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Nature Photography Book Reviews

by Paul W. Faust. All rights reserved.

The Garden by Freeman Patterson

This is a new book that I have wanted to get and review for many months, and now I am sure glad I did not give up trying. This book is filled with images from a place that would be any nature photographers dream come true. Mr. Patterson was the owner of about 500 acres of high, forested, rocky land in New Brunswick, Canada, which he donated to the Nature Conservancy, but kept about another 25 acres to live on himself. With photo access to the reserve, and a large group of flowerbeds he built on his acres, he has filled this book with four seasons of images from all of those areas. As I said, “a photographers dream” and when you look at all of the images that range from “flower landscapes” to visiting deer, you will think so too. I could write a full page on this book, but I already have my copy and you will just have to buy your own to see exactly what I mean. You won’t be sorry!

This hardback book is about 9x10 inches, with 192 pages, retails for US-$34.95 - and is published by Firefly Books at        I Rate it:       A+++

Plateau Province, A High Desert Portfolio” by Tom Till

I don’t know of a single photographer who has not shot a good amount of landscape images, and I’d say most of them would find it a dream come true to be able to have their work published in a magnificent picture book of those images. The kind that anyone would want to have laying out on their coffee table for everyone to see. Picture books come a dime a dozen, but truly beautiful coffee table photography books are very hard to come by. I said all of that to tell you about “Plateau Province.” This new book is a collection of 135 color images, an essay on desert photography, techniques, equipment, and how the images were made. This hardback book is 10x13 inches, so every full-page image is a huge beautiful picture, some of which like the one on the cover are also two-page spreads. If you would like to see the true beauty of the American southwest at it’s best, this is the book to get. It is one of the very best picture books I have ever reviewed.

Plateau Province retails for $49.95-US, has 176 pages, and can be ordered from Tom Till’s web site at        I Rate it:       A++++

Night Photography by Andrew Sanderson

Probably every photographer has tried night photography at one time or another, and because it is one of the most difficult forms of photography, most do not try it a second time. Generally, photographers either get totally black shadows or blinding highlights, and little subject detail. In order to get an even halfway decent image, they have had to do endless tests of film and developers to get just the right combination of the two that would work. Those excuses are no longer valid. Sanderson has taken ALL of the guess work out of shooting at night, and will not only show you how to create good shots, but top quality ones at that. This book is filled with charts, formulas, and how-to information on shooting in all types of nighttime locations and conditions. It is fully illustrated with samples of what methods were used, and also side-by-side examples of the same subject using different techniques. What quality of images can you expect to get using the information in this book? There is more than one photo in this book that you will not be able to tell if it was shot in the daytime, or at night. If you want an exciting change of pace, get this book and try night photography. Now, if your spouse allows you, you can actually photograph 24 hours a day.

This 9.5x9.5 inch soft cover book has 128 pages and retails for $29.95-US. Published by AMPHOTO at        I Rate it:       A++

Appalachia, The Southern Highlands by Jerry D. Greer

One of the most beautiful, and ancient, areas of the United States is the Southern Appalachian Mountain range that stretches through two National Parks, and several states. You will see why when you look through this new collection of images from Greer who now lives in the area and photographs it all the time. This book covers nature and landscapes at their best, and the images will make you want to pack up your gear and hit the road to see and photograph each and every location. Images from a cute little chipmunk to hundreds of pounds of black bear, and from a beautiful waterfall pouring out of the face to a rock wall, to a mountainside covered with fall colors.

This soft cover book is 9x8 inches, and retails for US-$9.95 - and is published by Mountain Trail Press at        I Rate it:       A+

Shenandoah, Wonder and Light by Ian J. Plant

The Shenandoah Valley and the Shenandoah National Park is another photographers dream location that stretches through Virginia, and Plant’s images will make you wish that it were in your back yard. Beautiful waterfalls in summer and winter, spring wildflowers, and a forest floor covered with ferns with colors that pop off of the pages. This is another great Mountain Trail Press book that will make you want to get out there and shoot for days on end. (As ask myself why am I sitting here writing this and not there?)

This soft cover book is 9x9 inches, and retails for US-$9.95 - and is published by Mountain Trail Press at        I Rate it:       A+

The Wildlife Photographs by John G. Mitchell

The quality of the images in this book first comes from the photographers who are the best of the best, and from the name National Geographic on the cover just confirms that fact. From jungle insects that look more like they came out of a sci-fi movie, to a mud covered rhino, from the African plains, to under the sea, the images are the best you will see anywhere. This book is a collection of images from some the best nature photographers around, including Frans Lanting, and Jim Brandenburg to name just two. It is a super nature and wildlife book for any photo library.

This hardback book is about 7x10 inches, with 191 pages, and retails for US-$50.00 and if a local bookstore does not have a copy you can order it from the NG web site at        I Rate it:       A++

American Landscape - David Muench, text by T.H. Watkins

The name David Muench is synonymous with the best photography that you will see anywhere. This book is yet another one that shows just that fact. It is divided into six sections of the land called America, and includes 197 full color images printed in a quality that could be framed and hang. This book is also filled with information on each area with over 22,500 words in text and captions. You also will not believe the incredibly low price for such an incredible quality book. (I still think that part was a printing error)

This hardback book is about 10x13 inches, with 207 pages, retails for US-$17.98 – and is distributed by Sterling Publishers at        I Rate it:       A+++

Photographing Wildflowers, Techniques for the Advanced Amateur and Professional by Craig and Nadine Blacklock

This book covers all of the normal shooting methods, but although it does have a lot of very nice flower illustrations, it doesn’t have much of what has not already been published dozens of times before. It is a small size book, but it has a real good price, and it will make a good reference book for out in the field, and more than worth getting to use there.

This soft cover book has 63 pages, retails for US-$12.95 - and is published by Voyageur Press at        I Rate it:       B+

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