Ten Tips and Tricks for the Nikon D7000

In addition to delivering great image quality, exceptional low light/high ISO performance, and rugged construction, the Nikon D7000 is an extremely sophisticated camera that can be highly customized to work exactly how you want or need it to.  Its autofocus system and metering system can be set up and tweaked according to your preferences, its buttons and dials can be assigned and customized for your most-used functions, its frame rates can be adjusted, its white balance fine-tuned, and much more.  I’ve spent a lot of time with the Nikon D7000 as I researched and wrote my e-book user’s guide to the D7000 called Nikon D7000 Experience, and here are the some of the top “tips and tricks” I’ve discovered for setting up and using this powerful dSLR (in no particular order):

(Looking for additional tips for the Nikon D7100? New post here.)

Nikon D7000 tips tricks book guide download how to learn
Detail of the Nikon D7000 – photo by author

1. Take Control of your Autofocus System: In order to always ensure that the camera autofocuses where and how you want, you need to take control of your AF system.  Use AF-S Autofocus Mode and Single Point AF Autofocus Area Mode for still subjects, and use AF-C Autofocus Mode and Dynamic Area AF or 3D-Tracking Autofocus Area Mode for tracking moving subjects.  Select your desired AF point so that the camera focuses on, or begins to track, your intended subject.  Press the AF Mode Button and then turn the Command and Sub-Command Dials to change the Autofocus Mode and Autofocus Area Mode as you view the settings on the top LCD screen.  There is so much more you can do with the AF system, including selecting the number of active AF points and determining exactly how it tracks moving subjects.  I wrote an entire previous post that goes into more detail about the settings and capabilities of the D7000 autofocus system.

2. Set up your Dual SD Memory Card Slots: The two memory card slots of the D7000 can function in a couple different ways, including using one for RAW and the other for JPEG files, saving all your images to both cards simultaneously, using the second card as overflow when the first one fills up, or saving stills to one and movies to the other.  You can set this up in the Shooting Menu under “Role played by card in slot 2.” To set how the cards function for saving videos, use the Shooting Menu > Movie Settings > Destination.

3. Set or Create a Picture Control for your JPEG Images and Movies: If you are shooting in RAW (NEF) or JPEG and will be post-processing your images in Photoshop, Lightroom, or using the Nikon software, then you don’t need to worry about Picture Controls.  If that is the case, set the Picture Control for Standard or Neutral and that way the images that you view on the camera’s rear LCD screen will be close to how they will appear in the actual RAW image file.  However if you are not post-processing, you will want the images to come out of the camera looking as you want them to, so you will need to set, customize, or create a Picture Control that best creates your desired look.  Adjust the contrast, saturation, brightness, and sharpening to achieve the look you are after.  Save the Picture Controls you have created to access them later.  You can even create your own styles using the included software, or find them online and download them.  There are styles to be found online that recreate the look of various roll films including Kodachrome and Velvia.

4. Verify that you Haven’t Over-Exposed Your Highlights: View your histogram along with your image during image review or image playback to confirm that you haven’t over- or under-exposed your image.  To see the Overview image-view that shows the histogram, press up or down on the Multi-controller during image playback to flip through the different available views.  The histogram will show you if your highlights or shadows have run off the graph, indicating that those areas of the image contain no detail in the highlights or shadows other than pure white or pure black.  In the RGB Histogram and Highlights view, the over-exposed highlights will also blink in the tiny image, indicating that those areas of the image have been “blown-out” and that there is no detail other than pure white in those parts of the image.  If you have over- or under-exposed your image, then…

5. Make use of Exposure Compensation: Explore the various options in Custom Setting b3 to customize exactly how exposure compensation works.  Set it so that you press the Exposure Compensation Button first before turning a dial to change EC, or have it set so that you can just turn a dial to quickly and directly change EC.  You can even select which dial you use with Custom Setting f6.  And you can set it so that the EC amount that you dialed in stays set for the subsequent shots, or that it is automatically reset to zero, depending on which controls you use to set EC.  This last option is the most sophisticated and most flexible, and may be the best one to learn and use.  Using this option, On (Auto reset), you can choose to turn a dial to directly adjust EC, but your EC setting will be reset when the camera or exposure meter turns off .  This is because you can still continue to use the Exposure Compensation Button with a Command Dial to set EC, but by setting it this way, EC will not be reset when the camera or meter turns off.  EC will only be automatically reset if you set it directly using the dial without the button.  So if you wish to use EC for just one shot, you can adjust EC with just the dial.  But if you wish to take a series of shots with the same adjusted EC, you can use the button/ dial combination to set it more “permanently.”  Pretty powerful stuff!  This is why you got the D7000, right?  So that you can take advantage of these sophisticated controls!

Brief Commercial Interruption: Are you already getting a little confused?  Want to learn more about these and other features of the D7000?   I recently completed an e-book user’s guide for the Nikon D7000 called Nikon D7000 Experience that explains all of this and much more.  The guide covers all the Menus, Custom Settings, functions and controls of the Nikon D7000, focusing modes, exposure modes, shooting modes, white balance, etc., PLUS when and why you may want to use them when shooting.  As one reader has said, “This book, together with the manual, is all you need to start discovering all the camera’s potential.” It will help you to take control of your camera and the images you create!  Learn more about the features and settings discussed in the ” tips and tricks” here and much more.  To read more about the book, preview it, and purchase it, see my Full Stop bookstore website here!
Nikon D7000 tips tricks book download manual
Nikon D7000 Experience by Douglas Klostermann

6. Fine-Tune the Exposure Metering Modes: Using Custom Setting b5, you can fine-tune the exposure for each of the different Exposure Metering Modes (Matrix, Center-Weighted Average, Spot), all independently.  For example, if you find that Center-Weighted metering is slightly under-exposing all the time, fine-tune it for +1/3 or +2/3 using Custom Setting b5.  This tweaks the exposure behind the scenes, independent of exposure compensation.  You can still continue to use EC as always, on top of this fine-tuning.

7. Lock Exposure and Focus Independently: Sometimes you need to lock the focus distance before recomposing, or lock the metered exposure setting for one shot or for several shots in a row.  Or sometimes you need to lock both focus and exposure for the same shot, perhaps independently of each other.  By default, the Shutter Button locks focus when you half-press it and exposure is determined when you fully press the Shutter Button to take the shot.  You can use Custom Setting c1 to have the Shutter Button half-press also lock exposure, or better yet use Custom Setting f3 to use the Fn Button for locking exposure.  You can even set it so that you either press and hold the Fn Button or just press it and release.  Then you can use Custom Setting f5 to set the AE-L/AF-L Button for locking focus.  This is known as back-button focusing and that way you can lock these settings independently.  Learning to use back-button focus and even exposure lock can be awkward at first, and you may not fully understand why it is necessary.  But I highly recommend starting to experiment with them, then hopefully getting in the habit of using them all the time – especially if you shoot a lot of action scenes or situations where you are rapidly taking lots of photos (perhaps a wedding and reception), or if you are recomposing your framing between when you focus and when you take the shot.  You may soon find them both indispensable and wonder how you once managed without them!

Nikon D7000 tips tricks how to instruction book download user guide learn
Detail of the Nikon D7000 – photo by author

8. Reverse the Values of the Exposure Indicators: In the viewfinder and on the top LCD screen of the Nikon D7000, the exposure indicator shows the negative values on the right and the positive values on the left.  Perhaps you find this as counter-intuitive as I do.  Ever since grade school, negative values have always been to the left!  Plus with the histogram, the brighter values are shown on the right of the graph, and thus to make use of exposure compensation you would dial to the negative side to correct for over-exposed values, thus moving your histogram to the left.  So why do you have to move the value to the right on the exposure indicator?  It can obviously cause great confusion!  Use Custom Setting f9 to reverse the indicators to the more logical orientation.

