Andrew Bellamy’s Analogue Photography: Reference Manual for Shooting Film is exactly what the title says: a film photography reference manual. It reminds me a good deal of the first photography-related book I bought—Technical Manual of Basic Photography, TM 1-219, July 1, 1941, a manual published by the War Department for the Army Air Forces—crossed with a 1970s camera manual and a Boy Scout Handbook, and I quite like it.

The design is simple, monochrome text on a light cream paper, and the cover has a great texture to it. As an object, it has a wonderfully classic design and character that works great for the subject. The illustrations and diagrams are simple and clear, and the text is thorough, and easy to read and understand, though I have found a few typos and spelling errors. It’s a pleasure to sit and flip through, even though I have a good grasp of all the concepts it contains.

It doesn’t have any assignments or exercises or interviews, and, frankly, it doesn’t need them. It’s a technical manual, focusing on all sides of Analog photography, from film and cameras to emulsion and metering: simple, easy to use, and easy to read.


Overall, I’d give Analog Photography: Reference Manual for Shooting Film 3.8 stars.

If you’re in the US, you can pick up a copy from Freestyle, and if you’re elsewhere, check the Ars Imago site for distributors. It’s a nice thing to have around, and worth picking up.

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