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Tuesday, 29 September 2009


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Winter is not coming. We are just emerging from it here in Australia. Just a friendly reminder that your blog is read worldwide where seasons are not the same as they are in America. Enjoy your blog and read it daily. Thanks mate. Yes, I'll get the book.


That reminds me to wish all my Jewish TOP friends a Happy New Year, and a Chag Sukkot Sameach. It was raning yesterday in NJ, so our beginning of building the Sukkah got delayed from yesterday (after Yom Kippur) to today...

The first edition was a revelation to me. I wonder what has changed since then (I am still using CS2)?


Do they do winter in Australia? I thought they did summer, followed by Really Really Hot Weather, followed by summer. Similarly here in ireland we do Grey and Mild, followed by Wet and Mild. But I digress ...


Do you know if PK Sharpening is going to be updated. I have used it since it came out and always recommend it. Maybe it needs to be updated if this book is an advance on Bruce and Jeff's knowledge on the subject.


The section in the book on image resolution will save the reader its purchase price many times over.

I really miss having Bruce Fraser around. He was an inspiration and someone I respected very much.

I'd like to support your site and buy through your affiliate links but you don't put up an Amazon Canada link. How about a way for us Canucks to show you some love?

Hi Luca,
Don't worry, I love Canucks. (Really, we have a disproportionately high readership from Canada.) If you click on the "Please Help Support This Site--Use Our Amazon Links" link in the right-hand column, you'll find the link to Amazon Canada. And thanks!


"all digital photographers, whether you work with an iPhone or a medium-format digital back."

I would go further and say it it for all those who work with any images that enter a digital form, including those that are scanned from film or prints.

I suppose nothing is indispensable, but this book is as close as possible. I found the first edition revelatory, both in explaining why some things I had discovered worked and introducing me to other techniques.


Schewe is on my list as a "one-to-whom-one-listens" kind of person....guy knows his stuff down to a molecular level...just bought this book, waiting for delivery.....

I was reading Amateur Photographer at lunchtime and their "this week" column printed an extract from 1911 which herald the start of the "darkroom season". This kind of matched your winters coming comment. Images of photographers over the centuries like hibernating bears retreating into some dark sanctum to practice the less understood parts of their pursuit as the winter season approaches. By the way AP celebrates its 125th anniversary next week.


When the first ed. of this book appeared, Brooks Jensen of Lenswork recorded a podcast "A Book I Won't Be Purchasing" where he poked fun at the idea of an entire book on sharpening images. It's available here:
I agree with him completely. Mike, I never thought you'd read (and recommend to all digital photographers) such a geeky book. I'd rather read sth more exciting this winter.

Your loss. Brooks obviously hadn't read the book when he recorded the podcast. Many of Bruce's ideas are now incorporated in Photoshop and Lightroom, and sharpening is no more trivial than any of the technical miniutiae that Brooks no doubt considers important--he's well known for his preference for work that meets very high technical standards.

If it doesn't appeal, then don't buy it. Nobody's twisting your arm. But I hardly think that ridiculing it without reading or understanding it is--or could be--a fair appraisal.


There is a Kindle edition. I wonder how this would look compared to the print edition. Are there many example images in the book, and how important are they to one's understanding of the discussed concepts?


OK, so a lot of hyperbolic to and fro. but I still fail to see why I need a whole book on the subject. So I do import sharpening, contrast sharpening and export sharpening. What else do I need to know?
As a "where I'm coming from": I find most technical photographic books heavy on mystique, light on proper background theory (and sometimes wrong) and even lighter on practical ways to achieve what I want without buying the author's magic sauce action.
I am struggling to believe the subject is that complicated.

I've been feeling my approaches to sharpening were rather rote and had little theory behind them since, um, let's say 1995, so I've just added this book to my wish list (I'm not allowed to buy myself anything cheap from September until after Christmas, since my birthday plus the major seasonal commercial spasm take place in that period).

I haven't listened to the Brooks Jensen podcast ridiculing this book unread, nor have I read the book myself. So I am now uncertain what it is least stupid for ME to ridicule? I do feel some kind of urge...

After a couple of years of trying various demos of sharpening software, and trying various Unsharp Mask settings, and even buying one of the less expensive sharpening packages, I finally bought Bruce's book and created a few of the actions he gives you the recipes for in the book. Egads! This was the biggest leap in print quality improvement I've seen since getting custom paper profiles created. If you are trying to decided on this book or not, listen to some one who DID wonder why a whole book on the subject was justified, but now recommends it to all who capture on film or digicam and then print digitally. You will not be sorry.

I think it would take more than just a proper sharpening routine to make iPhone photos look good!
Thanks for the link however, I'll will order the book this week, sharpening has been a great mystery to me even after 8 years of digital photography/photoshop.

Sorry Mike ... Not too many of your recommendations I don't like but I'll stick to 'Beyond Monochrome' by Tony Worobiec & Ray Spence for my relaxation this summer.
It might be summer down under but it still gets dark early... love that darkroom. Enjoy your musings too... thanks.

A word to my fellow Canuckistanis: Amazon Canada's listing is not for the 2nd edition. Whether this is just an editorial oversight or a cross-border supply matter, I don't know.

@Mike in Montreal: search for the isbn (0321637550) and you'll find it. "Temporarily out of stock" but on order via the amazon.ca TOP link, for me.

I can't find this book locally, and I don't use Photoshop, Lightroom, or ACR. Would this book still be of interest / useful to me? (I'm using Aperture and Gimp right now.)


A whole book of good looking iphone photos.

I ordered a copy of the book via your link, so I feel I can re-register my complaint about Amazon. They can't ship something in under 1-3 weeks? What's with that nowadays? They should use the B&H model. I ordered paper and developer from B&H on Tuesday (after their long weekend) and had it yesterday. I did you use your link there too.
As for Amazon, if they weren't $20 cheaper I would never have ordered.... Thanks, love the site!

"I feel I can re-register my complaint about Amazon. They can't ship something in under 1-3 weeks? What's with that nowadays?"

I often get Amazon shipments in just a few days. In this case it's at least possible that we (TOP) have depleted Amazon's ready supply of this title--you readers have ordered a quite large number of copies in the past couple of days. Michael Reichmann has mentioned the book recently too, which has no doubt added to its sales. As of this morning it's #371 on Amazon's by-the-hour Best Seller list, which is quite high for a specialist photography book. So the delay might be situational in this case.


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