9. Put Your Most Used Settings in My Menu: Instead of digging into the menus and Custom Settings all the time to find your most used settings, you can create your own custom menu called My Menu, which is then quickly and easily accessed with the Menu Button.  You can even decide what order to list the items in.  Set up My Menu by selecting Choose Tab in the Recent Settings menu, and select My Menu.  Then Add Items and Rank Items in the order you desire.  You can add items from most all of the Menus and Custom Settings Menus.  Determine what settings you are digging into the menus to look for and change most often, and put them in My Menu, such as maybe Format and White Balance (for more WB options and fine-tuning).  I recommend you include Format since you should re-format your memory card each time you are ready to clear off that card, and not just Erase All.  However, put Format lower down in My Menu so that you don’t have a tragic memory card accident.

10. Make Use of the Other Exposure Modes: While Matrix Metering will do an excellent job of determining the proper exposure of an image the majority of the time, there are some situations where you may wish to use the other exposure modes – Center-Weighted Metering and Spot Metering.  This includes dramatically backlit situations, subjects with a dramatically dark background, scenes that contain a wide range of highlights and shadow areas, or other dramatic lighting situations.  It is best to turn to one of these other modes to ensure you properly meter for the subject and don’t blow the shot.  If the background is not dramatically lighter or darker than the subject, but you still want to ensure that the camera’s metering system concentrates on the subject and not the entire scene, use Center-Weighted.  This is a situation where you may wish to lock in the exposure and recompose if your subject is not going to be in the center in the final framing.  You can even use Custom Setting b4 to change the size of the area being metered with Center-Weighted metering.  If the background is very dark or light and you want the camera to ignore it and just meter on a certain critical area of the scene, use Spot metering.  Again, meter for that critical area, lock the exposure, and recompose.

10a. Quickly Use Spot Metering to Determine a Critical Exposure:  You can use Custom Setting f4 to assign the Depth-of-Field Preview Button to Spot Metering so that you can quickly meter for a precise area without having to take your eye from the viewfinder and change the Metering Mode.  Versatile Custom Settings such as this are a big part of what makes the D7000 such a powerful, customizable camera, and this demonstrates why it is worthwhile to completely understand and take advantage of these advances capabilities.

There are many more great features and settings of the Nikon D7000 to take advantage of.  You have a powerful camera in your hands, so why not learn to take advantage of its advanced features?!  Have a look at my e-book guide Nikon D7000 Experience to learn more about the settings, features, and controls mentioned here, and so much more.  Learn to take control of your camera and the images you create!

Also, please know that there aren’t really any tips or tricks for better photography.  To improve your photography, simply learn your camera inside and out and learn the techniques of dSLR photography (with my e-book!) and then practice, practice, practice taking images, study the results, and look at and learn from the work of talented photographers.

Have a look at that post I mentioned earlier about the autofocus system of the D7000, and another post I’ve written which discusses the Menus and Custom Settings of the D7000.  Some of the same items are addressed, but there is also much additional information to be found in the older posts.

Was this post helpful?  Please let others know about it by clicking the Facebook or Twitter sharing buttons below, linking to it from your blog or website, or mentioning it on a forum.  Thanks!  Want to help support this blog with no cost or effort?  Simply click on the Amazon and B&H Photo logos on the left side of this page to go to those sites and make your purchases.  They will then give me a little referral bonus!

Best-Selling, Most Popular Guide to the Nikon D5100 Currently Available

My e-book user’s guide for the Nikon D5100, called Nikon D5100 Experience, is the best-selling, most popular guide to the camera currently available!  How did I learn this?  Because it is the only guide to the D5100 currently available!

Nikon D5100 book manual download how to instruction tutorial

Through the flexibility of independent e-publishing, Nikon D5100 Experience is available months before any of the other guides for this dSLR are available.  OK, so maybe one of the other ones is selling more in pre-orders – I have no way of knowing that.  But for all the guides currently available…mine is on top!  And is in the top spot for Kindle Hot New Releases in the Photo Equipment AND Photo Reference categories.  And I’m quite proud of it.

Even if it wasn’t the only one currently available, I still think it is the most helpful guide out there, explaining not only the features, controls, and functions of the camera, but more importantly when and why to use them in your photography.

You can learn a lot more about the guide on my Full Stop bookstore website here:
http://www.dojoklo.com/Full_Stop/Nikon_D5100_Experience.htm

Want to become an affiliate and earn 25% commission for selling the PDF version of this e-book?  See here for complete details on how to sign up as an affiliate and make money referring sales of Full Stop e-books on your blog or website!

 

Nikon D5100 Experience e-book user’s guide Now Available!

Nikon D5100 User’s Guide

My latest eBook user’s guide, Nikon D5100 Experience – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation with the Nikon D5100, is available for purchase!  This guide will not only help you to learn the functions, controls, and custom settings of the D5100, but also when and why to use them.  As one reader has said of the Nikon Experience guides, “This book, together with the manual, is all you need to start discovering the camera’s full potential.”

Go beyond the Nikon D5100 manual and take control of your camera, the image taking process, and the photos you create.

Learn more about it, view a preview, and purchase it on my Full Stop ebook website:

http://www.dojoklo.com/Full_Stop/Nikon_D5100_Experience.htm

Nikon D5100 manual download book guide tutorial how to for dummies instruction Nikon D5100 Experience ebook

Developing Your Photographic Vision

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that I’ve written several times about humanitarian and travel photographer David Duchemin.  His blog, books, podcasts, and images were all extremely helpful and inspiring when I was starting my own journey as a humanitarian and culture photographer, and he continued to inspire me as I expanded into writing and ebooks.

David’s focus is on photographic vision rather than “gear” or equipment.   While he is an admitted gear junkie and agrees that “gear is good,” he constantly stresses that “vision is better” for working towards and achieving your photographic goals and for enjoying the photographic process.

In addition to the three books he has written Within the Frame – The Journey of Photographic Vision, Visionmongers – Making a Life and Living in Photography, and Vision and Voice – Refining your Vision in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, (and the upcoming Photographically Speaking – A Deeper Look at Creating Better Images) David has written a number of ebooks in his Craft and Vision series.  Each one is full of beautiful images plus instructional and inspirational text that can help you in your photographic journey when you seemed to have reached that point where the images that are coming out of your camera aren’t matching up with the vision you have of them in your mind.  Whether your challenges are due to composition, subject matter, post-processing technique, or lack of inspiration, there is a Craft and Vision ebook there to help!

Craft and Vision also offers ebooks by other photographers and authors who share a similar perspective or are experts on other techniques such as video or black and white photography.  The latest offering is called The Power of Black and White in Adobe Lightroom and Beyond, by Piet Van den Eynde.  I just received my copy and plan to write a bit more about it after I have a chance to delve into it, but in the meantime you can learn more about it on the Craft and Vision website.  Oh, and did I mention, all of the Craft and Vision ebooks are only $5 each!  But don’t think this is some brief e-pamphlet – The Power of Black and White is 100 spreads!  That would be 200 pages in a “real” book!

