KISS Guide to Digital Photography

There are some books that are timeless. I have many fantastic books about photography that are just as amazing now as back when they were written many years ago. Their images and descriptions hold up to the passage of time.

KISS Guide to Digital Photography, written in 2004, just isn't one of those.

Part of the problem here is that the book is barely about digital photography, as in the art of taking photos with a digital camera. Instead, it spends the first half of the book talking about buying specific cameras and setting up specific desktop layouts. The second half is about playing with specific features in PhotoShop and buying scanners. Only a brief area in the middle is about actually TAKING the photo with the digital camera, which to me should be the main point of the book. There are already countless up-to-the-minute reviews of the latest cameras available which I would trust far more than any book. There are in-depth tutorials on the latest version of PhotoShop and how to use its new features. A book could never keep up with that. But the one place this book COULD shine and stay valuable, it neglects.

With the book's emphasis on details with technology, it's no surprise that so many sections of it feel ancient. He considers 3 megapixels to be huge. The recommended cameras are ancient. Images are archived onto CD, when I use a BluRay DVD player. Tripod discussions feature large, unwieldy options, when so many amazing ones are on the market now. He talks about the impossibility of taking photos with dark landscapes and bright skies, where HDR photography makes this quite doable. It goes on and on. Nearly every section has either obsolete information or details which are simply wrong in our modern world.

I'm extremely curious what happened to the KISS series. I went looking all over to try to figure out why they never updated this, and I can't seem to find any recent books in the KISS series anywhere. Did DK stop publishing them? Did they find it impossible to hold up against the Dummies series? I'm actually quite curious now. But as they apparently had no interest in updating this particular book, I can't recommend it at all. There are many fantastic books out there on this same topic which are far more useful in our modern world.

Rating: 2/5

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