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Are you interested in photography and looking for an interesting photography book? Or you know a photographer and want to give him a suitable gift? In this article you will find our 21 favorite photography books for beginners, advanced users and all those interested in photography.
Every photographer should have at least one photography book on the shelf at home. Not only to browse through it from time to time and to develop, but only for inspiration!
There are so many great photographers out there and some of them have written great books to learn from or be inspired.
Photo books are not only suitable for photographers: there are also photography books that are not only aimed at the people who can operate a SLR camera, but also at those who simply appreciate great photos.
In this article we show you our 21 favorite books about photography. Both textbooks and interesting illustrated books with impressive photos from all over the world are included.
Our Top 6 Books on Photography
If you don’t want to scour the whole list, we’ll give you a quick overview of our top 7 books on photography.
Our top 6 photography books (the order is not valuing):
1 The Heart of Photography
2 Photographing Authentic Portraits
3 Shut down
4 How you’ve never seen the world
5 Landscape photography in Germany
6 Masterclass Street Photography
Photography books for beginners
If you’ve just bought your first camera or are about to do it soon, don’t do anything wrong with a beginner’s photography book. It explains the basics of photography in a clear and comprehensible way and you can try them out right away.
Slightly different photography textbooks
These books are suitable for both beginners and advanced photographers. Famous photographers use their own works to show you how to take your photos to the next level.
1 The Heart of Photography
What is the heart of photography? What a picture expresses!
In this book, the professional photographer David DuChemin guides you through the various aspects of imagery. You don’t just get chapter-by-chapter instructions on how to photograph something, but you’ll be asked specific questions about the photo using examples from the photographer.
Where does the eye lead us and what role does light play?
The goal is to analyze the image and decipher its message so that you can use the same procedure in your own photos.
The book is suitable for both beginners and experienced photographers who want to perfect their image design.
2 The soul of the camera
What is the difference between a technically flawless photo and a photo, which stands out from the crowd? In this book, the professional photographer David DuChemin gets to the bottom of this question.
Using examples of his own photos, the author shows what ultimately matters in a successful photo: the significance.
A great book for photographers who want to give their works a certain touch.
3 50 Paths to Creative Photography
Book 50 Paths to Creative Photography. This book is not about camera technology, but about seeing. What can be seen in a photo and what makes it so special?
The internationally renowned photographer Michael Freeman analyzes different photos of famous photographers in a total of 50 chapters. The likes of Bruce Gilden, Alex Webb and Ernst Haas are also in attendance.
Each chapter is about a different creative approach to how a photo was artistically designed and what makes it so special.
A great book to be inspired by yourself!
4 Your own view
Book The own view A book as a guide to make your own photos very special. “The Eye” is a guide for photographers who already know the technical basics of photography and now want to develop the artistic aspect further.
Also included are exercises and workshops through which you can train your photographic eye. So it’s definitely not a book, which you can read by the way, but a real practice book.
The book is one of the most popular guides in photography.
Also Read: 10 tips for photography beginners
5 The Art of Seeing
The Art of Seeing Manfred Kriegelstein, who is both a professional photographer and a book author, has written this book especially for those who are already familiar with the technique of a camera.
Information for camera settings and the equipment used can be found here in vain. It’s all about the photographic eye.
Using his own photographs, he explains how the image came about and gives the reader tips on how to perceive the atmosphere and inconspicuousness of his surroundings and how to process them into an outstanding photo.
Books on Photography for Advanced Photographers
If you are already technically well known with your camera and want to explore new photography areas, then here are some interesting book tips for photographers who want to develop further.
6 Photograph Authentic Portraits
Photographing Authentic Portraits Book Doesn’t Just Hold the Camera in Front of Your Face and Trigger It. To make a profound portrait of someone, it takes sensitivity, knowledge of people and the ability to gain the trust of the portraited person.
The portraits of photographer Chris Orwig are known for their expressiveness and reveal the hidden characteristics of a human being. With this book, he takes his reader by the hand and guides him through his workflow during portrait shoots.
He explains not only the technical details of the lenses used, but also the practical aspects of portrait photography, such as light, background and image design.
7 Masterclass Street Photography
Book Masterclass Street PhotographyOn our doorstep there are so many photo motifs! Where to start?
Street photography is an incredibly wide field. Colours, shadows, people, architecture – no matter where you look in the city, there is always something to photograph.
In this book, the London street photographer Brian Lloyd Duckett not only shows you his impressive photos, but also takes you through the various themes of street photography.
Using examples, he also gives a lot of information about the technical and legal aspects as well as tips on the ideal equipment. A practical book for advanced photographers, or at least those who are already familiar with the basic principles of photography.
8 The photo course for advanced users
Book Photo Course for Advanced StudentsThis very practice-oriented photo course book is intended for those who already know the basics of photography and want to bring their knowledge to the professional level.
The book consists of eight chapters covering topics such as flash, image editing and filters. The texts are short and crisp, so that the reader does not get lost in too long technical explanations. Of course, there are many photos that illustrate everything.
Definitely a book, which is suitable as a gift for someone who already owns a camera and already has experience with photography.
9 Creative Image Editing
Book Creative Image EditingYou are a photographer and may already be knowledge of Lightroom, but would you really like to edit your photos at a designer level?
Then you should look at Photoshop and this manual. The digital artist Gabor Richter shows you the Photoshop tools for 30 cool effects here. For example, how a subject dissolves into air, how you add image elements or how to give your photo cool lighting effects.
It explains the different Photoshop tools and how to use them best with examples. So the book is primarily intended for Photoshop beginners.
