Newest Review: ... the time of writing has features on shooting extreme sports, capturing sunsets, a guide to wedding photography, macro insects, getting exp... more
Expose yourself to better photography
Photography Monthly Magazine
Member Name: Chelle1969
Photography Monthly Magazine
Advantages: Packed with info, reasonably priced
There are many photography magazines to be found on the newsagent's shelves, many are quite specialised or aimed at a particular market and it can be difficult to choose one that's right for you. Photography Monthly is a glossy 148-page magazine covering a broad spectrum of topics and aimed at a wide market from amateur to experienced, offering expert advice, tips and tutorials to help readers improve their photography techniques.
It is published on the second Thursday of every month, widely available from good newsagents and has a cover price of £3.95 but if you subscribe you can make great savings. For example you can currently get 12 issues for £32 (just £2.67 per issue).
Unlike some magazines it doesn't hike up the price to include 'free' gadgets or cover discs but relies instead on great content.
Every issue has features giving expert advice on various techniques, these are often contributed by readers with a specialist interest or by professional photographers and of course the magazine's own team of writers. As an example, the current issue at the time of writing has features on shooting extreme sports, capturing sunsets, a guide to wedding photography, macro insects, getting exposure spot on, shooting your local area and using a 50mm lens. These features are always interesting, clear and easy to understand and very well illustrated with some quite stunning images.
There's a regular section called 'Digital Workshop' where each month tutorials are given to help with post-production in your computer. They don't assume everybody who enjoys taking photos is a computer expert, so the skill level required varies, with topics such as removing dust and dirt from images, cloning, and blurring backgrounds. A recent addition in this section is the option of following the tutorials using the actual photos they use by downloading them from the magazine's web site.
In each issue various bits of kit are put to the test by the magazine's team. Often it's a new camera which is given a full work out and then extensively reviewed, but they also test new models against older ones, compare different makes within a price range, or choose specific items just as flashguns, bags, printers or particular lenses within a focal range. Invaluable advice if you're looking to buy something new.
Alongside all this are regular sections such as reader's letters (a prize for the best one), news from the industry, competitions and as in all photo magazines, an extensive section of advertising.
I've been subscribing to Photography Monthly almost since it began about eight years ago and in that time I've seen it change and develop just as photography itself has changed and become so much more accessible with the advent of cheap digital cameras and mobile phone technology. The magazine today features very little to do with film photography (much to the dismay of a minority of readers) but has embraced all that digital has to offer. That's not to say that the old ways have been forgotten, the advice and practical tips given throughout are generally in the ways of improving your photography through traditional in-camera methods rather than mass digital post-production manipulation.
The magazine feels like a quality publication printed on good quality paper and the standard of the print, especially seen in some of the stunning images they feature, is very, very good. The magazine is professionally laid out, clear and user friendly to read. It's packed full of information and articles as described above, and within each of these are usually little boxes with extra tips and hints. I find the writing team comes across as friendly and knowledgeable, almost like a family, and they encourage reader contributions whether it be a letter, article or examples of your portfolio to showcase in the magazine.
I don't think that Photography Monthly is aimed at the professional photographer out there, although I dare say that many pro's do enjoy it and still find something of interest, it's aimed more at the amateur and enthusiasts market. I find one of the best things about reading the magazine is that it fires me up and gives me inspiration to pick up my camera and go out and take photos, and for me that alone is worth the cover price.
Whether you're a hobbyist with a compact or an experienced semi-pro there'll be something in this magazine to help you improve your photos. It's a cracking good read!
More info can be seen at www.photographymonthly.com
Summary: If you want to improve your photography, grab a copy today