Jim Zuckerman, contributing editor to Petersen’s Photographic Magazine, is a master of all forms of photography, especially nature photography, though he loves pushing the limits with digital and studio manipulation. He has published many articles and books on his work, helping others learn various photographic techniques. As fans of his work for a very long time, we’ve singled out a few of his best books to help you build your photography library with some of the best work.
Zuckerman’s work is always outstanding and he tackles some core elements of nature photography technique as well as expands your perspective on nature photography in his latest books.
Often two photographs of teh same location can appear dramatically different even when taken only forty-five minutes apart…At dawn, when the color temperature is high (about 12,000 Kelvin), the scene is rendered in deep blue and purple tones…As soon as the sun breaks the horizon, the whole scene changes dramatically. The color temperature drops immediately from 12,000 Kelvin to perhaps 3,500 degrees Kelvin, bathing the landscape in a warm light.
Techniques of Natural Light Photography by Jim Zuckerman
“Techniques of Natural Light Photography”, in easy to understand language necessary for anyone interested in nature photography, opens up your mind to the wonders and variety of natural light. Understanding how the colors and intensity and “nature” of light impacts the photograph is critical to successful photography.
In “Perfect Exposure”, again, Zuckerman tackles the simple but introduces it in a new way so you see beyond the simple essense of exposure in photography to understand the importance it really plays in the art form. He concentrates on working with a hand held meter to backup your in-camera meter, but also shows you how to do both.
With “Secrets of Color Photography”, Zuckerman again tackles an area that has been done before but moves beyond the “Kodak how to” to really help the nature photographer understand the role color plays in photography, understanding film, exposure, light, and how they all impact the image with color. Fascinating and very well done.
And as if we haven’t gotten enough from his beautiful and powerful technical books, in “Capturing the Drama of Nature Photography”, Zuckerman takes us inside the complexity and magic of nature and wildlife to show us how to bring the “drama” to the image. How to understand your subject, the lighting, and its environment to time and plan your photographic opportunities not just grab it as it comes.
Shooting and Selling Your Photographs
Once you have a clear understanding of the process, Zuckerman’s book on “Shooting & Selling Your Photos: The Complete Guide to Making Money With Your Photography” and his other business book, “The Professional Photographer’s Guide to Shooting and Selling Nature and Wildlife Photos” takes you into the basics that helped him become a successful nature photographer whose work is seen in magazines, books, posters, and more all over the world. It’s nice when a serious pro takes time out to share his or her path to fame, giving others a boost up. I call it “setting a higher standard” that all of us need to attain.
Zuckerman doesn’t limit his imagination or photographic work to strictly nature. With the rise in digital photography, he has gone in “whole hog” as they say in the South. His articles and books on digitial photography and digital imaging take you beyond the possible for amazing special effects and techniques for creating photographs for the new century. In “Digital Effects” and “Outstanding Special Effects Photography”, much of the work he does is with a medium format camera, but the same effects can be done with 35mm and a computer. Maybe it’s time for you to explore beyond the limits of film?