The Complete guide to Macro and Close-Up Photography
Author: Cyrill Harnischmacher
Cyrill Harnischmacher’s book The Complete Guide to Macro and Close-Up Photography should have the emphasis on the word complete. Because it is my favorite genre, I have read many books on macro photography. This one is by far the most comprehensive.
I wouldn’t recommend this book for the person who is just browsing in macro. There is so much information here that the total beginner could be scared away. On the other hand, for the person who knows he/she wants to be a competent macro shooter, this book will be a great resource. It covers all the beginning information but adds in many more techniques than the average beginner book includes.
For instance, in equipment it goes through the usual options for using normal lenses like close-up filters, teleconverters, and extension tubes plus dedicated macro lenses but also includes many filters, remote controllers such as cell phones and triggertraps. There are discussion on depth of field, magnification and exposure, sometimes with actual numbers and formulas. Again, all useful for the macro enthusiasts but a little scary at first glance.
There is a useful chapter on how to set up an in home studio including several options for creatively lighting the small subjects. This is followed by field techniques when out of the studio. There are also chapters on editing, lighting, composition, and even on do it yourself projects. Macro photographers are big on homemade gadgets. The chapter on special techniques will give the reader a sense of what is possible with macro techniques. There is coverage of multiple exposure, focus stacking, light painting, time-lapse, HDR, Infrared and more. This suggests that anything photographer do in the big world can be done in the tiny world also.
There are a couple of things that are distracting such as the measurements are all in metric. I don’t think intuitively in millimeters like I do in inches. Also a few terms are different such as grey filters for neutral density filters. All in all, this is a lot of good information in a small package.