More Books, But Not Mine, I swear.

In Books by David22 Comments

LegendaryH-PolishI get a kick out of this one. It’s a spread from my first eBook, TEN, and it’s in Polish. Published by Galaktyka, the same publishers who will be publishing Within The Frame in Polish as well. Any idea how wierd it is to see your own book in a language you can’t read? This is the beautiful face of the Legendary H.

I want to point you to two books, but I swear I didn’t write them. The first is relevant for you VisionMongers out there. The second for creative photographers of all stripes, and some of you are going to be surprised by the recommendation, I think.

inboundThe first is called Inbound Marketing, by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah. I’m about half-way through it on my Kindle and it’s a refreshing book on a topic often reserved for slimy snake-oil sales and SEO hucksters. It’s an exploration of marketing tactics involving Google, Blogs, and social media, it’s an easy read, and there’s some good stuff in it, especially if those three topics give you a bit of a head-ache. It’s written for mortals, not tech geeks, and the authors’ overuse of the word remarkable, while as tedious as my own overuse of the word vision, serves to remind us of the value of being exceptional, and creating & engaging in conversations about us and our products – which is what so-called web 2.0 marketing is all about. More information on Inbound Marketing on HERE; It’s a good book for further study if the stuff in VisionMongers got you started in this direction.

hdrThe second is Trey Ratcliff’s A World In HDR. I got my copy of it last week, and I’m almost done. Some of you know that I don’t do HDR (High Dynamic Range) images. I’ve never even come close. It’s not my thing any more than giant polaroids are my thing. However, the backlash against HDR is also not my thing. Is it as overused as any other of the treatments or styles used as the Un-Suck Filter of the Week to rescue otherwise poorly conceived images? Sure it is. Sometimes. But that doesn’t mean the use of HDR should be tossed out any more than sharpening should be tossed out because too many people abuse it.

Where Trey’s book succeeds for me is in two areas. The first is the images. They’re presented large and I’m enjoying looking at them. They stir my paint, and if you’ve been around these here parts for the last while you know I put a lot of stock in creative paint-stiring. The other thing the book does well is address some of the Whys behind HDR and creative photography as much as the Hows.  If you love HDR, this book might give you the tools and the mindset to begin using HDR more mindfully, and it will, I think, give you some inspiration. If you aren’t a fan, it might be time to put the disinterest aside and look at the book all the same, not in the interest of becoming a convert, but in seeing what you can learn.

Here’s the interesting thing about HDR images – a lot of photographers seem to dislike them, it’s a love it or hate it kind of thing, sadly. But the general public, the non-photographers out there, love them. And we should be asking why. Anyways, I love my copy. You can get more info on Trey Ratcliff’s A World In HDR HERE on


  1. Perspective, as I mean it, is a size relation between objects in different distances from the viewer, and it’s exactly the same as what you call “compression”. We are not talking about lowering an axis of view etc. It’s not about the math – it’s about understanding some basic rules of human perception and knowing what is a cause and what is an effect.
    But from the other hand, I didn’t have a chance to read you e-book in English, so maybe it sounds different than a Polish translation of it and maybe there was no reason to write here at all. Merry Christmas, David.

  2. Author

    Jay – Again, I’m not discussing perspective and never have in these regards. Compression, or the illusion of it, is not the same as perspective. I’m not interested in the math, only in the ability of people to use their equipment in ways that create the images they envision. In the end I think the battles we chose to fight say more about us than the issue at hand, and this one’s not one I care to argue about.

    You’re welcome here anytime. Just don’t get too bent out of shape about convincing me about anything. So let’s put this one to rest because at this moment the only thing rivaling my apathy is my desire to celebrate the holidays in peace. Merry Christmas.

  3. I’ve just read your e-book (well, a Polish translation of it) – someone pointed it as a source of those “perspective nonsenses”. I’m really tired of explaining it – that’s why I reacted (maybe too) impulsively. Anyway,, it doesn’t matter if you look at it from mathematical or perceptional point of view – a picture taken from the same distance with 35mm lens on APS-C sensor and 50mm lens will look exactly the same in terms of perspective or perspective compression. There will be a difference in DOF, bokeh and distortion which affects the overal look, but it has nothing to do with a perspective.