Craft and Vision David Duchemin The Power of Black and White

 

 

Go Beyond the Nikon D5100 Manual with this D5100 e Book User’s Guide

Nikon D5100 User’s Guide

My latest e-book, a user’s guide for the Nikon D5100 digital SLR, is called Nikon D5100 Experience – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation.  This guide goes beyond the manuals to help you set up and learn the camera, plus more importantly when and why to use the various controls, features, and custom settings when photographing.  As one reader has commented about my previous Nikon D7000 guide, “This book, together with the manual, is all you need to start discovering the camera’s full potential.”

Nikon D5100 book guide manual tutorial how to for dummies instruction Nikon D5100 Experience ebook

This instant download Nikon D5100 e book is for those who wish to get more out of their camera and to go beyond Auto and Program modes and shoot in A mode and S mode. To get you started, it includes explanations and recommended settings for all Playback, Shooting, and Setup Menus, Custom Settings, and Movie Mode settings of the D5100.  It covers basic dSLR camera functions and exposure concepts for those new to digital SLR photography, and explains more advanced camera controls and operation, such as using the various metering modes and exposure compensation for correct exposure of every image, controlling autofocus modes and focus points for sharp focus of still or moving subjects, and utilizing dramatic depth of field for professional looking photographs.  This guide builds on the information provided in the manuals and explains essential settings and information to help you get out there shooting in the real world.

You can preview Nikon D5100 Experience at the following link. The preview shows the Table of Contents and Introduction, a sample D5100 Menu Settings page, a sample Custom Settings page, and a sample text page.

http://www.dojoklo.com/writing/Nikon-D5100-Experience-Preview.pdf

Nikon D5100 Experience not only covers the various settings, functions and controls of the Nikon D5100, but it also explains when and why to use them for your photography. The guide focuses on still-photography with a brief introduction to the movie menus and settings to get you up and running with video. Sections include:

  • Setting Up Your D5100 – All of the D5100 Custom Settings and Playback, Shooting, and Setup Menus, with brief descriptions and recommended settings for practical, everyday use. Set up and customize the advanced features of your dSLR to work best for the way you photograph.
  • Aperture Priority Mode (A) and Shutter Priority Mode (S) – How and when to use them to create dramatic depth of field or to freeze or express motion.
  • Auto Focusing Modes and Area Modes and Release (Drive) Modes – How they differ, how and when to use them to capture sharp images of both still and moving subjects. Also how and when to use focus lock.
  • Exposure Metering Modes of the Nikon D5100 – How they differ, how and when to use them for correct exposures in every situation. Also how to make use of exposure lock.
  • Histograms, Exposure Compensation, Bracketing, and White Balance – Understanding and using these features for adjusting to the proper exposure in challenging lighting situations, and setting custom white balance.
  • Composition – Brief tips, techniques, and explanations, including the creative use of depth of field.
  • The Image Taking Process – A descriptive tutorial for using the settings and controls you just learned to take photos.
  • Photography Accessories – The most useful accessories for day-to-day and travel photography including accessories specific to the D5100.
  • Introduction to Video Settings – Some basic settings to get you started

This digital guide to the Nikon D5100 is a 70 page, illustrated PDF document that expands upon the information found in the D5100 manuals, to help one begin to master their dSLR and learn to use the Nikon D5100 to its full capabilities!  It is packed with helpful information applicable to the new and intermediate dSLR photographer – to begin to turn you into an advanced digital photographer!

Author: Douglas Klostermann
Format:
PDF – Instant Download – read on your computer, print on your printer, transfer to your iPad, Android, or other tablet, transfer to your Kindle, Nook or other e-reader.
Page Count: 70 pages, illustrated
Price: $10.99

(plus 6.25% sales tax for residents of Massachusetts)
Secure payment with PayPal or Credit card

Buy Now with PayPal! or Buy Now

This PDF version is 8.5″x11″ and can be read on your computer, printed, or loaded to your tablet, e-reader, or iPad or iPhone following these instructions on the FAQ page

Other versions of Nikon D5100 Experience e-book:

The Kindle edition is available on Amazon.com
The Nook edition is available on BarnesandNoble.com
The iPad and iPhone version is available through Apple’s iTunes or through the iBooks App on your mobile device.

What Readers are Saying about Nikon D5100 Experience:

I read it from front to back in one sitting, playing with the camera as I went along, and I found it covered all the major things I was having trouble with.  It left me much more confident about focusing and exposure issues particularly.  If you are new to DSLRs or want to bypass hours of hunting through manuals, this is great.  There are many sensible real-world suggestions for configuring the camera that are very helpful, the author writes clearly and concisely, and his approach is accessible and friendly.  If you’re having trouble getting going with your new camera, I think this is well worth it.
Jay M.

Great manual! This book made it much easier to operate my new Nikon D5100.  It basically expands on the manual that comes with the camera and tells you what each setting is and what you should set it at.  It also gave me some great pointers on Aperture priority mode, Shutter and ISO. Highly recommended!
-GK

From beginners to experienced users: This guide is very useful for beginners to experienced users.  When you buy this kind of camera you want to understand the best ways to freeze moments which is exactly explained in this book.  This book is written in a human way by an experienced photographer who gives you the tips you need to create a beautiful picture – how to prepare your camera, create shortcuts, or activate such options to make you efficient in the field.  I would recommend this e-book to every new Nikon D5100 buyer!
-Oliver

What Readers are Saying about Doug’s previous guide, Nikon D7000 Experience:

This book, together with the manual that came with your camera, is all you need to start discovering the full potential of the D7000.
-Max M.

It’s the first guide I’ve read which has taken me through all the settings in an understandable way. I now feel that I have control over the camera.
-Peter S.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants to get a quick start to using the D7000.  Manuals are nice, but this eBook highlights the important information and gives a quick easy to understand explanation of most all of the functions and controls.
-Ray M.

I found the Nikon manual good for understanding how to set things up but not much on the why – this book really focuses on the “why.”   I would like to thank you for saving me time – now I’m confident  that my camera is well tuned!
-Benoit A.

This manual is a clearly written, concise and useful explanation of the rationale for the seemingly infinite and often confusing settings options for the D7000. Used in conjunction with the Nikon manual I feel a bit more confident in understanding how to at last proceed in getting better photographs.
-WLS

It’s clear, concise and gets to the heart of the camera’s multiple and often confusing options. Very highly recommended – for experienced user and beginner alike. As previous reviewers have remarked, the official manual is very good on what to do, but not so clear on why.
-GSA

Learn to use your D5100, quickly and competently, to create the types of images you want to capture. The Nikon D5100 is a sophisticated and customizable tool, and this guide explains how to start to use it to its full capability.  It will help you begin to take control of your camera, the image taking process, and the photos you create.

See and buy the Nikon D5100 with 18-55mm Lens on Amazon $899

See and buy the Nikon D5100 – Body Only on Amazon $799

Any other purchase on Amazon.com (use this link or any of my Amazon links to help support this blog.  Thanks!)

I have also created a video introduction to the D5100 autofocus system:

Nikon D5100 Unboxed – Hands On

The Nikon D5100 has arrived!
Nikon D5100 dslr camera photo dummies preview review book how to user guide unbox box manual compare vs
Photo by author – copyright 2011 – please do not use without permission!

I’ll be putting together a user’s guide ebook for the D5100, Nikon D5100 Experience, following in the tradition of my popular and well received Nikon D7000 Experience ebook.  See here to learn more about the new book, and be sure to check back in the upcoming weeks to see when it will become available!

