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Photographing the World Around You [Paperback]

5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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First Sentence
This book about observing and photographing the world around you is a gift to you from my students - hundreds and hundreds of photographers who have attended workshops over the years, contributed their own ideas, and tackled assignments with enthusiasm, imagination, and determination. Read the first page
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Most helpful customer reviews
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Excellent book. Well written and easy to understand. Freeman Patterson has an amazing way of describing design principles in relation to photography. Right away, this book gets you thinking outside the box. Beautiful, inspirational images with photo analysis in detail. Recommended for beginner to expert.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
61 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Digital vs. Film is Irrelevant! Jan. 18 2005
By Michael P. Collins - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This excellent book is about visual design, and every sentence in it applies equally to film and to digital photography. When camera controls are mentioned, they are the basic features of both types - exposure, depth of field, color vs. black-and-white, "film speed". One paragraph is specific to conceptual dangers involved in the digital process; everything else applies equally to both media.

The book is very successful at providing a kind of "grammar" of visual design, while being careful not to discourage innovation. I find it an excellent resource for anyone who, like me, is interested in moving past taking snapshot and postcard type shots, into truly artistic images.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I've Found EXACTLY What I Was Searching For!!! April 12 2008
By Martha E. Davis - Published on Amazon.com
I am relatively new to photography and have been struggling to master a fairly complex camera (the Nikon D300). As such, I have spent a good deal of time reading "the literature" on cameras, imaging, photography, etc. While some of this information might be of marginal utility to my ultimate success, I had grown weary of the mundane, the boring, and (especially!) the poorly written. This was my perspective when Mr. (Freeman) Patterson's book was among my latest haul from the local library. What a refreshing and pleasant surprise!

Finally I am reading a book that actually makes sense to me! Here is a man who has something of real substance to say and much to contribute to my understanding of this new-found passion! Mr. (Freeman) Patterson distills a measured quantity of insightful information into brief, terse, to-the-point chapters that have been incredibly inspiring to me. He provides suggestions and alternatives that explain the "what" and the "why" as well as the "how." This is NOT one of those thinly-veiled, vain offerings that purport to teach but only contain page after page of images that are boringly similar to those of the last 'author' I happened to consult. Nor is it one of those endless 'cookbooks' that tend to spit back exactly the same content as the manual that came with the camera. No. Mr. (Freeman) Patterson skillfully incorporates a few of his own well-chosen images to enhance his text. In fact, he does this so conservatively that one image often serves to illustrate several examples -- a feature that I found especially appealing.

If you wanted to see many examples of Mr. (Freeman) Patterson's work then this is not the book for you (although I see that other choices are available for this). If you wanted instruction on exactly which button, dial, or setting to use on your camera this book will not be a good choice. BUT, if you have finally gotten those dials, settings, and buttons sorted out and are really ready to start exploring that marvelous machine in your hands then I cannot recommend this book highly enough!

I have decided that I cannot bear to part with this book when it must be returned to the library; shortly I will purchase my own copy (and I can say this about very, very few recent 'photography' books). In fact, I see that he has an entire set of instructional volumes similar to this one. Likely all will make it to the shelves of my library soon. I have even visited his webpage ([...]) and have discovered that he offers seminars that extend the content of this and his other instructional books. I suspect that one day I may get to meet him; I have printed off the application and brochure and now need to go in search of coins between the sofa cushions!!

This book is one of a very few that I will likely want to consult regularly and reread as my photography matures. If you have managed to wade through the dribble that is so plentiful you, too, may be ready for Mr. (Freeman) Patterson.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book on visual design April 4 2008
By Jon Thornton - Published on Amazon.com
This book describes how the Bauhaus/Itten principles of visual design can be applied to photography. If you are technically competent, but lack composition skills, you will find this book very useful.
19 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well pleased with The World around you! Oct. 25 2005
By TheGonz - Published on Amazon.com
One of my favorite books, this one is totally different to what I was used to get when reading a book on photography. Mr. Patterson gives you his approach and what inspired him to take each one of the photos in the book. The topics covered are what I was interested in. I can say that I am very pleased with this book.
This is an excellent book and highly recommended for the topics covered.
5.0 out of 5 stars as a continuing of Seeing... April 27 2014
By Linda L. Shiosaki - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Am working my way through this with pen and notebook in hand..Am treating it as the class I could not get into..is a class on looking at everything around you differently
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