ann

    November 4, 2009 at 8:28 pm

    Congratulations. Am waiting for my copy to arrive from Fishpond. Can’t wait to read it. Also recently bought your 3 ebooks and like them a lot.

  63. November 5, 2009 at 9:15 am

    David, Great job. I always recommend your books to my readers. I can’t wait to get my hands on VisionMongers.

  64. Kati Debelic

    November 5, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    Congrats David, totaly deserved. I got my public library to purchase it- here in Port Moody. When I told them it was a local author, her face lit up and she was all for it. So far I enjoy the easy reading and the moments of reflection it offers. Thank you!

  65. November 7, 2009 at 3:35 am

    I received this as a present from a friend in Belgium and loved it—your writing and photography really resonated with me. It’s thoughtful, insightful, considered work and I love it. Thanks!

  66. November 13, 2009 at 1:38 am

    […] Within the Frame – as Top 10 Check out my friend, David’s book available here. […]

  67. November 17, 2009 at 8:08 am

    […] Originally posted here:  Within The Frame, Within Top Ten. […]

  68. December 2, 2009 at 6:15 pm

    Congratulations! The phrase “it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy” comes to mind. :-)

  69. Carsten

    August 23, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    Hello David,

    Greetings from Toronto. Finally, finally. I went ahead and bought ‘Within The Frame’. I should have it in my hands by tonight when I get home. Long, long overdue! Cheers