Craft and Vision

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Craft and Vision, publishers of many fine photography e-books, has just introduced a new, FREE e-book!  It is a collection of articles from various talented Craft and Vision authors/ photographer, and is intended, of course, to introduce you to their thoughts and writings and entice you to buy all the other Craft and Vision books!  This is not a bad thing, as the books are all excellent, and I’m certain you will find at least a couple, if not a handful that will appeal to you as well as help you improve your photography.

The FREE e-book, 11 Ways You Can Improve Your Photography, is available by clicking on its title or the image below.  You will be taken to the Craft and Vision site where, after getting your free book, you can view (and purchase!) all the other books.

The free book has several excellent articles discussing numerous aspects of making a photograph and improving your results including composition, exposure, making prints, self-assignments/ projects, and capturing the moment.  And it is no pamphlet…67 spreads, as in 134 magazine pages!

Authors include: David duChemin, Piet Van den Eynde, Andrew S. Gibson, Nicole S. Young, Alexandre Buisse, Stuart Sipahigil, Eli Reinholdtsen and Michael Frye.

To read my reviews or intros to other Craft and Vision books, have a look at my post Developing Your Photographic Vision as well as the other posts tagged “Craft and Vision.”

My lists of Peru and Cusco resources later in the post, click here: Peru – Cusco Resources

There are a couple Peruvian / Andean related books that have recently been published and which I both just finished reading:  the wonderfully woven travel stories, characters, and histories of Turn Right at Machu Picchu by Mark Adams, and a new print and process photography e-book from Craft and Vision called Andes by Andrew S. Gibson.

In the introduction to Andes, author Andrew Gibson shares that “Travel for many people is an unrealised dream. Things like the business of making a living, relationships and other constraints on finances and time can prevent people from turning dreams into reality. This eBook is for the dreamers, and I hope it inspires you to pick up your camera and go live out a dream or two.”  If after viewing his photographs of the people and places of Peru, Argentina, and Bolivia you aren’t yet fully motivated to undertake a similar journey, then reading Mark Adams’ Turn Right at Machu Picchu might just make up your mind.

A couple years ago I myself “picked up my camera to live out a dream” of exploring and photographing Peru, and to be honest, my life hasn’t been the same since.  The combination of volunteering, traveling, and photographing in Peru was a turning point that led me to seriously pursue photography as a profession, leave the 9 to 5 office life behind, discover the existence of an area of the craft called humanitarian photography, and to recognize and pursue many important but dormant goals in life.  If you read through the history of this blog, you should see that journey unfold.  Both Gibson and Adams pursued their dreams and goals, one through photography and the other through exploring the Inca ruins and history of Peru, and each came out of it with a book full of experiences worth sharing.

In Andes, Andrew Gibson presents the images he created, with both film and digital, on several trips to the Andes regions of Argentina, Peru, and Bolivia over a span of 6 years.  If you are familiar with his previous e-books such as The Magic of Black and White parts 1 to 3, you know he is a master of black and white, and all of the photos in this new book are black and white or toned monochome images.  The images capture the people, places, events, and sweeping landscapes of these regions, and the monochrome helps to express both the timeless nature or appearance of some of these places and their inhabitants, as well as the unique high altitude light of the mountains and altiplano.  At the end of the text, he includes the lens and camera settings details and short descriptions of the circumstances of each (see image below), as well as more detailed stories of his travels.  And for those interested in following in his footsteps, he includes practical advice for traveling and photographing in these countries.

For the first five days only, if you use the promotional code ANDES4 when you checkout, you can get the PDF version of ANDES, The Print & The Process Series for only $4 (or use the code ANDES20 to get 20% off when you buy 5 or more PDF ebooks from the Craft & Vision collection).  These codes are good until 11:59pm PST August 6th, 2011.  Learn more about Andes, Gibson’s other books, and all the Craft and Vision e-books on their website.

Back in 2008 when I was in Cusco, I met a real life explorer named Paolo Greer hanging out in the South American Explorers clubhouse.  He was preparing to publish an important article showing that Hiram Bingham was not the first outsider to “discover” Machu Picchu, and Greer was eager to tell any listener about the maps he uncovered in dusty archives that proved this.  I wrote a blog post about it at the time called The Real Story.  I didn’t think too much of it at the time, and people in Cusco aren’t too interested in Hiram Bingham so it wasn’t a big deal there – as they all know that Machu Picchu was never actually lost (Bingham himself met the farmers who lived ON the site).  But at the same time as I was running into Greer everywhere I went in Cusco, Mark Adams sat in his New York office and read about his findings, and it helped to stir his long-held desire to explore the Inca sites of Peru and re-trace Bingham’s footsteps, which eventually led to his marvelous book Turn Right at Machu Picchu.

Adams proceeded to travel to Cusco, find a dedicated and fascinating but somewhat extreme Aussie guide, and hike to the lesser known but important Inca sites that Bingham sought out as he searched for the last Inca stronghold Vilcabamba – sites like Espiritu Pampa, Choquequirao, and Llactapata.  Even though at first glance this book appears to be of the “desk-jockey heads into the wild, completely unprepared, with a crazy guide…mishaps ensue” genre, I quickly and pleasantly discovered it wasn’t. Adams expertly weaves several related stories together including a history of Hiram Bingham and his expeditions in Peru, the author’s own treks following Bingham’s footsteps, tales of his fascinating and capable Aussie guide, information about his Quechua guides and porters, a bit of Inca history, theories related to Machu Picchu and related sites and those who pursue the theories, and of course some self-depreciating travelogue humor.

