Category Archives: Textbooks

The best books on photography

While we are all staying safe at home, many of us have been working on our hobbies. At Booko HQ we really enjoy taking photos. Thankfully there are a number of great tools available online to help you take your photography skills to the next level. But if you are looking for a little more inspiration, or want to take some time to flick through an actual book then look no further. We have rounded up some of the greatest books on photography to inspire you. 

Studio Anywhere by Nick Fancher

What’s your definition of a photo studio? Is it a room with a white seamless backdrop? Maybe it’s simply anywhere you’re in control of the lighting. But the reality is that you may have an outdated DSLR with two decent lenses (which took you several years to save up for), and all you have at your disposal is an unfinished basement, your garage, or the empty conference room at your office. That’s where Studio Anywhere comes in. With photographer Nick Fancher as your guide, you’ll learn how to get portfolio-ready photos while working in some of the most problematic scenarios imaginable. Whether shooting a corporate portrait, a test shoot with a model, or a promo shoot with a band, you’ll discover that most of the time, there’s no need for an expensive studio, you just have to get creative. Studio Anywhere is a resource for photographers to learn through behind-the-scenes photos and lighting diagrams from a range of photo shoots but it doesn’t stop there. Because directing a photo shoot involves more than simply knowing how to wield a camera or process a raw file, Nick also lets you in on the aesthetic decisions he makes in his signature photos, inspiring you to develop your own vision.

Photographers on Photography by Henry Carroll

Think you know photography? Think again. Through a carefully curated selection of quotes and images, this book reveals what matters most to the masters of photography. With accompanying text by Henry Carroll, author of the internationally bestselling Read This If You Want To Take Great Photographs series, you’ll learn what photography actually means to the giants of the genres and how they developed their distinctive visual styles. Divided into clear sections, quotes offer intimate insights into “the camera”, “the photograph”, “taking pictures”, “style, subject matter and technique” and ultimately answer that all-important question-“what exactly is photography?”.

Zen Camera by David Ulrich

Zen Camera is a photography and mindfulness program that guides you to the creativity at your fingertips, literally, requiring nothing more than your smartphone or any other type of camera. Over the course of six lessons gleaned from the author’s 40 years of teaching photography, you’ll learn how to use the camera in your pocket to explore self-expression as a photographer and produce photographs that are both wildly beautiful and uniquely your own. Gorgeously illustrated with 60-75 full-colour photographs, David Ulrich’s lessons combine mindfulness principles with concrete exercises and the basic mechanics of taking a good photograph. He guides you through a program of taking photos every day (called your Daily Record), similar to a journaling practice. He also offers profound insight into the nature of seeing, art, and attention, pushing you to live more authentically.

The Social Photo by Nathan Jurgenson

With the rise of the smart phone and social media, cameras have become ubiquitous, infiltrating nearly every aspect of social life. The glowing camera screen is the lens by which many of us apprehend and communicate our experience. But our thinking about photography has been slow to catch up; this major fixture of everyday life is still often treated in the terms of art or journalism. In The Social Photo, social theorist Nathan Jurgenson develops bold new ways of understanding the transformations wrought by these image-making and sharing technologies and the cultural objects they have ushered in the selfie, the faux-vintage photo, the self-destructing image, and the food photo. Jurgenson shows how these devices and platforms have re-made the world and our understanding of ourselves within it.

Annie Leibovitz at Work by Annie Leibovitz

Leibovitz addresses young photographers and readers interested in what photographers do, but any reader interested in contemporary history will be fascinated by her account of one of the richest bodies of work in the photographic canon. The subjects include photojournalism, studio work, photographing dancers and athletes, working with writers, and making the transition from shooting with film to working with digital cameras. Originally published in 2008, this revised and updated edition brings Leibovitz’s bestselling book back into print.

Midlife by Elinor Carucci

From acclaimed photographer Elinor Carucci, Midlife is a vivid chronicle of one woman’s passage through aging, family, illness, and intimacy. It is a period in life that is universal, at some point, to everyone, yet in our day-to-day and cultural dialogue, nearly invisible. Midlife is a moving and empathetic portrait of an artist at the point in her life when inexorable change is more apparent than ever. Elinor Carucci, continues her immersive and close-up examination of her own life in this volume, portraying this moment in vibrant detail. As one of the most autobiographically rigorous photographers of her generation, Carucci recruits and revisits the same members of her family that we have seen since her work gained prominence two decades ago. Even as we observe telling details, graying hair, the pressures and joys of marriage, episodes of pronounced illness, the evolution of her aging parents’ roles as grandparents, her children’s increasing independence, we are invited to reflect on the experiences that we all share contending with the challenges of life, love, and change.

Enjoy!

Back to Uni: Tips and Tricks for buying your books online

Mid-January is the beginning of the Back to School / Uni rush – which can be fun for stationery-addicts like me, but can also be a stressful time, with so many things to pay for all at the same time!  Luckily, Booko can help lighten this load, and today we’ll show you how to join other savvy students in using Booko to find the best prices for your textbooks.  What’s more, Booko has set-and-forget alerts and lists features that can help you organise future purchases!

Let’s start by checking the price of this Accounting textbook:

Booko’s standard search finds you the best prices for right now.  The first list of prices (with an orange heading) is for New copies; if you are interested in Used / second-hand copies, just scroll further down, and copies available will be listed in the second table (with a purple heading).  Don’t forget to check that you are searching for the correct edition!

Creating Alerts and Lists

For even better deals, Booko offers a set-and-forget Alerts and a Lists feature. Booko Alerts regularly checks the prices for your chosen items and will email you as soon as the price falls below the current (or a specified) level. It’s a great way to monitor for sales.  To set an Alert, first search for the book you want – if possible, use the ISBN to confirm the correct edition.

Using the accounting textbook again as an example, the top listing on the Right is the current best price. To create an Alert, click the Add an Alert button below the Cover Image on the left side of the page.  Set your preferred price – and you can set separate prices for new and used books. Then enter your email and click Add.  Now all you need to do is wait for the Good News email! 

If you are logged into your Booko account, you can set an Alert faster, because you won’t need to enter your email each time.  A Booko account allows you to modify your alerts (delete or change target prices) more easily, as a list. 

A Booko account also allows you to set up Lists.  These help you sort and group the books you are watching for.  To add a book to a list, click the Add to List button below the Cover Image (next to the Add an Alert button). This adds the book to your Wishlist (the default list for each Booko account).  To create more lists, click on the My Lists tab on the Top Right of the page, then click the Manage Lists button.

The Manage Lists option has several nifty features – here you create new personalised lists (A), View/Edit or Delete existing lists, or Export list data in a spreadsheet-friendly format (B).  Booko will also tell you whether you can buy all your list items from a single store (C) – and do a price comparison as well.

Booko Alerts and Booko Lists can help you minimise the time and money you need for your back-to-uni essentials – so that you’ll have more time to relax before Term / Semester starts!