The Photograph
Composition & Color Design
By Harald Mante
Publisher: Rocky Nook
Final Release Date: March 2008
Pages: 280

Harald Mante, one of the most distinguished teachers of the photographic arts in Germany and an internationally recognized master of photography, brings his teaching to us in the English language for the first time in more than 30 years. In The Photograph Mante explains the elements that are essential to achieving the highest level of visual design in photographs. This book is geared toward the serious intermediate and advanced photographer who strives to create outstanding images.

While a deep understanding of photographic techniques is required in order to master photography, technical knowledge alone is not sufficient to create outstanding images. Beyond the technical aspects, the crucial elements that determine the quality and strength of a photograph are the content of the image and its organization within the image frame. This is where the "art" of photography comes into play. Truly creative photography is based upon knowledge and mastery of design and of how the viewer perceives images. The creative photographer can exploit this knowledge and push image-making in new directions.

Mante explores the principles of line, shape, point, color, contrast, composition, and design in significantly greater depth and at a higher level than most any book available to date. He also covers a number of techniques to enhance expressiveness in a photograph to support the photographer's intentions.

These in-depth lessons are beautifully illustrated with more than 600 images from Mante's own portfolio, plus over 160 diagrams.

The Photograph is a unique book that is sure to become an invaluable reference for anyone involved in photography-from the hobbyist to the professional; for both the digital and analog photographer; and for those practicing, studying, criticizing, or administering in the visual arts.

Product Details
Recommended for You
Customer Reviews


by PowerReviews
oreillyThe Photograph

(based on 1 review)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars



  • 4 Stars



  • 3 Stars



  • 2 Stars



  • 1 Stars



Reviewed by 1 customer

Displaying review 1

Back to top

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


A must read

By Andre Cajolais

from Québec, Canada

Staff Reviewer


  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


    Best Uses

    • Intermediate
    • Novice
    • Student

    Comments about oreilly The Photograph:

    A must read book for those concerned by image quality and efficiency

    If you had just one book to read about composition and image design, you'd have to read Harald Mante's The Photograph.

    Mante is a famous German photographer and teacher, his reputation has crossed the globe.

    Back in the mid 70's, while making my degree in Communications Arts, our photography teacher recommanded we buy the first edition of Mante's The Composition, published then in German (original edition) and in French. A revelation. I still have in my librairy. This new edition of The Photograph is more complete, and adapted to the digital technology. Every aspects of composition and color design – the point, the line, the shapes, the colors, the position of the elements -, is explained and demonstrated, step by step.

    Whether you are a photographer, a cinematographer, a designer, painter, Mante's teachings will help you make more effective images, images with impact and the more important, emotion. Reading this book and applying those concepts will change your way to look and feel at an image. A must read if your concerned about aesthetics and efficiency of their images.

    Displaying review 1

    Back to top

    Buy 2 Get 1 Free Free Shipping Guarantee
    Buying Options