After having spent time in and around Cusco and having read countless books on Incas and Machu Picchu, I still came away from this book learning much and having lots to ponder. It is a must-read for anyone who has visited or plans to visit Machu Picchu or hike the Inca Trail (or alternative trails). You will have a much greater appreciation of the Incas’ accomplishments, the hike, and the sites and people you encounter after digesting the information, experiences, and theories in the book.

Since either of these books by themselves should inspire you to want to immediately start packing and head to South America, and since they’ve cause me some intense nostalgia for my trips there, I’d like to also share some photographs from other talented photographers who have visited Peru either recently or decades ago, some of my Peru photos, and a couple of my resources for visiting Peru such as my recommended sites, stores, and restaurants in Cusco and my exhaustive list of Peru related books, movies, and resources.

When I was in Cusco in 2008 I met a young student and photographer named Peter Martin.  When I returned home and viewed his photos, I was fascinated at how we viewed and photographed the same country in such different ways.  I always zoomed in on the people, dances, and details while he captured more of the experience of “being there” in the moment or in a specific place.  Here are a couple examples, plus a link to more of them:


Peter Martin


Peter Martin

More Peru photos by Peter Martin: http://www.flickr.com/photos/peterfmartin/sets/72157606934173170/detail/

A couple years ago I also came across an amazing collection of photos taken by John Tucker when he was a Peace Corp volunteer in Peru in the late 1960’s.  His photos capture the out of the way places and people that most tourists to Peru still never get a chance to see, and some of these places and outfits would appear unchanged in those remote places today.  Tucker has a photographic sensibility that reminds me of Robert Frank and his powerful and somewhat similar images of Peru from the late 1940’s, as seen in his book Peru:  Photographs.

Like the Robert Frank photos, Tucker’s photos capture the indigenous people plus a strong sense of the communities, land, and environment where they lived and worked. Both photographers create a true connection to the place for the viewer.


John Tucker


John Tucker

More Peru photos by John Tucker:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/30427909@N04/sets/72157608888125285/detail/

Peru – Cusco Resources

Here are my Cusco / Peru resources I referred to:  my list of Cusco Places to Visit and the Fruits of My Labor of all the research and reading I have done on Peru including books, movies, and more.  Both are Word documents that will open up when clicked.  And then some of my Peru images from 2008.

http://www.dojoklo.com/FruitsofMyLabor.doc

http://www.dojoklo.com/CuscoPlacesToVisit.doc

A Deeper Frame by David duChemin new ebook craft and vision

As some of you may know, popular travel and culture photographer and blogger David duChemin suffered an accident in Italy a couple months ago, falling from a wall and shattering his ankles.  He spent about 40 days in a hospital, but has recently been released and continues to recover.

As he recovered, he worked on a new e-book, called A Deeper Frame, about achieving visual, physical depth in out photographs.  Here is the press release for this new book, now available from Craft and Vision:

New eBook Available: A Deeper Frame
David duChemin’s first eBook in over 6 months, A Deeper Frame, is an introduction to the discussion about re-introducing the illusion, or perception, of depth that is removed when the camera flattens the three-dimensional world into two. This insightful and inspirational eBook will help you understand principles that artists have understood for centuries, but that seldom get discussed in popular photography with more than a passing mention.

A Deeper Frame outlines seven ways that we can create more engaging images through the re-creation of a sense of depth in the flattened image to create photographs that feel immersive and invite a reader of that photograph to not merely look at the photograph but into or through the photograph.

A Deeper Frame is available now as a downloadable PDF for just $5USD.
A Deeper Frame by David duChemin new ebook craft and vision

 

Special Offer on PDFs
For the first five days only, if you use the promotional code DEEP4 when you checkout, you can have the PDF version of A Deeper Frame for only $4 OR use the code DEEP20 to get 20% off when you buy 5 or more PDF ebooks from the Craft & Vision collection. These codes expire at 11:59pm PST July 2, 2011.  Click here to go to the Craft and Vision website and make your purchase.

This just in from Craft and Vision and Nicole S. Young:
Craft and Vision e book micro stock Nicole S. Young photography

New eBook Available:
(micro)STOCK: From Passion to Paycheck by Nicole S. Young is a jam-packed guide to producing, managing, and marketing your photographs for digital distribution on the micro-stock market.

There is a lot more to stock photography than uploading a bunch of pictures and hoping for the best. Nicole shares her industry experience and knowledge to help you better navigate the rules, procedures, and best practices to creating quality, useful imagery for the micro-stock market. She explains how to build and deliver on a successful portfolio concept, takes the mystery out of the different types of stock, like rights-managed (RM) and royalty-free (RF), and shares the ins/outs of licensing and releases.

And it doesn’t stop there! She interviews four successful stock photographers and illustrates how others are making the big bucks online. If you’re looking to grow your revenue through digital sales then building a successful micro-stock business is a great way to do it!

Nicole S. Young is a full-time photographer and author specializing in commercial stock photography. She’s is an accredited Adobe Certified Expert (ACE) in Photoshop CS5 and is a Help Desk Specialist with the National Association of Photoshop Professionals. She is also the author of two print books Canon 7D: From Snapshots to Great Shots and Canon 60D: From Snapshots to Great Shots.

 

(micro)STOCK: From Passion to Paycheck is available now as a downloadable PDF for just $5USD here.
Craft and Vision e book micro stock photography Nicole S. Young

 

Special Offer on PDFs
For the first five days only, if you use the promotional code MICRO4 when you checkout, you can have the PDF version of (micro)STOCK for only $4 OR use the code MICRO20 to get 20% off when you buy 5 or more PDF ebooks from the Craft & Vision collection. These codes expire at 11:59pm PST June 11, 2011.

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