The Nikon D5100 Reference Manual is available online here.  My Nikon D5100 Experience user’s guide builds upon the information found in the manual to help you learn the features, settings, and controls of your camera, plus when and why to use them in your photography!

I wrote a post comparing the new D5100 with the D7000, D90, and D3100, which can hopefully help you decide which model is the right dSLR for you.  Below are some brief hands on notes from the first couple days of use.  I leave the image quality reviews to the pixel-peepers, or better yet DPReview and dxomark.

Nikon D5100 Hands on Experience: The camera body of the D5100 fits nicely in the hand, and is a little bit taller than the D3100, so the pinky doesn’t fall off the grip quite as easily.  The rubber gripping surface and rubber thumb spot work nicely, and help retain the grip on the body, even when holding it at your side or carrying it around without a strap, and the light weight of the camera also adds to this ease of portability.  Those who prefer the ergonomics of a larger, more solid feeling camera body will have to look at the D90 or D7000.  The Live View switch, placed on the top of the camera at the mode dial, feels and sounds a little plasticy, but works find, and the record button for movies is conveniently placed on the top of the camera, near the shutter button.  The FN button, on the front near the lens mount, can be customized to adjust one of a number of settings quickly, like image quality, white balance, HDR, or +RAW (to take a RAW file in addition to a JPEG if set on just JPEG).  I prefer to make it an ISO button.  The side mounted rear LCD screen is a definite improvement over the bottom mounted, limited screen of the D5000, and rugged and durable.  The view through the viewfinder is a bit tiny and cramped, as is typically the case in this level of dSLR.  Changing settings is quick and easy with the “i” button and rear LCD screen.  Overall, the body, feel, controls, and LCD screen of the D5100 make for a great image taking experience.

See and buy the Nikon D5100 with 18-55mm Lens on Amazon $899

See and buy the Nikon D5100 – Body Only on Amazon $799

First images from the D5100, unedited:
Nikon D5100

Nikon D5100

Top 10 Accessories for Your Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D

I have updated this post for the Canon Rebel T5i / EOS 700D and the Rebel T4i / EOS 650D, which you can now view on this blog here:

Top Ten Accessories for the Canon T5i / EOS 700D

All of the accessories still apply to the T3i and the T2i (EOS 600D, 550D).

 

Celebrate “Read an E-Book Week”

To celebrate “Read an E-Book Week” (March 6-12) as well as the release of my newest eBook Canon T3i Experience, some of my previous e books are on sale, including Your World 60D for the Canon 60D and T2i Experience for the Canon T2i / 550D.

Just go to my Full Stop ebook bookstore, (www.dojoklo.com/Full_Stop/) where you can learn all about the eBooks.

Canon EOS 60D book user guide Canon Rebel T2i / EOS 550D book user guide

Also available, the brand new Canon T3i Experience as well as Nikon D7000 Experience.

Canon T3i book Canon 600D book Canon T3i Experience by Douglas Klostermann Nikon D7000 book Nikon D7000 Experience ebook

Learn how to set up and customize the menus, settings, and functions of your Canon T3i / 600D, Nikon D7000, Canon 60D, or Canon T2i / 550D.  Then start to learn to use your powerful dSLR to its full potential so that you can improve your photography and consistently take better photos!  Download your ebook instantly and start learning right away.

Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D e Book User’s Guide

Go beyond the Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D manual with my new book, now available!

T3i Experience – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation – an eBook user’s guide and tutorial for the Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D.

Learn to use your Rebel T3i / EOS 600D, quickly and competently, to create the types of images you want to capture. The T3i / 600D is an advanced tool, and this guide explains how to use it to its full potential. Take control of your camera, the image taking process, and the photos you create.

Canon Rebel T3i EOS 600D book manual download for dummies Canon T3i Experience Douglas Klostermann book guide tutorial how to instruction

This instant download Canon T3i / 600D book is for those who wish to get more out of their camera and to go beyond Full Auto and Program modes and shoot in Av mode and Tv mode. To get you started, it includes explanations and recommended settings for all Menu settings, Movie Mode Menu settings, and Custom Function settings of the T3i/600D. It covers basic dSLR camera functions and exposure concepts for those new to digital SLR photography, and explains more advanced camera controls and operation, such as using the various metering modes and exposure compensation for correct exposure of every image, controlling autofocus modes and focus points for sharp focus of still or moving subjects, and utilizing dramatic depth of field for professional looking photographs.

You can preview T3i Experience at the following link. The preview shows the Table of Contents and Introduction, a sample T3i/600D Menu Settings page, a sample Custom Functions Settings page, and a sample text page.

http://www.dojoklo.com/writing/Canon_T3i_Experience-Preview.pdf

Canon T3i Experience not only covers the various settings, functions and controls of this digital SLR, but it also explains when and why to use them for your photography. And it describes every T3i / 600D Menu setting and Custom Function setting, with recommended settings to get you started quickly, including Movie Mode menu settings. Note that it focuses on still-photography and not video except for a brief introduction to video menus and settings to get you up and running. Sections include:

  • Setting Up Your Camera – All of the Menu settings and Custom Function settings for the T3i / 600D, including movie mode menus, with brief descriptions and recommended settings for practical, everyday use. Set up and customize the advanced features of this dSLR to work best for the way you photograph.
  • Aperture Priority Mode (Av) and Shutter Priority Mode (Tv) – How and when to use them to create dramatic depth of field or to freeze or express motion.
  • Auto Focusing Modes and Drive Modes – How they differ, how and when to use them to capture sharp images of both still and moving subjects. Also how and when to use focus lock and back-button focusing.
  • Exposure Metering Modes of the Canon T3i / 600D – How they differ, how and when to use them for correct exposures in every situation. Also how to make use of exposure lock.
  • Histograms, Exposure Compensation, Bracketing, and White Balance – Understanding and using these features for adjusting to the proper exposure in challenging lighting situations.
  • Composition – Brief tips, techniques, and explanations, including the creative use of depth of field.
  • The Image Taking Process – A descriptive tutorial for using the settings and controls you just learned to take photos.
  • Lenses – Explanation of Canon lenses and choosing your next lens.
  • Photography Accessories – The most useful accessories for day-to-day and travel photography including those specific to this camera, plus recommended photography books.
  • Introduction to Video Settings – Some basic settings to get you started.

This digital field guide to the Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D is a 60 page, illustrated PDF document that builds upon the information found in the Canon Rebel T3i / EOS 600D manual, and will help one begin to master their dSLR and learn to use it to its full capabilities!

Author: Douglas Klostermann
Format:
PDF – Instant Download – can be read on your computer, printed on your printer, transferred to your iPad, Android or other tablet, Kindle, Nook, or other e-reader (see here for iPad/ iPhone transfer instructions).
Page Count:
60 pages, illustrated
Price: $9.99 Available Now!
(plus 6.25% sales tax for residents of Massachusetts)
Secure payment with PayPal or Credit card

Buy Now with PayPal! or Buy Now

 

Other versions of Canon T3i Experience e-book available for purchase:

The Kindle version is available on Amazon.com
The Nook version is available at BarnesandNoble.com
The iPad and iPhone version is available through Apple’s iTunes or through the iBooks App.

What Readers are Saying about Doug’s Previous Guide, T2i Experience:

Best Guide to using a T2i – I don’t know how I could fully take advantage of all the features the T2i has to offer without this publication! It’s well-organized, easy to understand, and succinct enough to keep your attention while still containing a wealth of tips and tricks to get the most out of your camera. I’m very happy that I found this guide.
-Nathan K.

