Although I have followed David duChemin's twitter feed and podcasts for some time, I was not directly familiar with his books or eBooks. When he began promoting it recently, I was deeply intrigued with his most recent eBook, A Deeper Frame, for personal reasons and decided to take a chance, especially given the low cost and the fantastic discount on the entire bundle of his eBooks being offered. The reason that my curiosity was peaked is because for the past six to nine months, I have personally been attempting to expand my photographic horizons significantly in terms of style (shooting, processing, seeing), but one area that I have been focusing on is the notion of conveying depth in a two-dimensional photographic image. As it turns out, this also has a significant synergy with my current job working in the Computer Vision field, which I took last November. So naturally, I was fully receptive to an exposition on this very topic by such a thoughtful artist as David.
As the author admits, David's eBooks address subjects without attempting to stretch them unnaturally into an artificially long book format. He says what he needs to say, clearly, succinctly, and without unneeded padding or elaboration. I have to admit that during my investigation of "depth," I have already encountered and attempted to internalize and use many of the concepts that are articulated in this book. But even to the extent where the concepts are already familiar, it is nice to see the thoughts laid out, re-emphasized, and organized because it reinforces the concepts and (more importantly, rightly or wrongly ;) ) makes me feel like I'm on the right path and working toward a meaningful goal.
Photographically, I think the example images (which are beautifully laid out) are extremely appropriate, and I don't get the impression that David is trying to force together some concepts or writing along with some "nice" images that he wants to show off. I never felt the images were gratuitous or that the points were forced.
The eBook starts out strong and immediately asserted itself into my mental framework. In the intermediate sections, most of the material is technical and quite familiar to me already. But it was still worth a read. For photographers who are new to thinking about this subject, they should be quite effective. David re-grabbed my attention in his section on "Depth Through Colour," which is an area where I am technically "competent," but which I have utterly failed to exploit. The reinforcement gave me a renewed energy level and inspires me to try harder to employ the techniques and concepts that I know intellectually but don't exercise effectively.
His conclusion, "Deeper Emotions," convincingly ties the rest of the book together and reminds the reader of the real purpose of the pursuit of depth, beyond the technique. It works for me because I feel that I'm at the precipice of a real step forward in my own photography.
I'm certainly glad that I made the investment in this book, and I can highly recommend it to almost any photographer who is looking to take their work to a higher level. Even if you think you already have the concepts and techniques mastered, I'll bet almost everyone will learn something about themselves and their art if you approach the book with an open mind and dispose of preconceived notions.