Photographers’ Sketchbooks

23 - Stephen McLaren and Brian Formhals - Photgraphers' Sketchbooks

The Photographers’ Sketchbook by McLaren and Formhals (2014) brings together in one volume the work of 49 photographers. Each photographer describes their work and in particular the specific project that has been included.

I found the book interesting because it highlights the thought processes behind the work of experience photographers and how they decided to do the projects that have been included. Some of the projects have seen the light of day while other projects were either aborted, put on hold or are still works in progress.

The variety of work included also shows that anything is possible as a theme.

Some of the projects I think also show that photographers have to have a level of confidence, especially when dealing with people.

The Photographers’ Sketchbook is something that having read it through completely, I will dip into in order to draw inspiration from the work of professional and experience photographers when my own work touches upon theirs.

For someone who is only just getting into the theory behind photography and starting to look at the work of other photographers this book is a great way to get to know a number of them.

The only negative I have with regards to the book is that after not a huge amount of time and handling the cover and binding seem a bit flimsy. It wouldn’t take a lot more handling before the pages came loose from the cover. Something I wouldn’t have expected from a book with a similar price tag.


  1. McLaren, S & Formhals, B. (2014) Photographers’ Sketchbook. 1st edn. United Kingdom: Thames and Hudson.

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