12 Books to Help You Take Better Pictures

Cameras are everywhere these days. Most of us carry at least one around with us daily (camera phone, anyone?) and we likely have access to at least one other. Whether you have a point and shoot, a digital SLR, or an old-school film camera, chances are, you want to take better pictures.

12 Books to Help You Take Better Pictures

Today, I’m sharing a collection of books that have spent a couple months in my house courtesy of our library. There is something for everyone here.

Snapp Shots: How to Take Great Pictures with Smartphones and Apps by Adam Bronkhorst – This is a fun book. It covers your basics like understanding how your phone’s camera works, setting up a good shot, and editing. My personal favorite sections were the last three: Using the Shot, Taking it Farther, and Accessories.

Sixty Tips for Creative iPhone Photography by Martina Holmberg – Obviously, this book is geared specifically for iPhone users. It covers the very basics like what an app is, and moves on to more advanced subjects. The tips are short but effective. There are a lot of examples to illustrate the tips, too. There is also a section on video and plenty of app suggestions.

The Unforgettable Photograph: 228 Ideas, Tips, and Secrets for Taking the Best Pictures of Your Life by George Lange with Scott Mowbray – The subtitle on this one sets pretty lofty expectations, doesn’t it? If you read this, I don’t think you can help but take better pictures. Photography is about more than pressing a button on a camera. This book focuses more on the storytelling of photography and why it is important in creating better pictures.

Mamarazzi: Every Mom’s Guide to Photographing Kids by Stacy Wasmuth – This book is geared for moms who want to take better pictures of their kids, but it is helpful if you want to shoot other people’s kids, too…with a camera, of course. Each section includes a focus on a professional photographer for even more ideas.

The Beginner’s Photography Guide: The Ultimate Step-By-Step Manual for Getting the Most From Your Digital Camera by DK Publishing – This is a very good, visual guide book. Lots of photos and illustrations to show you exactly what they are talking about. This book includes a section on equipment that is very helpful.

The iPhone Photographer: How to Take Professional Photographs with Your iPhone by Michael Fagans – Each section tells of a specific session the photographer shot, including apps used. Aside from the apps, this book could work for any camera phone, I think.

Art of Everyday Photography: Move Toward Manual & Make Creative Photos by Susan Tuttle – This is a good guide for those who want to start working with the manual settings on their DSLR cameras. Great info that covers portrait, food, nature, and everyday life photography.

Understanding Flash Photography: How to Shoot Great Photographs Using Electronic Flash by Bryan Peterson – This is a great, thorough look into using a flash in your photos. There is an art to creating great photos with a flash, flash can make your pictures flat and wash out the subjects. Understanding how it works will help you take better pictures with flash.

Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs With Any Camera by Bryan Peterson – Another thorough book, this time on exposure. This is a great next step book for those looking to break away from the presets on their DSLR and gain experience shooting in manual modes.

Your Baby in Pictures: The New Parents’ Guide to Photographing Your Baby’s First Year by Me Ra Koh – This book is broken down by age brackets for ideas on what to capture when. Each suggestion includes tips for those working with a point and shoot camera and those working with a digital SLR camera.

A Beautiful Mess Photo Idea Book: 95 Inspiring Ideas for Photographing Your Friends, Your World, and Yourself by Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman – This is an inspirational book. It doesn’t focus so much on the technical side of photography, but on the composition and creative side. This book includes creative ideas for props and backgrounds, too.

Expressive Photography: The Shutter Sisters’ Guide to Shooting From the Heart by The Shutter Sisters – The sections in this book are categorized like this: Horizons, Portraiture, Nature, Documentary, Togetherness, etc. Each section includes an introduction, approach, perspective, composition, lighting, details, and processing. The book is written by several photographers, so there is a variety of thought processes shared.

There you have it, 12 books to help you take better pictures. Pick one up from Amazon today or see if your library has it. Either way, start reading and then start clicking!

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Perfect timing, I had added looking for a good photography book for camera phones on my to do list! You made my task much easier, this is a great resource, thank you!