A Review of Joe McNally’s The Moment it Clicks

I’ve come to know a fair bit about Joe McNally this past year. I’ve seen his courses on Kelby training and I may have come across one of his DVDs or two. Knowing his style, I purchased an electronic version of this book without checking out a sample first (something I don’t typically do) as I assumed I knew what to expect. The Moment it Clicks, however, as is typically the case when I make an assumption, was not what I had expected.

Had I bothered to download a sample I probably wouldn’t have purchased the book, as at the time I was looking more for a training guide. Something technical. Something with lighting tips and strategies. Something that would help me produce shots that were one iota as beautiful as what Joe can do. Had I download the sample and not purchased the book I would have, however, missed out on a fantastic read.


Organized into a series of short anecdotes surrounding the making of one Joe’s (or should I be saying Mr. Mcnally’s) pictures the book never really goes through his lighting setups in much detail. Joe will throw in a small ‘the flash was mounted outside the window’ here and ‘it was gelled with a half cut CTO’ there, but that’s not the point. What he does share are series of mini revelations, stories and thoughts on perseverance, mentality, life and motivation from a behind the lens perspective.

Now admittedly I’m far from what you’d call a professional photographer but what I can tell you is that if you’re looking for book on lighting that’s technical in everyday, this book definitely isn’t for you. However, if you wanna a new perspective on your photography, attitude and even life, check this book out. You may be pleasantly surprised, too.

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