Michael Freeman?s Photo School Light and Lighting - Review

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Light and Lighting cover image

Michael Freeman's Photo School Light and Lighting

Michael Freeman's Photo School Light & Lighting by Michael Freeman | 160 pages | ILEX | Paperback | 2012 | ISBN: 978-1-908150-28-8 |

As photography is all about the capturing of light on your camera sensor (or film) it is really important to learn about light and lighting especially in photographic terms, and so we turn to Michael Freeman?s Photography school Light & Lighting.

The Style

As with our previous review of Michael Freemans Photo School series, the same style prevails. It is easy to understand in most places, while in some you may need to re-read segments to make sure the information sticks, this is not due to the writing but the subject matter, and level that you go into. The chapters are well thought out and the photographic work that accompanies the text is superb.

This book, again, has a feel of a college course and again it is not just with the depth with which the subject matter is studied but also with the interaction offered via a dedicated website, and the use of a group of photographers whose work is critiqued after each chapter.


In the majority of the book the detail that Michael Freeman goes into on each subject is incredible, the lessons will teach you almost everything you need to know about lighting (I say almost everything, I found one omission, see bad points later on). Covering subjects from the fundamentals to daylight, artificial light to different lighting styles.

Each lesson teaches you in an in-depth but easy to understand manner, with superb accompanying illustrations that really do help to emphasise points made in the text. These are followed by Challenges to get you involved and attempting to put the lessons to work, which I think are a great help in getting lessons to stick. After these you will then see the assessment of two photographs (taken by the afore mentioned group of photographers) which again I think helps to show the reader what can be achieved while also showing how a photo can be critiqued in order to help improve your work.

Bad Points

My only negative issue with the whole book is an omission of information. While different types of artificial light are well covered and the use of white balance or post production techniques are described in order to ?fix? the potential issues, there is no real mention of using filters on your flash in order to match colour temperatures of the surrounding lights, this is something I am only just getting to grips with but I would have thought it an important enough issue in lighting to receive at least some write up.

Beyond that I really cannot fault this book, it covers in great detail so much about lighting that it is really worth perusing.

Who is it for?

While I guess the real target audience is those who are newish to photography and looking to really move their photography to a new level, I think there is plenty here for those who already have a good knowledge but want to learn the more technical aspects (often it is easy to do something without fully understanding it). Even the most experienced might find something here (but I would not like to second guess people with far more knowledge than I).


Well written, easy to read and full of interesting and very detailed information on Light and Lighting, if you are in need of improving your knowledge of this subject then it is worth your while picking up this book. I would highly recommend this book to any photographer, especially (but not exclusively) those who are starting out.

Available from Ilex ? Michal Freeman?s Photo School Light & Lighting

Ashley Beolens

Created: 19th Jan 2013