Essential Travel Companion – Alas, a comprehensive and concise guide for hobbyists who desire to enhance their photography experiences. I highly recommend this guide to anyone who wants to ease out of auto mode and learn how to take high-quality photos. It brilliantly explains how to apply advanced techniques and tips, walks you through the daunting task of menu settings, and smoothly guides you through the image-taking process. The instructions and brief explanations are easy to follow and well organized. The guide is a portable class on digital photography! A must-have if you want to learn how to use your camera to its fullest advantage.
-Elizabeth J.

A Fantastic Book For Beginning T2i Users – This book has exactly the no frills condensed practical advice on camera settings that I was looking for. The author has a gift for separating the wheat from the chaff. I didn’t have a clue how to operate a digital camera, let alone know the definition of the technical terms. After reading this book, I now understand all the critical functions of the Canon T2i and how to take advantage of them. This is a book I plan to keep handy for years to come.
-TP

What Readers are Saying about Doug’s other dSLR User’s Guides:

This book, together with the manual that came with your camera, is all you need to start discovering all the potential of this camera.
-Max M.

It’s the first guide I’ve read which has taken me through all the settings in an understandable way. I now feel that I have control over the camera.
-Peter S.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants to get a quick start to using their camera. Manuals are nice, but this eBook highlights the important information and gives a quick easy to understand explanation of most all of the functions and controls.
-Ray M.

I found the (camera’s) manual good for understanding how to set things up but not much on the why – this book really focuses on the “why.” Prior to reading the book I was setting up my metering on Spot Metering thinking it was much better than Matrix (Evaluative) – the guide helped me understand why to use specific settings for specific needs. The Custom Settings sections helps to make firm decisions on how to apply settings by understanding the usage of each in addition to knowing how to set them up. I would like to thank you for saving me time – now I’m confident that my camera is well tuned!
-Benoit A.

This manual is a clearly written, concise and useful explanation of the rationale for the seemingly infinite and often confusing settings options. Used in conjunction with the (camera’s) manual I feel a bit more confident in understanding how to at last proceed in getting better photographs.
WLS

Canon Rebel T3i EOS 600D book guide manual tutorial how to instruction

Go Beyond the Nikon D7000 Manual with this D7000 e-Book User’s Guide

Nikon D7000 User’s Guide

I have completed a Nikon D7000 e book user’s guide, Nikon D7000 Experience – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation that goes beyond the D7000 manual to help you learn when and why to use the various controls, features, and custom settings of this powerful camera.  As one reader has said, “This book, together with the manual that came with your camera, is all you need to start discovering the full potential of the D7000.”

Nikon D7000 book guide manual download tutorial how to instruction Nikon D7000 Experience ebook

The Nikon D7000 is an incredibly powerful and customizable image-making tool, and in order to get the most out of it you will need to learn how to take advantage of its features, controls, and custom settings.  Like my previous ebooks, including the bestselling Your World 60D, Nikon D7000 Experience not only covers the various settings, functions and controls of the Nikon D7000, but it also explains when and why to use them for your photography. And it describes every D7000 Shooting, Setup, and Playback Menu Setting and every Custom Setting, with recommended settings to get you started quickly, including Movie Mode menu settings. Note that it focuses on still-photography and not video except for a brief introduction to video menus and settings to get you up and running. Sections include:

  • Setting Up Your D7000 – All of the D7000 Custom Settings and Shooting, Setup, and Playback Menu settings, including movie mode menus, with brief descriptions and recommended settings for practical, everyday use. Set up and customize the powerful advanced features of your dSLR to work best for the way you photograph.
  • Auto Focusing Modes and Area Modes and Release (Drive) Modes – How they differ, how and when to use them to capture sharp images of both still and moving subjects. Also how and when to use focus lock.
  • Aperture Priority Mode (A) and Shutter Priority Mode (S) – How and when to use them to create dramatic depth of field or to freeze or express motion.
  • Exposure Metering Modes of the Nikon D7000 – How they differ, how and when to use them for correct exposures in every situation. Also how to make use of exposure lock.
  • Histograms, Exposure Compensation, Bracketing, and White Balance – Understanding and using these features for adjusting to the proper exposure in challenging lighting situations.
  • Composition – Brief tips, techniques, and explanations, including the creative use of depth of field.
  • The Image Taking Process – A descriptive tutorial for using the settings and controls you just learned to take photos.
  • Photography Accessories – The most useful accessories for day-to-day and travel photography.
  • Introduction to Video Settings – Some basic settings to get you started.

This digital guide to the Nikon D7000 is a 63 page PDF document (also available in Kindle and Nook formats) that builds upon the information found in the D7000 manual, to help one begin to master their dSLR and learn to use the Nikon D7000 to its full capabilities.  The guide cuts through all the information thrown at you in the manual and focuses on essential settings and information to help you get out there shooting in the real world. It is packed with helpful information applicable to the new and intermediate dSLR photographer – to begin to turn you into an advanced digital photographer!

View a preview of it here.  The preview shows the table of contents, a bit of the intro, a page of the Menu Settings, a page of the Custom Settings, and a couple text pages.

Author: Douglas Klostermann
Format:
PDF – Instant Download – read on your computer, print on your printer, transfer to your iPad, Android, or other tablet, transfer to your Kindle, Nook or other e-reader.
Page Count:
63 pages, illustrated
Price:
$9.99
(plus 6.25% sales tax for residents of Massachusetts)
Secure payment with PayPal or Credit card

Buy Now with PayPal! or Buy Now

This version is a PDF format e-book, 8.5″x11″, which can be read on your computer screen, printed on your printer, taken with you on your laptop, and can also be read on the iPad, Android or other tablets, Kindle, Nook, or other e-readers.

 

Other versions of Nikon D7000 Experience e-book are available:

The Kindle edition is available on Amazon.com
The Nook edition is available at BarnesandNoble.com
The iPad and iPhone version is available through Apple’s iTunes or through the iBooks App

What Readers of Nikon D7000 Experience are Saying:

It’s the first guide I’ve read which has taken me through all the settings in an understandable way. I now feel that I have control over the camera.
-Peter S.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants to get a quick start to using the D7000.  Manuals are nice, but this eBook highlights the important information and gives a quick easy to understand explanation of most all of the functions and controls.
-Ray M.

This manual is a clearly written, concise and useful explanation of the rationale for the seemingly infinite and often confusing settings options for the D7000. Used in conjunction with the Nikon manual I feel a bit more confident in understanding how to at last proceed in getting better photographs.
-WLS

I found the Nikon manual good for understanding how to set things up but not much on the why – this book really focuses on the “why.”
-Benoit A.

This book, together with the manual that came with your camera, is all you need to start discovering the full potential of the D7000.
-Max M.

It’s clear, concise and gets to the heart of the camera’s multiple and often confusing options. Very highly recommended – for experienced user and beginner alike.  As previous reviewers have remarked, the official manual is very good on what to do, but not so clear on why.
-GSA

See and buy your D7000 on Amazon and help support this blog!

Nikon D7000 with 18-105mm kit lens on Amazon.com

Nikon D7000 body only on Amazon.com

Any other purchase on Amazon.com

“Available Light” Book Free Give-Away!

I am giving away a free copy of an excellent book about photographing in natural light, Available Light: Photographic Techniques for Using Existing Light Sources by Don Marr!!  Read on to see how to take part in the give-away.

CONTEST CLOSED!  The contest ended Nov. 8, 2010.  I will go to Random.org and have it select and announce the winner tonight (Nov. 9).

