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“Hey, David, I have been on 15 of your safaris, and on each one I get a very useful handout with tips on photography. Why don’t you put all these handouts together in a book?”

After hearing many comments like that over the years, we finally did it! We have used the COVID-19 downtime to produce an Ebook called “Washington Photo Safari’s Guide to Amateur Photography“.

a close up of a signBeautifully illustrated and an easy read, it is designed for amateur photographers, not professionals, people who just love to take pictures for fun and want to learn how to improve their images in 29 different categories of photography, A to Z, from Abstracts to Zoos, from Architecture to Wildlife!

It is a compendium of ALL the advice we have given our clients over the years in handouts, a 130-page downloadable Ebook that you can have on your laptop, your phone, your tablet. or even as a printout. Individual sections can also be printed separately like handouts to accompany you on your travels, or when photographing your kids, your flowers, or your events!

Founded in 1999, WPS is now 21 years old, so we feel we have FINALLY grown up enough to share the accumulated wisdom  of the 36 professional photographers who have shared their skills with  38,000 participants from 50 states and 53 countries,  conducted through 5,600 photo safaris that have taken place in 186 locations in 30 cities, 11 states,  and 8 countries on 6 continents!

Commenting on his book, WPS Founder and Director E. David Luria,  said: “I wish I had a book like this when I got started on photography at the time my kids were born!”


If you have lost the handouts we gave you on our safaris, you’ll find them here! And much more!

Weighing in at about 130 pages with illustrations, this easily searchable Ebook has several special features written by 11 professional photographers, such as:

A beautifully illustrated section on Street photography by Pulitzer Prize -Winning photographer Essdras Suarez;

Sunset on the National Mall

Special sections on flower photography and scrapbooking by floral photography expert and photobook creator Sherryl Belinsky

A special section on candid photography of young children by Lauren Ackil

A very helpful chapter on wildlife photography by award-winning nature photographer and instructor Sean Quintilian;


 (photo by Essdras Suarez)


Special sections on zoo and pet photography by professional pet and zoo animal photographer Julie Gould;

A special 10-page section on wedding photography for amateurs by professional wedding photographer Kevin Hacker, (very useful to that “Good Ole’ Uncle Dave” who volunteers to do his niece’s wedding!)

A special section on portrait photography by professional portraitist Joe Tessmer

A special section on stained glass window photography by Washington National Cathedral docent and professional photographer Elody Crimi

And from the fertile brain of WPS Founder E. David Luria you will learn:

– how to shoot exterior and interior architectural photography!

– how to find abstract images in all the least expected places!

– how to achieve “decisive moment” and “rule of thirds’’ composition!

– how to shoot birthday parties and other family and holiday events!

– how to navigate the mysteries of f-stops and shutter speeds and get off of “Auto”!

– how to make creative use of filters and white balance menus!

– how to make people disappear or turn them into ghosts!

– how to steal priceless works of art from museums with your camera or phone!

a clock tower lit up at night– how to do nighttime cityscapes and move the moon across the sky!

– how to shoot fireworks and amateur sports!

– how to shoot sunrises and sunsets, story-telling and journalism photography!

– how to photograph beautiful entrees and desserts in restaurants!

– how to take sports pictures and photos in the snow and during snowball fights!


– how to do slow-speed panning photography!

– how to photograph faces and places when you travel!

– how to do intermediate and advanced travel photography work!

It also has an Appendix, giving:

-recommendations for amateur photography equipment;

– a downloadable/ tear-out page of handy photo tips to use while shooting;

– a suggested 3-day photo itinerary in Washington DC;

– the location of best places to do flower photography in the DC/MD/VA area;

– the answers to the 20 most frequently asked questions about photography;

-a quiz to test your knowledge of photography;

-a description of Washington Photo Safari by the numbers;

– a list of all the 186 locations in which we have conducted safaris since 1999

a hand holding a cellphone

All of this is available now in eBook form, coming to you as a PDF, at a RIDICULOUS price of just $19.95, also making it a great gift item for your favorite photographer, which could very well be YOU!

Volume discounts for Photography Classes and Camera Clubs are available! Purchase 5-9 eBooks for $16.95 each or 10 or more eBooks for $11.95 each!

As new information becomes available, we will publish updated versions of the book.

Here is what one satisfied customer had to say about the eBook:


“I started looking through it this morning and I have to say it’s a steal at $19.95! So packed with useful tips and information! I still use more of what I learned in the WPS classes than any other. I have several photos I took during the Monuments at Night safari, that I had printed in B&W on canvas and I still enjoy them as much as I did when I was taking them!

“I’m glad you took the time to assemble all these tips into a reference. I’m sure it will be a big seller.”
Jake S., Haymarket, VA


“The e-book itself is a wonderful compendium of your entire WPS program.  I’m looking forward to spending time with the book and reading through all of the handouts from all of the WPS courses that I’ve could have signed up for had I lived closer to DC.  Not a substitute for the real hands-on experience, but still an opportunity to learn from you and your many fine instructors.  Once I saw the e-mail announcing the e-book, I immediately knew that I had to purchase it. 

 Thank you for publishing this e-book, which will have a permanent place in our iBook library as a handy reference to make me a much better amateur photographer.
 Dickson L., San Leandro, CA


I just finished reading it. I thought the book was well organized, informative, and maintained my interest throughout. Congratulations!

I didn’t expect to learn a lot of new tricks, but I was pretty sure it would provide a good overview and guide to local sites to capture pics of DC and environs. I also expected to learn a bit about how to convey photography info to others. And, it did not disappoint.
Doug B., Beltsville MD


I am looking forward to reading though the book and having a ready reference on my phone.  I have always enjoyed the classes offered by WPS and have learned so much but I don’t always retain it and having a resource to go to will be amazing.
Catherine M., Sykesville, MD


When WPS announced that they had compiled an e-book : “Washington Photo Safari’s Guide for Amateur Photographers” I immediately purchased and downloaded it.  I can’t begin to tell you how many other photography guides I had purchased over the years, only to become bored with the overwhelming format that many of them used.  However, the WPS e-book has proven to be the perfect guide with a format that has kept me actively engaged since it was published. 

 The true to life pictures as well as the way the material is presented is just technical enough for beginner and advanced amateur photographers.  Being an e-book, I can have it with me at all times without the added weight of carrying a physical manual or book.  Furthermore, the price, being lower than other manuals/books I had previously purchased, made this a win-win all encompassing photography reference for me!!!
Percita E., Lexington VA