Book Review - Shooting in Sh*tty Light

No, I'm not kidding,  That's the title, or more correctly the first part of the title, "Shooting in Sh*tty Light : The Top Ten Worst Photography Lighting Situations and How to Conquer Them".  The book is written by Lindsay Adler and Erik Valind.  Both are professional photographers, Lindsay known for fashion and Erik for lifestyle.  Both are respected educators and I have taken classes with both of them.  Given their expertise, I was curious about what the book would reveal.

The book does what the title promises.  It provides a series of potential solutions to some truly execrable lighting situations that aspiring photographers will discover themselves in.  The book is graded for Beginner to Intermediate photographers and I concur.  I confess that I learned nothing new, but I am not the audience for whom this is written.  I did very much like how clean the explanations are, and how the authors have avoided the death spiral into techno babble.

As has been written at length, there are four stages of learning.  This book is for the photographer aspiring to get better.  If you think most all of your images are stunning, you aren't there yet.  If you are at the level where you think most of your work needs improvement, you are in the right place where this book can help you.  While the contents tend to focus on people photography, as is consistent with most other training, the concepts and solutions are practical widely beyond just people.  Moreover, the authors do not take you down the road of gear bankruptcy.  Your local photographic sales person isn't thrilled by the advice here, as it does not involve buying tons of gear.  The tools used are simple reflectors, foam core, radio triggers and off camera flash cables.  The explanations are nicely done, and while others have criticized the book for being repetitive, I believe that the critics miss the point that a single solutions can be used to solve many different problems.

The book is written in plain language and also has a comprehensive glossary as well as a nice appendix explaining in more detail the simple gear that the authors talk about.  For $26 CDN, it's a worthwhile addition to your photographic skills library.  If you purchase through the link in this post from Amazon, you help support The Photo Video Guy and I sincerely appreciate that.

If you'd like to see Lindsay Adler live, she is featured at a Henry's event on September 12, 2015.  Follow this link for more information.