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Photographer
mindxus
Posts: 41


what is the best book about studio lighting you have ever read and you would recommend to others? its quite hard to make a right choice because there are hundeds of books,with diverse reviews
Jun 03 08 01:45 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
fStopstudios
Posts: 3,321
Lowell, Massachusetts, US


perhaps I'm just picky or have ADD, but I haven't seen one that was worth the price. For lighting concepts, there's plenty of free info available. However, for actual learning, trial and error (and equip) is the way to go.
Jun 03 08 01:50 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Eduardo Frances
Posts: 3,227
Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain


What do you want? ligthing for products? for fashion?, bridal?, portraits?, still life?, food?, product shots?. the best you can do is get one that is focused in the area you want to learn they will have more depth in the matters you want to learn that a general all stuff book.
Jun 03 08 02:02 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Geyer Studio
Posts: 186
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada


Light science magic is a must for anyone that intends to use studio lighting....but it will not teach you "butterfly", "rembrant", "paramount", "rim"....but you must read this.

Others that I found worthwhile include Lighting and the dramatic portrait.

Most others are unoriginal and/or repetitive.

Best of luck.
Jun 03 08 02:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Hector Fernandez
Posts: 1,152
Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico


Steve Bavister series he has one for product other for fashion and I think one for glamour. Great stuff, diagrams and explanations without bs.
Jun 03 08 02:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
X-processed
Posts: 211


I've just got this one http://www.amazon.ca/Lighting-Portrait- … 464&sr=8-4.
I am noob in this area and I love to have paper reading materials in the bed.
Very simple to follow; photos and lighting diagrams with short explanations-exactly what I like.
Jun 03 08 02:12 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Screaming J Hyde
Posts: 7,847
Sacramento, California, US


Lots of stuff out there; don't buy unless it has diagrams!  webphotoschool.com (via Photoflex) is also a great subscription-based tutorial site.
Jun 03 08 02:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Awesome Headshots
Posts: 2,369
San Ramon, California, US


fStopstudios wrote:
perhaps I'm just picky or have ADD, but I haven't seen one that was worth the price. For lighting concepts, there's plenty of free info available. However, for actual learning, trial and error (and equip) is the way to go.

I agree. Trial and error works best for me since the books always have a certain brand of light and a certain brand of camera and a certain type of backdrop. Plus the models they use look like the photographers inbreed cousin wink

Jun 03 08 02:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jazzi Photo
Posts: 18
New Orleans, Louisiana, US


Not a book, but you  might check this free webinar sponsored by Bogen. 

http://www.bogenimaging.us/Jahia/site/b … /pid/17283
Jun 03 08 02:42 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gary Reisman
Posts: 354
SHERMAN OAKS, California, US


X-processed wrote:
I've just got this one http://www.amazon.ca/Lighting-Portrait- … 464&sr=8-4.
I am noob in this area and I love to have paper reading materials in the bed.
Very simple to follow; photos and lighting diagrams with short explanations-exactly what I like.

I got that one, and this one as well
http://www.amazon.com/Photographing-Peo … b_title_41

both are pretty straight up and show what it took to snap the photos shown, which I like.

Jun 03 08 06:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kevin Connery
Posts: 16,833
El Segundo, California, US


* Fil Hunter and Paul Fuqua's Light--Science and Magic. Discusses all the technical fundamentals of lighting.
(MM Thread on Light Science and Magic)

* Ross Lowell's Matters of Light and Depth. Originally written for cinematographers, Matters of Light and Depth discusses more of the mood, emotional, and reactive responses to lighting. Works extremely well in conjunction with Light-Science and Magic.

Both are conceptual, and work across all genre of photography. Once the foundations are solid, genre-specific (portraiture, for example) can be investigated. (Or learn some genre-specific recipes then study the fundamentals, if that's the way you learn best.)

Also, check out the Lighting Mod's 12 must-read photography books blog, which lists mostly lighting-specific books.
Jun 03 08 11:27 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Black Ricco
Posts: 3,486
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, US


Technique of Photographic Lighting.

Have you checked out this thread?
Jun 03 08 11:34 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Elemental Photography Q
Posts: 1
Sarina, Queensland, Australia


mindxus wrote:
what is the best book about studio lighting you have ever read and you would recommend to others? its quite hard to make a right choice because there are hundeds of books,with diverse reviews

Check this book out we'll worth the dollars

http://studiolightingphotography.com/buy-the-ebook/

Jun 20 13 11:41 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
m_s_photo
Posts: 602
Port Moody, British Columbia, Canada


Frankly, I haven't read most of the books recommended above so I can't say it's the best, but I found David Hobby's Strobist website to be the most useful of all the information I found out there.
Jun 21 13 08:51 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Eros Studios
Posts: 690
Boston, Massachusetts, US


mindxus wrote:
what is the best book about studio lighting you have ever read and you would recommend to others? its quite hard to make a right choice because there are hundeds of books,with diverse reviews

I would recommend kelbytraining.com @ $25.00 a month - tons of great video tutorials on all photography/photoshop topics, including lighting by some masters of the craft.

