Learning to shoot in Manual: My favorite photography books!

I’ve always loved taking pictures. I remember having a 110 film camera when I was a kid and then graduating up to a 35mm. I had my Kodak 35 mm for over a decade. Then my first digital camera in 2003. I made it through college just using the computer lab but I HAD to buy my first computer because I needed it to store my pictures. Then about 4 years ago my mom gave me the rebel XSi for Christmas. My first digital SLR camera! There is so much to learn about photography and so many resources it can get confusing. After a couple day classes at the community college, online courses, and multiple books I have just recently started shooting in manual mode (sometimes). My photography has come a long way in the last year and I wanted to share some of my favorite learning resources for any other beginner photographers out there. Obviously you can tell by the book titles who my favorite person to photograph is.

I just recently found this ebookSay NO to Auto~3 Basic steps to Understanding Manual Camera Settings


Although I already knew the basics I loved how simply it was put and I wish I would have found this years ago. It gave me the confidence to shoot in manual and actually get good photos!  I think this ebook is the perfect book for anyone starting out. Krisitin explained everything so simply and tells you exactly what steps to do to shoot in manual. There is also a page listing ISO settings for certain conditions and which aperatures to use depending on the group size of people you are photographing. The book can be printed into a small 4×6 size to carry in your camera bag too. If you want a great place to start buy this ebook!

So far this is my favorite all around book. Snapshots: How to Take That Fancy DSLR Camera Off “Auto” and Photograph Your Life like a Pro by Rachel Devine and Peta Mazey


It is has information on posing, editing, and all around information on how to use your camera. The authors are great at explaining the technical stuff so it makes sense.

This book is great for any new mom. Your baby in Pictures: The New Parents’ Guide to Photographing Your Baby’s First Year by Me Ra Koh


It gives photo ideas for ages newborn through one year and tells how to set up the shot with both point and shoot and SLR cameras. It is great for inspiration photos too even if you don’t plan to take the photos yourself. I had a photographer use a couple of the poses in Jbug’s newborn session. The feet one is still one of my favorite photos.



Another inspiring book for moms. Mamarazzi: Every Mom’s Guide to Photographing Kids by Stacy Wasmuth


This is a fun book with lots of great photos and information.

Here are a couple photography websites/blogs I like too.

Digital Photography School

Kristin Duke Photography

These are just a few of my favorite photography resources for any beginners wanting to improve their skills.This year I am going to challenge myself to learn something new related to photography every month. I am also hoping to upgrade my camera, get a new lens and get some new actions for photoshop elements.

I will wrap it up with some of my favorite photos of summer!


Do you have any good photography book recommendations?




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