I recently came across this book and found it incredibly helpful.  Unlike most photo books that merely tell you about front lighting or side lighting or diffused overcast lighting and then don’t go into much practical detail, this book actually explains how to seek out, modify, and use natural light – in all its forms – to take better photos.  It demonstrates that off-camera flash is not necessary for better photos, even in less-than-ideal lighting situations.  I wrote much more about this book in my Essential Digital Photography Books post.

available light book
This book can be yours!The free copy of Available Light by Don Marr, donated by Amherst Media, photographed on my floor in the available window light.

I liked the book so much that I contacted the publisher, Amherst Media, and asked them for a copy that I could give away on my blog here.  They enthusiastically agreed, and I have just received the book from them.

How to Enter:
Just leave a comment for this post.  If you don’t see the comment form immediately below the post, look under the title of this post and click on where it says “… comments.”  Or just click HERE.  Put in whatever comment you want.  If you wish, let me know how you came across my blog (Yahoo/ Google search, Twitter, regular reader, etc.), and if you are a regular reader or plan to become one, let me know what you enjoy reading about here and what photography topics and/or equipment you would like to read more about.

I will leave this post open for comments for three weeks, until Monday November 8 at 11:59pm.  At that time all the comments will be numbered in the order they were received and posted.  They may not be published immediately as I have to approve them – in the order received – to prevent spam.  I will then use the True Random Number Generator on Random.org to choose a random number and select the winner.  Decision is final!  Contest is open to those with United States mailing addresses only! Good luck!

If you don’t win or just wish to check out the book Available Light on Amazon, you can click here or on the cover:

Also, while I have your attention, be sure to check out my new eBooks:

Your World 60D – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation with the Canon EOS 60D.  You can read more about it and purchase it in PDF format (also iPad compatible) here on my blog, or it is also available in the Kindle version on Amazon.

T2i Experience – The Still Photographer’s Guide to the Canon Rebel T2i / EOS 550D.  Learn more about it a purchase it in PDF format here, or in the Kindle version on Amazon.

Douglas J. Klostermann Photography Douglas J. Klostermann Photography

Coming Soon: Photo Book Give-Away!

Sorry, the give-away is now over!

If you read yesterday’s post about Essential Books for Digital Photography, you will see I am pretty enthusiastic about a couple photo books in particular.  One of them that I think is really wonderful, and which really opened my eyes recently, is Available Light by Don Marr.  I discussed it in depth in yesterday’s post, so I won’t repeat that here.  But anyway, I liked it so much, I contacted the publisher (Amherst Media) and asked them to send me a copy to use as a free give-away on my blog.  And they enthusiastically agreed to this!

So stay tuned for the free photo book give-away, which I will initiate as soon as I have the book in hand, hopefully sometime around Oct. 15.

Here is a photo I took immediately after reading the book, putting what I learned to use.  Notice the amazing glow of the 100% natural, available light.  This was taken on an afternoon with bright sunlight, by placing the subject under an overpass to control the direction and intensity of the light.

LSS natural light

Essential Digital Photography Books

There are countless books available about digital photography, ranging from general over-encompassing guides to specific texts on lighting or composition. Many of them discuss basically the same topics, and after reading and absorbing a few, you begin to pick up only a few new tips or pieces of knowledge here and there.

But I’ve put together a list of what I think are the best books for digital photography out there. These are the ones I believe you should read first, the ones that will give you the maximum bang for the buck, and which are consistently full of solid, useful information. They are divided into categories of Camera Guides for specific cameras, Digital Photography Guides for general information and composition, Lighting and Flash, and Post-Production for Photoshop and Lightroom.

You can click on each title to take you directly to Amazon.com. If you purchase through these links Amazon will reward me with a small referral fee, so I appreciate you helping to support my photography work and my effort of creating all these links!

Sections:

Digital Photography Guides
Camera Guides
Lighting and Flash
Post Production

 

Digital Photography Guides

Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson
I recommend this book throughout my blog for anyone who is new to digital SLR photography or ready to take their camera off Auto or Program and needs to learn and understand the relationship between aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. It is the go-to book to help you learn these essential settings, take control of your dSLR and image making process, and start to use aperture priority and shutter priority modes.

Learning to See Creatively by Bryan Peterson
By the same author as above. Once you have control of your camera after reading Understanding Exposure, you will quickly discover you need to learn how to make better compositions in order to take better photos. This book can help start you on this process. His best piece of advice is to think about and use different, more dynamic points of view in your photos. Taking a photo of a flower? What would the image look like from the flower’s point of view? Simple but brilliant.

The Photographer’s Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos by Michael Freeman
As I just said above, once you get control of your camera and its settings after reading some of the other camera and photo guides, you may wonder why your photos aren’t improving as quickly as you had hoped. That is when you need to turn to this book. It is a unique book for teaching photographic composition – which is an often difficult concept to teach beyond the basics. Most books explain concepts such as the rule of thirds or depth of field, but this book takes it to a whole new level. And he walks the reader through the example images describing the process and decisions he makes as he works a scene (which must be what inspired my Deconstructing the Shot series of posts!) It is a challenging book, and it takes some experience with working at photography and applying the basic composition techniques and experiencing specific problems and frustrations before one can get the most out of this book. So if it is too heavy for you at first reading, come back to it after you have worked at it some more. This is perhaps my favorite photography book, and I wish there were more out there that were as helpful as this one. I re-read it every few months to set these concepts into my brain.

The Photographer’s Mind: How to See and Shoot Better Digital Photos by Michael Freeman
Every time I read Freeman’s The Photographer’s Eye, I lament, usually aloud, “why doesn’t he have more books like this?” Then I did some more research and discovered an older book of his, Achieving Photographic Style, from 1984. It blew me away – it is just as good as Photographer’s Eye, but a bit dated in many ways, as it discusses the photographic trends of that period and it is pre-digital. Again, I lamented, “why can’t he update this book for today?” Well, my pleas appear to have been answered. His next book The Photographer’s Mind has just come out. I haven’t seen it yet, but I immediately ordered my copy from Amazon.

Pro Photographer’s D-SLR Handbook by Michael Freeman
This is a comprehensive handbook for everything about digital photography from equipment, lighting and accessories, to technical explanations of settings and concepts, to post-production including Photoshop and printing. It covers a lot of topics, but gives good, solid information. Like its title says, it is a handbook that is extremely handy to have as a reference guide for everything related to digital SLR photography. Essential for any serious intermediate dSLR photographer, whether you desire to be a pro or just have the knowledge of one.

The Digital Photography Book (Volume 1) by Scott Kelby
Scott Kelby’s series of books are good for the beginning or intermediate dSLR photographer. Some claim that everything they know about digital photography they learned from Scott Kelby. Other reviewers on Amazon don’t think he’s so great. Never-the-less, he doesn’t get caught up in technical explanations, but rather just tells you what settings and equipment to use and how to do something. The page-by-page brief topics each give starting points for anyone confused about the variety of subjects they may be trying to absorb from all the other books. For example, every Photoshop book explains Unsharpen Mask, but then leaves you totally clueless as to where to even start with the three sliders. Kelby simply tells you what numbers to use. (Actually that may have been from one of his Photoshop books, but that is the type of info he provides.) Keep in mind, all of his advice is intended as starting points. His word is not gospel, it is to help you begin and then you can experiment and learn from your own experience after that. These are not books to teach you the basics of digital photography, but are rather a collection of various, almost random tips about a wide variety of photo topics. Keep in mind, his instructions are not the only way to do something, and sometimes they are actually very round-about ways of doing things that can be done much more simply. His humor is annoying to some and the equipment he uses may be totally unnecessary for how you work, so take what you read with a grain of salt. As a studio photographer, Kelby is especially knowledgeable about flash and lighting. There are three books in this series, which can also be bought as a set, as seen below.