If you don't want to spend that money, I'd search YouTube for lighting tutorials.  There's tons of them, some of them good, some of them not.

Thing is, what I've found is that books and tutorials give you some theories and starting points but experience and experimentation are the real teachers.  If you aren't shooting enough with and have access to models on a regular basis to hone these chops, I recommend picking up a mannequin to use for your lighting set up experimentation.

Jun 21 13 09:25 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Warrenjrphotography-SJ
Posts: 212
Hammonton, New Jersey, US


Geyer Studio wrote:
Light science magic is a must for anyone that intends to use studio lighting....but it will not teach you "butterfly", "rembrant", "paramount", "rim"....but you must read this.

Others that I found worthwhile include Lighting and the dramatic portrait.

Most others are unoriginal and/or repetitive.

Best of luck.

It does teach you all of those lighting profiles besides butterfly & loop (those two can be learned online very fast anyways).

I'd suggest just using the internet/Google to figure out studio lighting.

Jun 21 13 07:42 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Warrenjrphotography-SJ
Posts: 212
Hammonton, New Jersey, US


Eros Studios wrote:

I would recommend kelbytraining.com @ $25.00 a month - tons of great video tutorials on all photography/photoshop topics, including lighting by some masters of the craft.

If you don't want to spend that money, I'd search YouTube for lighting tutorials.  There's tons of them, some of them good, some of them not.

Thing is, what I've found is that books and tutorials give you some theories and starting points but experience and experimentation are the real teachers.  If you aren't shooting enough with and have access to models on a regular basis to hone these chops, I recommend picking up a mannequin to use for your lighting set up experimentation.

This is the best advice you're going to get. I used Kelby for 1 month and think that it's okay but really most of what I learned was Photoshop techniques that can also be learned via using Google or by buying Scott Kelbys book.

Otherwise, experience is the best teacher when it comes to hands on photography.

You need to figure out what works best for you and you can only achieve that via experience.

Jun 21 13 07:45 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
ontherocks
Posts: 22,427
Salem, Oregon, US


check out creativelive. i've learned a lot from those workshops from the likes of lindsay adler and others.

also, there's no replacement for lots and lots of experimentation. play with your lights and modifiers and see what setups you can come up with.

rim, kicker and hair lights sometimes can make all the difference depending on the genre. people talk about using one light but i often use 4 or 5 and could easily use 7 (assuming 2 to light the background).
Jun 21 13 09:56 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
GCobb Photography
Posts: 15,894
Southaven, Mississippi, US


X-processed wrote:
I've just got this one http://www.amazon.ca/Lighting-Portrait- … 464&sr=8-4.
I am noob in this area and I love to have paper reading materials in the bed.
Very simple to follow; photos and lighting diagrams with short explanations-exactly what I like.

That Science and Magic one, the reviews say it doesn't show diagrams and is hard to follow if you don't already have a lot of lighting experience.  I need something that gives me ideas and tells me why.

This one may work for me.

Jun 21 13 10:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Mark Fix
Posts: 273
Englewood, Colorado, US


mindxus wrote:
what is the best book about studio lighting you have ever read and you would recommend to others? its quite hard to make a right choice because there are hundeds of books,with diverse reviews

Fine Light series by Dean Collins are some of best ever (books and videos) and I would highly recommend to others.  Books by Bill Norman on "Depth of Light" and "Depth of Field" are also great tutorials and highly recommended.

Jun 21 13 10:27 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ruben Vasquez
Posts: 3,114
Puyallup, Washington, US


GCobb Photography wrote:
That Science and Magic one, the reviews say it doesn't show diagrams and is hard to follow if you don't already have a lot of lighting experience.  I need something that gives me ideas and tells me why.

This one may work for me.

I don't know what reviews are saying there are no lighting diagrams but they're completely false. Every version of Light, Science and Magic is chock full of lighting diagrams.

The difficulty of following along is pretty subjective. Personally I thought it was very easy to follow along as they introduce concepts at a simple level and gradually up the complexity. But they explain the "why" so that you know what affect a wide-angle lens vs a telephoto lens will have, or moving the light forward or backwards or rotating it around and so on.

Personally, I feel it is far and away the most useful book on lighting I've ever read. I'd also echo Kevin's recommendation on Matters of Light and Depth as well as pretty much anything ever put out by Dean Collins (be it print media or video).

