Macro or Close-up photography is a fascinating pursuit that reveals the world around us in new and amazing ways. It is also fairly technical by nature and can appear difficult to master, even to a small degree. But have no fear, Rotenberg and Lustbader run a stock agency and know what makes a good photograph. They also know how to explain the principles behind macro photography in a way that anyone can understand.
Because this is a technical subject it is not surprising to find that more than half of this soft backed book is dedicated to exploring various technical matters. By doing so the reader can be assured of comprehensive instruction, thereby allowing knowledge to blossom into understanding. The chapters covering exposure, depth of field and equipment include a lot of photographic common knowledge but also expand to take in that which is particular to close-up photography. Building on this foundation more detailed information is given on magnification devices, filters, film and light.
Once these technical matters are dealt with the writers turn our attention to more artistic matters. Good aesthetics and composition of an image are essential for a successful close-up photograph, and two chapters cover these. The book is then rounded off with a short chapter on the too-little discussed subject of ethics and a listing of the authors' favourite locations, which will be of limited use to anyone outside of the United States.
The one hundred and twenty one pages are laid out to show a mixture of text and pictures. Each picture is accompanied by an extended caption allowing the reader to easily link illustrations with the text. As there are more photographs than pages the readers' eye is never far from a stunning picture. Most pictures are used to illustrate a single point but occasionally photographs are placed side by side for direct comparison of a particular effect. This is an excellent way of getting a point over and adds to the value of this particular book.
Overall I think that this is an excellent book and a worthy purchase for anyone looking to learn more about macro photography.