Photo Craft by Susan Tuttle and Christy Hydeck is a beautiful book on using photography to make art as well as beautiful photos.
10 out of 10 stars. This is by far the best book I’ve read on photography, photoshop techniques to improve photos, and using photos in art. The material covered is exhaustive and there are tons of photos to show you the befores and afters.
There are photography tips throughout the book in addition to having a section devoted to knowing your camera, a section devoted to how to take photos, and a section on using a photo program like photoshop to improve your photos. I’ve never used “noise” before and although I’ve used many of the tools and techniques in this section, I’ve never used them the way the author has. I also have never taken photos in the RAW, but now that I know how useful they are, that’s how I’ll be taking them from now on (with the exception of my phone photos).
Photo as Art
One of the things I’ve always wanted to do is turn my photographs into art pieces, like making a photograph look like a painting. The section on turning photographs into art has an entire how-to for doing that in addition to several other ways to use photographs in art. It’s also not just photographs as art but making art to frame your photographs.
Table of Contents
The only thing this book is seriously lacking is a descriptive table of contents. Instead of a list of the various projects and techniques, there are non-descriptive titles for each larger section which really isn’t helpful. So here’s what’s covered:
- Digital tools and techniques (10 pp)
- Taking great photos
- Improve photos digitally
- Depth of field
- 3D Images
- Focal point
- Light and texture
- Texture/blending modes
- Silhouette effect
- Foil transfers
- Pan pastels paint-over
- Creating a watercolor painting from a photograph
- Woodburning and watercolors from photographs
- Photographic techniques
- Charcoal and sandpaper vignettes
- White vignettes
- Solid fill layers
- Applying a vintage haze
- Mixed media and quotes with photographs
- Texture with cheesecloth and beeswax
- Tissue paper and wax
- Rainbow gradient fill
- Photo journaling
- Photo storyboards
- Photographing words and poetry
- Upcycling: what to do with forgotten photos
- Using resin on photos
- Creating a beveled frame
- Turning photos into abstract art
I love it for the digital techniques and tips on using your digital SLR camera, but this would be a perfect book for a mixed media artist too.
10 out of 10 stars. The only thing this book is missing is a better table of contents.
Reviewed by Erin.