Jun 22 13 01:13 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
GM Photography
Posts: 6,087
Olympia, Washington, US


When I first started learning about lighting I found Master Lighting Guide for Portrait Photographers by Christopher Grey (a fellow MMer) to be very helpful.  I would also recommend Light Science & Magic.
Jun 22 13 07:17 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Andrea Acailawen
Posts: 951
Tampa, Florida, US


Another vote for "Light Science and Magic"
Jun 22 13 07:43 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Herman Surkis
Posts: 8,688
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada


L S & M
Once you have gone through that, the rest of anybody else will make more sense.
You can get a book with neat diagrams, and follow slavishly and get good photos, but you will not understand "light". If you understand light, then experimenting will actually teach you something, and you can go beyond the cookie cutter books.
Jun 29 13 01:43 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
afplcc
Posts: 5,998
Fairfax, Virginia, US


Eduardo Frances wrote:
What do you want? ligthing for products? for fashion?, bridal?, portraits?, still life?, food?, product shots?. the best you can do is get one that is focused in the area you want to learn they will have more depth in the matters you want to learn that a general all stuff book.

+1

I'm sure the OP has a specific lighting issue in mind.  But you've got book recommendations for lighting theory and concepts, using strobes and artificial light and speed lights, table-top/light tent shooting, portraits, and so on.  Depending upon the answer, I'd have different recommendations.  I do agree that lots of diagrams with sample photos (i.e.: you see the photo, you see how it was set up) are key.

Ed

Jun 29 13 03:16 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Thomas Van Dyke
Posts: 1,684
Washington, District of Columbia, US


mindxus wrote:
studio lighting?

If you are working in Fashion/Beauty genre might look at this http://www.amazon.com/Lighting-Cookbook … 0817442316

The author is on Mayhem btw...

like so many others have said, what is your intended genre?

If you're shooting product it's an entirely different game...

As with any knowledgebase source... look at the authors background/experience to see what agenda he/she brings to the table... Also in doing research it is wise to canvass many schools of thought prior to decided what might work from your needs...

best is highly subjective... and print material is sadly disappearing...  a shame since the process of going through an editor typically culls out inappropriate materials...

all the best on your journey...

Jun 29 13 03:37 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Marin Photography NYC
Posts: 7,194
New York, New York, US


I find that videos for lighting are much more effective than books. Books are flat and have diagrams. Videos actually show you where the light lands and what the shadows look like and you can see it in more than one dimension and angle. I have lots of books on photography and I find that the author often likes to hear himself talk more than teach.  Light Science Magic is a great book but I can't get through it without falling asleep. I prefer to skip the tech talk and show me like a five year old where and how and let me figure out the small details.  big_smile
Jun 29 13 04:14 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
YZF Jeff
Posts: 249
Statesboro, Georgia, US


I've never read a book on the subject as i found Zack Arias' One Light Workshop and David Hobby's video tutorials to be pretty good at explaining the basics of lighting. I tried to make it through all of Sue Bryce's videos but she just put me to sleep.
Jun 29 13 11:10 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Fotomoon
Posts: 70
Somerset, New Jersey, US


I went to the book store grab coffee and all the lighting books on the shelf. sat in the corner and took home the ones that I like.
Jun 29 13 11:17 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Flex Photography
Posts: 5,208
Sudbury, Ontario, Canada


Not a textbook, but an excellect working guide to great portrait lighting!

Shoot - Studio Sessions - Peter Brew-Bevan
Excellent book! (Though expensive)
Jun 30 13 02:15 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Randall D
Posts: 259
Helena, Alabama, US


I'd vote for "Light Science and Magic".

Also a website you might like to visit...  Strobox.com

It has numerous images with lighting diagrams and descriptions of equipment.
Jul 02 13 04:29 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
fullmetalphotographer
Posts: 2,760
Fresno, California, US


These are some of the best books I have found.

This is one of the best books on glamour photography Pro Techniques of Beauty & Glamour Photography (Hp Photobooks) [Paperback] http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41FZX6QZvtL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
http://www.amazon.com/Techniques-Beauty … +bernstein

Really good book for EP and Commercial work Pro Techniques of People Photography [Mass Market Paperback] http://www.amazon.com/Techniques-People … im_sbs_b_2
Jul 02 13 04:54 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DEREX Art
Posts: 234
Paterson, New Jersey, US


Greetings,

I do not claim "best." 

However, though my book "Studio Portrait Photography in Black & White" (Amherst Media) was published in 2000, the material still applies today. 

Synopsis:
"Studio portrait photography, unlike natural light or environmental portrait photography, offers photographers unparalleled opportunities to reflect the character and individuality of their subjects. This book shows how black-and-white studio photography emphasizes this ability by removing the distractions of color. Every step is explained, showing how to create sensual beauty images, cutting-edge fashion shots, powerful images of athletes, romantic wedding portraits, sweet images of children, and emotional images of couples. Discussions on proper equipment, lighting, and development procedures make it easy for photographers to replicate or adapt the ideas in their studio."

I think you will enjoy this book. 

All the best,

=David Derex
Jul 03 13 05:22 pm  Link  Quote 
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