Author: Julie Adair King

Publisher: Wiley Publishing – 356 pages

Book Review by Sonu Chandiram

This guide to the popular digital single lens reflex (DSLR) camera Nikon D5100 is easy to read and understand, and is good for beginners in photography as well as for advanced users.

It is written in a straightforward way and systematically orients the reader to the many features of this excellent camera.

Some people have described this book as a “picture-perfect guide to the Nikon D5100.”

If you own or are planning to buy this camera, this is undoubtedly the best introductory book for you. The book has numerous full-color images that illustrate the many features of the Nikon D5100 and instruct you on how to use and become comfortable with them.

The book shows you such things as on-board effects, light settings, and automatic high dynamic range (HDR) shooting, to name just a few of its neat features.

The author Julie Adair King explains in detail the different ways to use the old and new features of this camera to take unique shots. She teaches digital photography at the Palm Beach Photographic Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. She has written numerous books including a series of For Dummies books on Canon, Nikon and Olympus cameras and on the popular Photoshop software program.

She itemizes a range of terms in photography and defines them so you develop confidence in the use of this great camera. Among other items, this book:

  • Covers basic camera controls and functions, shooting in auto mode, setting photo quality, and navigating menus and the view screen

o    Introduces the basics of photography, including the settings that control lighting, exposure, focus, and color

  • Addresses the new low-light and HDR settings
  • Encourages you to use the new onboard effects features and shares tips for improving images with editing software.

This book is organized into four distinct parts.

Part 1 puts you on a fast track to super snaps, giving you first an overview of photography; basic picture settings available and how to choose the right ones depending on your purpose; taking very good photos automatically; and exploring live view photography and movie making.

Part 2 shows you how to work with picture files, particularly how to play back your photos and edit, erase and protect them. It also teaches you how to download, print and share your photos.

Part 3 takes you into the creative aspects of picture taking, showing you how to use exposure and lighting to get your desired effect in photos, explaining how to manipulate focus and color to make different types of  images, and how to use the various other capabilities of this camera to “put it all together.”

Part 4 shows you ten different fun and practical ways to manipulate your pictures and ten special-purpose features to explore on a rainy day.

Full of detailed images illustrating the different parts of the Nikon D5100, the book contains full-color photos showing how to, for example, position objects and elements in photo frames, play with contrast to sharpen or soften images, and experiment with colors and hues to see which photos look good, better and best.

There are numerous other photographic terms and effects that one can learn about by actually seeing and doing and practicing them, such as aperture control, attaching and removing lenses, auto focus, cropping photos, deleting them, depth of field, exposure adjustment, flash options, focusing, image quality and size, perspective, picture rotation, removing red-eye effect, resizing photos, self-timer shooting, shutter speed, zooming in and zooming out and many other items.

This is an excellent book by a highly capable photographer, experienced teacher of photography and accomplished author of numerous books in her field of expertise. Julie Adair King has written a very good book so that you can benefit from it. Our congratulations to her.