The Annabel Williams Book of Wedding and Portrait Photography

A very comprehensive book on wedding/portrait photography
The Annabel Williams Book of Wedding and Portrait Photography
By Annabel Williams
RotoVision, 2003
ISBN: 2 88046 779 9

The Annabel Williams Book of Wedding and Portrait Photography

The author of this book is a leading British proponent of a relaxed and natural portrait and wedding style. An educator as well as a photographer in high demand, she brings to this book a similarly relaxed and non-technical approach.

The book’s 270 or so pages are divided into two sections Portrait and Wedding.
Portrait:
*    Contemporary lifestyle photography
*    Developing the client relationship
*    Location, lighting, and technique
*    Make-up, clothes, and color analysis
*    Art directing and creating relaxed poses
*    Real-life shoots
*    Working with children
*    Editing and shooting for versatility
*    Creating furniture for walls
*    Maximizing your market
Wedding:
*    Contemporary wedding photography
*    Planning and preparing
*    Make-up and styling
*    A real-life wedding
*    Location and lighting
*    Editing an album
*    Marketing for wedding photography

This book is a gem and belongs on the recommended reading list for every photography course. Photographing people for portraits and at weddings is fundamentally a people-oriented task, yet if you believed many books on wedding/portrait you would think it was fundamentally a technical task. Sure, technique and equipment is involved, but if you can’t work with and handle people then no amount of equipment will return good results. So this book puts the emphasis where it belongs, with people, planning and preparation.

So while each chapter has some great technique coverage, whether it is light placement, posing people and location issues, there is always an emphasis on the people aspect. One feature I really love about this book are the sections where it takes you time wise step by step through a process, whether it is doing makeup or a whole day’s shoot. This is really helpful when building your skills and confidence, and very illuminating on how a pro paces an event and just how much time is involved. The book also has great information on what shots to take and, most importantly, how to make your clients relaxed and how to build rapport with them.

The Annabel Williams Book of Wedding and Portrait Photography

Don’t expect any digital orientation in this book, but then it really doesn’t need it to be great. This is, in fact, one of the best, most insightful and significant wedding/portrait books I have ever seen. For those who feel they need more on equipment, there are many great books out there that will cover the equipment and even the digital angle that can supplement this book but none will replace it. Get this book, read it and apply and practice what it teaches you.

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