Creative Bird Photography By Bill Coster | 160 pages | New Holland | hardcover | 2009 | ISBN 9781847735096

The reason I found myself with a passion for photography stems from my love of birds, for a number of years I spent hours (and sometimes days) of my time trying to use a photography set up called ‘Digiscoping’ (where a camera is attached to a telescope) to get photos of all manner of different birds, unlike some, I wasn’t great at it, so bought myself an DSLR set up with a big zoom, to continue this hobby. Unfortunately I have realised over the ensuing years that bird photography is something that while I love it, I am not great at it, so when Creative Bird Photography, by Bill Coster, turned up on my doorstep I thought it would be a great read and useful tool in improving my skills.I wasn’t wrong, there are the usually basics and equipment details that you would find in any good photography tuition book, but these are geared towards the chosen subject which helps more than generic information might have (something I have seen a number of times in this type of book), and then you are into the bulk of the book, offering tips and advice on everything you should consider when trying to get those great bird shots, covering subjects from improving bird portraits to action shots, watching your back-grounds to being more creative and so much more.

The text of the book is well written. It is clear and easy to follow and is obviously written by someone who has an in depth knowledge of what they are doing and can put down on paper their techniques, which is good as all too often I have found that some of the best photographers struggle to get their techniques onto paper well. But it isn’t all about the writing, the book is interspersed well with a good number of excellent images, set to inspire (or in my case, embitter) anyone interested in this subject matter.

Has it improved my bird photography? Well it has certainly helped to make me consider back grounds and composition a bit more, but I fear I may be beyond help.

I would certainly recommend reading this book if bird photography is your thing, if for nothing other than to see how someone else does it so well.

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