If you like nature and landscape photography and have the desire to give it a try, these two fine new books from Rocky Nook can both inspire and instruct. The books also could make good Christmas gifts for a budding nature or landscape photographer in your family.
Plateaus and Canyons: Impressions of the American Southwest
By Bruce Barnbaum
(Rocky Nook, paperback, list price $44.95)
In Plateaus and Canyons, veteran photographer Bruce Barnbaum presents 95 large-format color images from the rugged Colorado Plateau that is part of four Southwestern states.
Barnbaum is widely known as an artistic practitioner of black-and-white photography. But in this elegant collection, he has captured fine images that blend amazing colors and subtleties of light, both in deep canyons and on jagged, multi-level plateau surfaces that definitely are not flat.
Each photo is accompanied by a short essay by Barnbaum, discussing how he came across the opportunity to capture the image and why it attracted him.
For example, in a remote area known as Phillips Wash, “[t]he twisted branches of an old, fallen, silvered juniper caught my eye…[t]he nearly colorless wood against the soft tans and golds of the sandstone rocks created a wonderfully compelling array of forms.”
Nature and Landscape Photography: 71 Tips from the Top
By Martin Borg
(Rocky Nook, paperback, list price $19.95; Kindle edition, list price $9.99)
This book contains many very good landscape and nature images, as well. But the concise accompanying text focuses on how to use important photographic composition techniques in the field.
Some of these include seeking elevated vantage points, using the “Golden Ratio” in compositions, properly staging water reflections, making longer exposures to capture the effect of wind moving tree leaves and grasses, and challenging the basic rules of composition – after you have learned them.
The book’s author, a Swedish photojournalist, views nature as “an endless source of fascinating images.” He adds: “Images of nature affect us deeply; they appeal to our roots.”
— Si Dunn