The Digital Photography Book, Volume 2 by Scott Kelby
See above description of The Digital Photography Book.

The Digital Photography Book, Volume 3 by Scott Kelby
See above description of The Digital Photography Book.

Scott Kelby’s Digital Photography Boxed Set, Volumes 1, 2, and 3 by Scott Kelby
See above description of The Digital Photography Book.

National Geographic Photography Field Guide: Secrets to Making Great Pictures, Second Edition by Peter Burian and Bob Caputo
This is a great general guide to photography, with insightful and useful nuggets of information from some of the best Nat Geo pros, like Sam Abell and Michael Nichols. However, it is a bit dated, from the films days at the verge of digital. But I feel it is still worth reading because the essentials of image making remain unchanged. The updated version is below, but I have not yet seen it, and it may be all new with different content. Maybe see if your library has this one.

National Geographic Ultimate Field Guide to Photography: Revised and Expanded by National Geographic
I haven’t yet seen this updated version, but based on the previous edition as well as the Travel Photography version, it is bound to be good.

National Geographic Ultimate Field Guide to Travel Photography by Scott Stuckey
This is an excellent introduction to most everything you need to know to work as a travel photographer with helpful information for both beginner and more advanced photographers that isn’t found in most other travel photography books. And it contains valuable contributions from several professional travel photographers like Bob Krist and Catherine Karnow. However, its title is annoying because it is not in any way a field guide. It is not designed as a quick and easy reference to any of the topics it covers, as the term field guide would imply, but rather it is a book to read before your travels, and a book to read to learn the realities of working as a travel photographer. It is also a book about how to take travel photos in the visual and editorial style of Nat Geo Traveler magazine. I highly recommend this book for someone who is truly interested in becoming a commercial travel photographer, as it competently and thoroughly covers numerous aspects of this vocation – technical, logistical, and perhaps most importantly, learning how to tell a story through photographs. Or if you don’t wish to become a pro travel photographer but want to learn to capture better travel images, it will be most helpful for someone whose travel style truly accommodates the time and effort if takes to make great travel images.

Within the Frame: The Journey of Photographic Vision by David DuChemin

VisionMongers: Making a Life and Living in Photography by David DuChemin

Rick Sammon’s Complete Guide to Digital Photography 2.0: Taking, Making, Editing, Storing, Printing, and Sharing Better Digital Images by Rick Sammon

Rick Sammon’s Travel and Nature Photography by Rick Sammon

 

Camera Guides

First, of course, I have to mention my e-book user’s guides! So far I have written one for each of these cameras:

Nikon D7000 Experience
Nikon D5100 Experience
Canon T3i Experience
Your World 60D
Canon 7D Experience
Canon T2i Experience

full stop dslr photo photography camera manual guide for dummies canon nikon

Plus a book for all other dSLR owners, Ten Steps to Better dSLR Photography

dslr learn improve autofocus exposure aperture shutter priority for dummies

You can learn more about them at my Full Stop ebook bookstore, (www.dojoklo.com/Full_Stop/). These guides go beyond the manuals to help you learn to use your powerful camera to its full potential so that you can improve your photography and consistently take better photos. The guides cover the settings, functions and controls of these advanced dSLR cameras, plus explain when and why to use them to improve your photography and your images. Aimed towards intermediate photographers, they also clearly explain basic dSLR camera functions and exposure concepts for those new to digital SLR photography. Take control of your camera and the images you create!

These guides are available in PDF versions as well as Kindle, Nook, and iBooks/ iTunes versions.

 

Canon 7D: From Snapshots to Great Shots by Nicole S. Young
This series of camera user’s guides explains everything in a way that is clear and easy to understand and put to use. They don’t get bogged down in confusing technical explanations, but instead present everything in a straightforward, user-friendly manner. The books explain not only how to use the camera, but how to use it to take better photos. Recommended for someone relatively new to digital SLR photography who wants to quickly learn to use their camera and improve their photography.

Nikon D5100: From Snapshots to Great Shots by Rob Sylvan
see above description for Canon 7D: From Snapshots to Great Shots.

There are also From Snapshots to Great Shots guides for every other camera out there including the Canon 60D, Canon G12, Nikon D7000, etc.

David Busch’s Canon EOS 7D Guide to Digital SLR Photography by David Busch
David Busch’s camera guides are all excellent books, and will help you really get to know and understand all the features and functions of you camera. They are clear and straightforward enough for the beginner, yet are also in-depth and technical for the intermediate and advanced dSLR user. Recommended as a more comprehensive and easy to understand manual than the one that comes with your camera.

David Busch’s Nikon D7000 Guide to Digital SLR Photography by David Busch
This is an all-encompassing bible for the D7000. If you wish to learn every single feature, setting, menu item, option, etc., this is the place to look. If you wish to learn all the essential features, how to use them in the real world, and be up and running with your D7000 quickly, start first with Nikon D7000 Experience before delving into this tome.

David Busch of course has guides for every other dSLR camera out there including the Canon 60D, Canon T3i / 600D, Canon 5D Mk II, and the Nikon D5100.

See all the David Busch Digital SLR Camera Guides.

 

Lighting and Flash

Available Light: Photographic Techniques for Using Existing Light Sources by Don Marr
This is a simple, straightforward book that immediately changed the way I see light and the way I photograph using natural light.  You often hear the idea of “taking your photography to the next level.”  This book doesn’t itself make that claim, yet it is one of the few photography books that can actually deliver that result.  It is short, easy to read and to understand, and immediately applicable to your work.  Many books discuss light – it’s direction, intensity, quality, softness, color – and you think, “Yeah! I’m keenly aware of different light and how it falls on my subject.”  But did that knowledge suddenly help you to take better photos?  Many books never fully take it the next step and really explain how to seek out, modify, and use this light.  You may or may not be able to then figure it all out on your own.  I thought I had until I read this book.

It actually guides you in exactly the right direction and truly helps to open your eyes to the intensity, direction, and quality of natural light, and then teaches you to work with it and modify it to create the softness/ hardness, direction, color, and intensity you want, whether you are working on an overcast day, at high noon, inside, outdoors, or any other type of situation.  It makes one suddenly aware of the existence and potential use of natural reflectors everywhere which will help give you the lighting you want:  a wall, the ground, a pole.  And it explains the important concept and effective practice of subtractive lighting, used to even-out or create the desired lighting instead of turning to flash to artificially add to existing lighting.  The concepts in this book are so obvious and intuitive I didn’t even write down a single note while reading it the first time.  Then the next week I used what I learned and took one of the nicest, best lit spontaneous portraits I have ever taken.

While many are happily joining the Strobist camp, this book offers a refreshing and viable alternative to that never-ending accumulation of lighting equipment and techniques, and should be read by off-camera-flash fans as well so they can learn to look for beautiful natural lighting alternatives that will give them as-good or even better images, before setting up their lighting equipment and knocking down the natural light in order to rebuild it artificially.  However the author is not against the (limited) use of flash, and certainly not against reflectors, and discusses their use in different situations.  I highly recommend this book to photographers of every level.  It is a wonderful book for beginners or intermediate photographers so that they can be aware of, understand, and use these concepts from the start, and it is just as helpful for advanced photographers who may intuitively practice some of the techniques, but will certainly become aware of even greater potential and opportunities in the use of available light.

