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and well written, as may be expected from a photographer/scientist with years of experience as a technical educationalist. Holograms filled a muchneeded gap in the available literature at that time, in addition to serving as a splendid primer for those new to the subject. (Prentice Hall, 1988) is twice as big as Holograms though no less easy to read. In this second text the author not only brings the reader up to date but concentrates more on the varied types of hologram that can be made rather than taking the reader through more advanced theory. Lavishly filled with diagrams of various holographic systems and supported by numerous photographs (aswell as two reflection holograms) this work documents the current state of the art today, both in technical and aesthetic applications. Not only is the Manual o f Practical Holography considerably less expensive than the earlier Practical Holography, it is dedicated to all who work with creative imagery. The Manual of Practical Holography still retains most of the facts contained in Saxby's earlier books-leaving out only those items no longer of practical importance to the current work. The diagrams and photographs are truly excellent, anticipating questions that must surely arise in the reader's mind as he or she progresses in understanding the relatively complex systems involved. In his preface the author admits an intention to keep mathematics and formulae out of the book, not an easy thing to do with this subject! I think he has managed this very well, with perhaps only a slight lapse here and there, where out of habit he uses symbols not common to art-trained readers-for example, the caption to Fig. 7.3 on p. 66 indicates (d2> d1)but this can hardly be considered a strong criticism! It is never easy for an author to gloss over scientificmatters in order to get to the practical issues of a technical subject.Indeed the easy way is to use formulae and mathematics and leave the rest to the qualified reader. The opposing alternative is to ignore such items completely in the hope that one has authored a popular book, regardless of its practical value. The trick lies some-' where in the middle, and Graham Saxby is a master at achievingjust the right level without sacrificing knowledge. His second book Practical Holography Considering the limited amount of text devoted to purely scientific matters (i.e. electromagnetic waves, diffraction, interference and coherence), it is surprising how well these difficult issues fit into the text in a meaningful way. One imagines the author must have spent a great deal of time snipping away at the difficult bits to achieve such results. However, the important subjects are never ignored, and it is very much to the author's credit that where practical issues such as polarisation are concerned a good number of pages have been devoted to its theory and understanding . The main thrust of this work is practical and the text fullyjustifies the book title. The first two chapters are devoted to basic science and the nature of holography, but in chapter three the reader is guided to making his or her first hologram. As might be expected, this is a simple Denisyuk reflection hologram, and setting up the subject, filmloading, exposure and processing are all covered in an easy-to-understand fashion almost guaranteed to provide first-time success. Chapter three is important since it establishes a practical tone to the book at an early stage, and the author sensibly closes the chapter with an analysis of possible faults or failures -immediately following a short paragraph on displaying the imagewhich brings me to my one and only criticism of the entire book. Like his earlier work (1988),the front-cover reflection hologram can be a poor introduction to holography unless the viewer places the book at an ideal position with respect to an ideal light source. But most bookshops are illuminated by diffuse sources that are far from ideal, and when viewed under these conditions the majority of firsttime viewers fail to see the hologram correctly. Surely it would benefit everyone if some simple viewing directions were to accompany the hologram? The book is...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1530-9282
Print ISSN
0024-094X
Pages
p. 88
Launched on MUSE
2017-01-04
Open Access
No
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