National Geographic Field Guide: Black & White.
Text by Richard Olsenius.
National Geographic, Washington, 2005. 160 pp., 110 illustrations, 5¼x8½".
Veteran National Geographic photographer, photo editor, and filmmaker Richard Olsenius provides a compelling case for capturing the essence of people and landscapes through black-and-white photography, and shares his secrets to mastering the craft and the latest technology. This 160-page guidebook is as much about 'how to visualize a story in black and white' as it is about the technical aspects of photography. Finding black and white in a world of kaleidoscopic color, seeing the essential form, structure, or meaning in a subject, requires 'a special way of seeing.' The guide covers the advantages of different camera formats, lenses, and light filters for different types of photography. The goal is to aid new or developing photographers in choosing the best camera and equipment for achieving their objectives. A section on light and film provides tools and advice on how to use light and various films to provide a palette of tone and brightness in the final photographic image. A master printer in both color and black and white, Olsenius provides numerous suggestions on both digital and darkroom techniques for printing the final image. The guide is filled with 120 photographs illustrating the techniques addressed in each chapter. In addition, the work of four noted photographers is included in the guide, along with interviews describing their reasons for shooting in black and white. They include Father Don Doll, who has worked most of his career photographing Native Americans and produced a number of stories for National Geographic Magazine. Brian Peterson is an award-winning newspaper photographer for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Marion E. Warren is a noted photographer who at 84 is best known for his work on the Chesapeake Bay. Nick Kelsh is a commercial photographer and art director who works in advertising and has produced several specialty books using black-and-white photography. Additional information on displaying and storing photography is included in the guide. A Useful Information section includes Web-based resources, books, and magazines to provide valuable references for the emerging photographer.
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