As you can see, I’m pretty enthusiastic about this book. I even contacted the publisher and asked them for a copy that I could use as a free give-away here on my blog, and indeed they are sending me one! (The free give-away is now completed.)

On-Camera Flash Techniques for Digital Wedding and Portrait Photography by Neil van Niekerk

The Complete Guide to Light & Lighting in Digital Photography by Michael Freeman

 

Post-Production

The Adobe Photoshop CS5 Book for Digital Photographers by Scott Kelby
Scott Kelby is the founder and head of NAPP, the Photoshop users’ organization, so I don’t have any qualifications with the Photoshop and Lightroom recommendations as I did with his photo books above.

The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 Book for Digital Photographers by Scott Kelby

Adobe Photoshop CS4 How-Tos: 100 Essential Techniques by Chris Orwig

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 How-Tos: 100 Essential Techniques by Chris Orwig

And of course in able to make use of the Photoshop and Lightroom books, you are going to need the software!
Adobe Photoshop and/ or Adobe Lightroom 3 are the latest versions. Photoshop CS4 has the amazing and revolutionary content aware fill, which takes cloning and spot healing to a whole new dimension. And Lightroom has quickly become the tool of choice for photographers to work on their images.

(Descriptions of some of the above books still to come!)

Your World 60D – Canon 60D User’s Guide and Tutorial

Looking for a Canon EOS 60D book or tutorial to help you learn and begin to master your new dSLR? I’ve written an eBook user’s guide for the Canon 60D, called Your World 60D – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation. Learn to use the Canon 60D quickly and competently, and improve your photography and capture better images. The 60D is an advanced tool, and this guide explains how to start to use it to its full potential. Begin to take control of your camera, the image taking process, and the photos you create.

Canon EOS 60D book manual download for dummies user guide instruction tutorial Your World 60D

This instant download eBook guide is for those who wish to get more out of their 60D, and go beyond Auto or Program mode and shoot in Aperture Priority (Av) mode and Shutter Priority (Tv) mode. It covers basic dSLR camera functions and exposure concepts for those new to digital SLR photography, plus it also explains more advanced camera controls and operation, such as using the various metering modes and exposure compensation for correct exposure of every image, controlling autofocus modes and focus points for sharp focus of still or moving subjects, and creating dramatic depth of field for professional looking photographs. Learning to get the most out of a dSLR can involve a steep learning curve, and I believe my book can help you speed up that process.

See below for how to purchase.  You can preview Your World 60D at the following link. The preview shows the Table of Contents, Introduction, a sample Menu Settings page, a sample Custom Functions Settings page, and a sample text page.

Preview: http://www.dojoklo.com/writing/Your_World_60D-Preview.pdf

Your World 60D is a text-only PDF guide that builds upon the information offered by the camera’s manual and focuses on the essential functions and settings for real world 60D use. In addition to covering the various settings, functions and controls of the Canon 60D, its lessons explain when and why to use them. It also describes every Menu setting and Custom Function setting, with recommended settings, including Movie Mode menus. Note that it focuses on still photography and not video except for a brief introduction to menus and important video settings to get you started.

Sections include:

  • Setting Up Your 60D All of the Menu settings and Custom Function (C.Fn) settings, including movie mode menus, with brief descriptions and recommended settings for practical, everyday use. Set up and customize the advanced features of the 60D to work best for the way you photograph.
  • Aperture Priority Mode (Av) and Shutter Priority Mode (Tv) – How and when to use them to create dramatic depth of field or to freeze or express motion.
  • Auto Focusing Modes and Drive Modes – How they differ, how and when to use them to capture sharp images of both still and moving subjects. Also how and when to use focus lock and back-button focusing.
  • Exposure Metering Modes – How they differ, how and when to use them for correct exposures in every situation. Also how to make use of exposure lock.
  • Histograms, Exposure Compensation, Bracketing, and White Balance – Understanding and using these features for adjusting to the proper exposure in challenging lighting situations.
  • Composition – Brief tips, techniques, and explanations, including the creative use of depth of field.
  • The Image Taking Process – A descriptive tutorial for using the settings and controls you just learned to take photos.
  • Photography Accessories – The most useful accessories for day-to-day and travel photography
  • Introduction to Video Settings – Some basic settings to get you started

This digital field guide to the Canon EOS 60D is a 40 page, PDF format text-only document, full of helpful information applicable to the new and intermediate dSLR photographer – to turn you into an advanced digital photographer!  Begin to master your Canon 60D and start to use it to its full capabilities.

Purchase Your World 60D through PayPal here! (or click the PayPal or Credit card check-out button below)
This version is in PDF format, text-only, 8.5″x11″, which can be read on your computer screen, printed on your printer, taken with you on your laptop, and can also be read on the iPad.

Format: PDF – Instant Download
Page Count:
45
Price:  $9.99

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Other versions of Your World 60D e-book:

The Kindle edition is available on Amazon.com
The Nook edition is available online at Barnes and Noble
The iPad and iPhone version is available through Apple’s iTunes or through the iBooks App.

What Readers are Saying about Doug Klostermann’s dSLR User’s Guides:

This book, together with the manual that came with your camera, is all you need to start discovering all the potential of this camera.
-Max M.

It’s the first guide I’ve read which has taken me through all the settings in an understandable way. I now feel that I have control over the camera.
-Peter S.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants to get a quick start to using their camera. Manuals are nice, but this eBook highlights the important information and gives a quick easy to understand explanation of most all of the functions and controls.
-Ray M.

I found the (camera’s) manual good for understanding how to set things up but not much on the why – this book really focuses on the “why.” Prior to reading the book I was setting up my metering on Spot Metering thinking it was much better than Matrix (Evaluative) – the guide helped me understand why to use specific settings for specific needs. The Custom Settings sections helps to make firm decisions on how to apply settings by understanding the usage of each in addition to knowing how to set them up. I would like to thank you for saving me time – now I’m confident that my camera is well tuned!
-Benoit A.

This manual is a clearly written, concise and useful explanation of the rationale for the seemingly infinite and often confusing settings options. Used in conjunction with the (camera’s) manual I feel a bit more confident in understanding how to at last proceed in getting better photographs.
WLS

Your World 60D was originally, briefly titled Real World 60D. It is the same eBook. If you use the Canon Rebel T2i/EOS 550D, or Canon Rebel T3i/EOS 600D have a look at my eBooks for those camera, T2i Experience and Canon T3i Experience.

Canon 60D Tutorial

I have completed an eBook tutorial and user’s guide for the new Canon 60D, called Your World 60D – The Still Photographer’s Guide to Operation and Image Creation. Learn to use your 60D, quickly and competently, to create the types of images you want to capture. You can learn more about the Your World 60D eBook and how to purchase it here.

(The eBook was originally, briefly called Real World 60D – it is the same book.)

Great Photo Book

I’ve recently discovered the excellent book Blue Planet Run, which I came across after seeing photographer Rick Smolan’s TED lecture.  He’s the guy behind the “Day in the Life” series of photo books that were so ubiquitous awhile ago.  Anyway, Blue Planet Run is a book he created, full of amazing photos, statistics, and essays about the worldwide water crisis.  It was originally offered as a free e-book, and after a little hunting around, I found a pdf copy of it to download on RapidShare.  It seems to be virus free and is definitely worth having a look at, either in hard copy or e-version.

blue-planet-run-cover-page
Click cover for hard-copy version on Amazon