10 Basics Macro Photography
Book Basics Macro PhotographyThe two photographers Peter Uhl and Martina Walther-Uhl have a number of interesting photo books for various areas of photography, including this one. With their simple texts and comprehensible explanations, you can fully immerse yourself in macro photography here.
So if you have only been in landscape photography and want to train now, then we can recommend this book.
But even if you haven’t been photographing for a long time, this book is very handy, because the basics of photography are also explained.
The paperback-sized book also fits well into your photo bag!
11 basics of lightning photography
Book Basics Flash PhotographyIf you have always photographed without flash and want to deal with this technique now, then we can recommend this book.
The first part of the book also deals with general photography basics and the different types of flashes.
The second part consists of exercises where you can use the flash in different situations. The book is small and handy, so you can take it to shoots and consult it if needed.
Photography books for photo tours
These books are especially intended for landscape photographers who are always looking for new destinations for their photo tours.
12 landscape photography in Germany
Book Landscape Photography GermanyFor great landscape photos you don’t need to travel far, because in Germany we also have stunning landscapes! The landscape photographer Heinz Wohner has been photographing the most beautiful areas of Germany for years and shows them to you in this book.
You can find an overview of our favorites in the article about the 11 most beautiful nature destinations in Germany
Of course, there are many tips and information about equipment, camera settings and locations, for example on Rügen, in the Alps or in the Black Forest. This makes the book Travel Guide and Photography Manual in one. Practical, right?
13 Photo Tour Germany
Buch Fototour DeutschlandFototour Deutschland is a picture book with wonderful landscape photographs from all corners of Germany. The landscape photographer Andreas Pacek takes you to the most impressive points of view and also gives the camera settings for each photo taken.
In addition, there is also a QR code for each location, through which you can find out all sorts of information about the place, for example parking, insider tips and directions.
The book is especially suitable for experienced photographers who are already familiar with their camera. In addition, it is a great travel guide for Germany!
Book ShutTing DownWe love to photograph old, rusty objects as well as disused factories, abandoned houses or hidden ruins.
This book is about 100 abandoned places in Germany and Europe. The photographers Thomas Kemnitz, Robert Conrad and Michael Täger show stunning photos of abandoned buildings and give extensive information about their history and reasons for the closure.
The book also contains a map that allows you to visit the various buildings yourself.
Picture books and inspiration
If you prefer to look at more than read, then a picture book is ideal. Such photography books are also well suited for camera amateurs who like to look at great photos.
15 National Geographic: How you’ve never seen the world
Book National GeographicAt National Geographic, we don’t have to say much. Great shots from the most beautiful corners of the world. This illustrated book is not only about beautiful landscapes, but also about cities, animals, people or simply very special moments
For example, candy makers at work in Afghanistan, the Californian starry sky or a mysterious forest full of bellflowers. And this on about 400 pages!
This book is therefore not only suitable for photographers, but all those who appreciate great photos from all over the world. A perfect Christmas present!
Book Photo:BoxThe 250 most famous photographs since the camera was available.
This book is a collection of photos that have written photography history. It is divided into 12 different thematic areas: among others city, sports, fashion, portrait or nature.
For each photo there is a short description and the name of the photographer. There are some photos that everyone has seen before, as well as others that are less well known, but just as valuable. A book that every photographer and photography enthusiast should have on their bookshelf!
17 Photography of the 20th century
Book Photography of the 20th CenturyA real waltz with 760 pages about the 850 most important photos of the 20th century. This book was created from the collection of L. Fritz Gruber, one of the most important photography collections in Germany.
In alphabetical order you will find here all the important photographers of the century, along with some of their pictures and biographical details.
A standard work for photography enthusiasts, which you can always get off the shelf and browse through.
18 history of photography
Book History of PhotographyThe founder of Kodak, George Eastman, left behind a large collection of photographs and films, which was continued after his death in 1932 as a museum of photography and film.
The collection has grown to this day and now includes more than 40,000 works by famous photographers of the 19th and 20th centuries.
This book is about this collection. On almost 770 pages you will find important works from 1839 to the early 1990s in chronological order.
So if you are as interested in history as you are in photography, we can recommend this book.
19 National Geographic: The Photographs
Book National Geographic The PhotographsThis book is virtually the standard work of the National Geographic series. When it was released in 2008, it was even crowned Book of the Year. The photos contained therein are works by the best photographers in the world and show photographs from science, art, nature, archaeology and astronomy, to name a few.
A photography book that impresses everyone and is great as a gift. The short texts are only in English, but that’s not too bad, because the photos speak for themselves!
20 50 Years of Wildlife
Book 50 Years Of Wildlife PhotographsThis book is something very special for wildlife lovers and nature photographers.
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the “Wildlife Photographs of the Year” competition, it was published and is an interesting retrospective of the development of nature photography.
Not only are beautiful photos from the flora and fauna shown, but there are also comprehensive texts and explanations about the shooting techniques and the development of nature photography.
Photography books for children
Photographing wants to be learned early. If you know a child or adolescent who is interested in photography or has recently received a camera as a gift, we recommend this book as a gift for young photography beginners:
21 The photo course for young photographers
Book photo course for young photographersIf you are still looking for a gift for a young person who is interested in photography, then here is the perfect photo book. The book is suitable for readers aged 13 and over and covers all important topics of photography. Everything is explained in such a way that young readers understand it and explain aspects such as light, color and the functions of the camera.
A super entry-level book that introduces young photographers to photography. You can never start too early!
These were our 21 books on photography that we can recommend! Do you know more great photography books that we can list here? Then please leave us a comment! Otherwise we wish you a lot of fun while looking at pictures and reading.