Introducing Photography for Designers: A book to help you become a better designer

by Tom Kenny (@tkenny)

It’s with great pleasure I can announce my new project, Photography for Designers, a book to help you become a better designer using the art of photography. Recently, I discovered designers’ love for photography, which I only noticed once my own love for photography blossomed itself. My passion of photography started almost two years ago now and in that time I’ve realised how much of a positive effect it has had on the design work I do. I see the world differently now and as a result, approach my design work from a different angle, one that gives me more freedom to experiment and try new things.

I’ve learnt a lot in the time I’ve been both a web designer and a photographer so I want to pass that knowledge on and help you become a better designer too. I could do something to that effect in a few blog posts but I want to dive into it in much more depth and really allow you to discover how photography can help you become a better designer. Blog posts simply won’t do it justice.

The outline of the book is complete (it will evolve over time as I write the book too) so you’ll be learning about things such as first impressions, composition, colour, inspiration, experimentation and much, much more. I hope to release it within the next 3-6 months and you can sign up to get notified when it’s ready for release at the Photography for Designers website.

Photography is Design

I hadn’t really considered this before I started taking photos but essentially, photography is a form of designing. When I took that photo seen in the cover, I didn’t just want it to look great, I wanted it to really show off the beauty of Iceland. I want people to look at it and say to themselves, “That looks amazing, I would love to visit Iceland”. Basically I want it to convey a message, much like we do on a day to day basis as designers.

Capturing that scene definitely required some luck but I also had to compose it, similar to how I would have to with a website. Instead of creating the elements I was simply using the world around me to “design”.

The Cover

The photo on the cover is from a small town in Iceland, called Stykkishólmur and it’s one of my favourite photos I’ve ever taken. The scene was setup perfectly, almost as if someone knew I would be walking past with my camera. As great as it looked at the time, you can never be sure how the photo itself will turn out until you get home and start editing. I’ve taken many photos that I thought would be great, at the time but turned out to be nothing special at all.

I was fortunate to stumble across this scene, especially with the weather. It really allowed the colours of the rocks, sea, sky, boats and Icelandic houses to work well together. The vivid colours portray Iceland exactly how I wanted.

The cover itself isn’t 100% complete. I will almost certainly be tweaking the typography but other than that, it’s almost there.

Here’s the full version of the photo over on my 500px account.

Not Just for Designers

I may have called it Photography for Designers but I think you will learn plenty even if you’re only interested in photography. Developers will learn from it too. The lines are starting to blur between designers and developers these days.

If you’re a designer, you know the design phase of projects usually isn’t exclusively run by designers. More often than not, many people will get involved at the design stage, so I think this book is relevant to more people than just designers. Of course, having an interest in photography will help.

Visit the Photography for Designers website to find out some more information and sign up to get notified when it will be available.

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by Tom Kenny

I’m a freelance web designer and front-end developer with 9 years of experience designing for the web. Follow me on Twitter here.