“FOUR HUNDRED THOUSAND READERS can’t be wrong. A book that needs reprinting twice every twelve months is sure to be right” It says on the inside of the dust cover.
This is a lovely book, full of enthusiasm and encouragement. It takes the reader through the technicalities of photography in an easy to understand manner.
It’s full of diagrams and illustrations, and has photos with captions explaining how to achieve similar results. I first read this as a library book many years ago, and I still enjoy reading it now.
I think this book had quite a wide reputation as a good one for beginners, as the phrase “W.D. Emanuel’s All in One Camera Book” can be found on the front cover. This 1959 edition was the 43rd, but the first edition was 1939. the latest edition I've found was 1975.
Photographic technology has moved on a long way since ’59. Most film was much less sensitive to light then, and very few cameras had built in light meters.
Cameras were very expensive for their price compared to cameras today, with our modern mass production techniques.
For example, the Ilford Sportsman camera in the photo at the top of the post was sold new in 1962, on a hire purchase agreement. It’s a well made camera and has a nice lens (not a zoom), simple 3 speed shutter, scale focusing, and no light meter.
It cost £15 4s 9d (£15.21) when the average weekly wage was £12 3s 6d (£12.18) It’s quite a useable camera, but oh, the price!
This book makes good, easy bedtime reading for this experienced photographer, and I like the way it explains things that beginners often found difficult. As it says on the front, "43 editions, 430,000 better photographers"
All in One Camera Book by W.D. Emanuel.