  4. Author

    Well, Jay, we’re way off topic here but I never said focal length affects perspective. I said it affects compression, and while you’re talking mathematically I’m talking in terms of perception. Put down the boxing gloves and the calculator and go enjoy your camera. There are forums aplenty to argue in, this blog isn’t one of them.

  5. It’s the distance, not the focal length what determines perspective, therefore 35mm on 1.5x cropped sensor gives the same frame with identical “planes compression” as 50mm on 135 sensor. There is no such a thing as lens related perspective – if an angle of view is the same, your distance has to be the same to get the same frame and that means the same planes relations. Always.

  6. Author

    Well aren’t you a ray of sunshine, Jay? Thanks so much for setting me straight; hard to argue with that classic “I’m right and you’re wrong” but you could have made it completely irrefutable had you also stuck your tongue out and taunted me with “nya, nya, nya nya nya.”

    In this day and age where dialogue seems a lost art, you’re a rare breed. Thanks for taking the time to really clarify things.


  7. What you wrote about perspective compression and sensor sizes is completely wrong. If you don’t understand how it works, don’t try to explain it to anybody.

  8. It´s funny. Yesterday i was thinking about translating some photography blogs articles or books to spanish. Here it´s impossible to find those exciting and useful readings about our passion (mmm. photography, of course). A lot of people here doesn´t understand english, and i always try to explain them all the things i learn around this and other blogs.
    Yes guys, you re more famous and we read it all your words more that what you believe…
    (please excuse my english, it´s more difficult to write it than to read it).

    Congratulations for your blogs, i learn a lot.
    Now i´m looking for reach your books!!

    Leo F. Ridano
    Lago Puelo, Patagonia Argentina

  9. On the subject of HDR, because I have little to say about anything else, Trey’s started up an offshoot site that I think folks should check out it’s an edited sampling of HDR’s so everything that’s uploaded can be rejected; leaving you a lot of the paint stirring without the suck.

    Just a taste for those on the fence, or maybe for those in the other extreme who aren’t as open to “art” as maybe they’d like to believe.

    F.D. I have some work on hdrspotting.

  10. “L’âme du photographe”, “The Photographer’s Soul”, I like that title, it’s deep. As far as the translation, I understand, it takes time, and you have to know which markets are worth translating for. You’re right about the e-books, it would be great if they were available in different languages. The Strobist’s David Hobby Photo 101 tutorial is actually translated in many languages, but the cool thing is that he didn’t do the translations himself. The books were translated by members of his strobist community. Maybe you could do something similar.

  11. Author

    @Claude – Within The Frame just came out in France as “L’âme du photographe” The other print books may or may not, depending, I suppose, on the whims and markets of foreign publishers. The eBooks would be great in french, or any language, it’s simply a question of finding someone to do it. And by “do it” I mean the translation, the publishing, the marketing, etc. I’d do it myself but, well, you know…

  12. David, correct me if I’m wrong but why aren’t your books in French? The Quebecois are missing out.

  13. Author

    @Rob-L – Duly noted and corrected. Thanks. We Canadians have a fondness for vowels and will stuff them into words as fast as Americans can take them out 🙂

    @Dharmesh Shah – Thanks for chiming in and showing that you walk the talk.

  14. Thanks for reading “Inbound Marketing” (I’m one of the co-authors).

    We’re particularly pleased that so many different kinds of people have gotten value out of the book (we deliberately wrote the book to appeal to “mere mortals” and not geeks).

    Dharmesh Shah
    Co-Author, “Inbound Marketing”

  15. Though I have never messed with HDR myself, I enjoy HDR by togs such as James Neeley:

    I also seen a display in a coffee shop on “The Drive” the other month. I really enjoyed the HDR touch on photos of Vancouver streets and landmarks. Some how it gave the images a groovy retro feel, perhaps, because of it’s illustrative look.

  16. This excerpt reads a little differently in Polish than in the English version. Are you sure you wanted all those things about H made public?

  17. I’m an idiot…I had to read the whole intro to realize I had misread the word “Polish,” the language, as “polish,” to have or give a high sheen or gloss.

    Back to my reading…

  18. I know what you mean about being published in other languages. When someone posted a tutorial I had written in Russian, I decided I was famous.

    I actually follow the Stuck in Customs blog. He is ninja at HDR. Maybe I shall by the book after seeing your review.

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