The folks who publish my books (the awesome team at Peachpit Press), put out a press release yesterday announcing that according to research data compiled by Nielsen Bookscan, I was the #1 bestselling author of photography books for 2011 (here’s the link to their release). Yay! :)

I’m actually really psyched for two reasons: the first being that this is my 2nd year in a row in the #1 spot. Back in 2009 I was in 2nd place because this one guy beat me out, but the other reason is: being the #1 bestselling photography book author sounds a whole lot cooler than what I was for the previous six years: the #1 computer and technology book author, which kinda sounds like a distinction that might get you beat up at the playground. Thankfully, they now separate the photography book sales from the computer/technology category (they used to lump them in together) which I think makes a lot of sense (and keeps the bullies away at recess).

My Publisher, Nancy Aldrich-Ruenzel wrote a blog post about it with more details (here’s the link), but before you jump over there, I want you all to know that I couldn’t have done it without Nancy and her incredible team (Scott Cowlin, Sara Jane Todd, my Editor Ted Waitt, and all the great people at Peachpit and New Riders) who make all of this possible in the first place. I’m indebted to them for everything they do to support my books and help them reach the largest audience possible.

I also owe a huge thanks to my in-house book team, including my Editor Kim Doty, Creative Director Felix Nelson, my book designer Jessica Maldonado, my Tech Editor Cindy Synder, and to Dave Damstra and his layout team; they are truly my secret weapon. I’m really blessed to be able to work with such talented, passionate and creative people.

Of course, most importantly I want to thank you—-the wonderful people who buy my books and give me the opportunity to write more books (if your books don’t sell, your book writing career comes to a screeching halt). Your support, and tireless ability to put up with my quirky sense of humor, allows me to continue on as a writer, and I just can’t thank you all enough.

Oh yeah, one more thing: “Whoo Hoo!!” :-)

About The Author

Scott is the President of KelbyOne, an online educational community for Photographers, Photoshop and Lightroom users. He's editor and publisher of Photoshop User Magazine, Conference Technical Chair for the Photoshop World Conference & Expo, and the author of a string of bestselling Photoshop, Lightroom, and photography books.

82 Comments

  1. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy! Even if he did have questionable hair in the 80’s…

  2. Thank you for all that you do. You’re an awesome teacher!

  3. Congrats Scott … you did it again ;-) … True quality stays on top forever…

  4. That is why I buy your books Scott, because of your quirky sense of humor. 8-) Congratulations!

  5. I’m hoping soon we get a ‘Sports Photography’ book in the same vein as Alan Hess’ Concert Photography one from you :0)
    Congratulations my friend.
    “We’re gonna need a bigger bookshelf”

  6. Well desirved Scott!
    Never forget that we only buy them becaue of the quality instruction and very entertaining way you and your staff aproach a project.
    Thank you forall the knowledge and yes hours of entertainment you have given m, I loo forward tomany mor books and years of allthings Kelby!

  7. Congratulations!  Your books are always my first choice when it comes to photography, lightroom and photoshop.

  8. I received my degree for Film Production in 2004 from Full Sail Real World Education in Orlando, FL…after graduation I moved back to MI to be with my family. After an uncountable unsuccessful attempts of finding a job in my industry, I gave up and pursued other avenues. Eventually I decided to pick up still photography as a hobby. Having only dabbled in it from school, I went to Borders Books (no longer open) and discovered the Digital Photography Book Vol. 2. After reading that, you inspired me so I then purchased 1 (online) and 3 (in store). I then also purchased your book recommendations.

    Because of your inspiration, honesty, guidence, and expertise, I now run my own company, still not off the ground, but getting there. I must thank you for everything, and my fiance for commercial support. Ha ha. You deserve the recognition you receive. I’m grateful I bought your books, and glad that I now follow you, and a few other of your friends/colleagues on twitter.

    Keep it going my man.

    Dustin from D Stone Productions.

  9. Awesome news, congrats Scott!

  10. I am not surprised at all that you are number 1.  I am a police officer and teacher (I train cops).  Photography is a “newish” hobby (6 months).  I know what it takes to teach.  You, Mr. Kelby, have the talent it takes.  You know how to break down the basics into “learnable” nuggets.  Any new hobbyist would benefit from your work.  And let’s be honest, that’s your audience…as far as your books go..the beginner.  If you are a beginner reading this, you are a fool if you don’t “invest” in Mr. Kelby’s books.  It was the best start I ever made.  Nice job Mr. Kelby.  Keep ’em coming.  I don’t know what in the newest book (#4) but I hope it’s a “little” more advanced.  You can move up a little as you go.  Please don’t get caught in the “rehash” trend.  Mr. Kelby, you may use any part of this msg if you so desire.  I’m a fan so it’s okay by me.  Thanks again.

    • Hi Humdog: Thanks so much for the kind words (and for the shout out to new photographers to pick up my books. They are definitely for people new to photography. When the first book came out, I went on my podcast, held up the book, and said, “If you’re an experienced photographer…don’t buy this book!” As for Part 4: it’s the most advanced of the set, but it’s still for people who have read Parts 1, 2 and 3.” I’ve covered so many basics in the previous volumes that Vol 4 definitely takes it up a notch. You’ll be happy to know, there is NO overlap with previous volumes — it’s all new content, so there’s no rehashing it in at all. :) Thanks again. :)

  11. Congratulations my friend! So very well deserved.

    • Thanks Dave. Ya know, I had an awesome tech editor for my retouching book! That sure didn’t hurt! :)   Thanks for your support, and for helping to make that book such a success. I’ve learned a lot from you, and I’m very grateful to have you on our team, and a part of our family. :)

  12.  Very nice post, thank you for information.

  13. Great news Scott! I’ve learned so much from reading your books. I can’t wait to read the new volume 4 of your Digital Photography Book!

  14. Glad I could do my part to get you there.  :-).  Very well deserved.  I can’t wait for your Digital Photography vol 4 to come out.

  15. Scott,

    I have a few of  them there books and the honor is well deserved. 

  16. Well deserved, Mr Kelby,congrats!

  17. Glad I could help. Please keep writing!

  18. Huge congrats to you, Scott!  Keep writing those fabulous books and we’ll keep buying them!

    –John

  19. Congratulations Scott! You’re amazing with your skills. In my circles you are always recommended as the author to go to, especially to anyone new to photography. Great job, well deserved.

  20. Well done Scott.  Really looking forward to Volume 4.  Keep checking my pre-order, on Amazon, to see if it will sneak out early.

    Hope this series of books keeps going.  Maybe they’ll be the photographic equivalent of the “Now that’s what I call Music” series :)

  21. Your “quirky” sense of humor is great, and yours are the only photog books I actually laugh out loud from. However, and I don’t mean to poop on your poptart, but I find the books at Peachpit Press rather expensive and I get mine from Sams Club or Amazon, even Walmart.com. Thanks for the awesome books and I’m glad to have helped you make your 1st or 2nd million…or is it your 3rd? Keep it up.

  22. Congratulations! I love your writing style. I think your quirky sense of humor makes reading your books more enjoyable.

  23. The way you write your books is like having my own personal mentor. Great acheivement Scott! 

  24. Congratulations Scott!

     I’m glad I was able to help you get to that level.  Keep writing the best and we will keep buying from the best.

    Ron

  25. Congratulation, Scott.  Your books are awesome!

  26. Congratulations Scott!!

  27. You write books too ???!!!

    Seriously, I have a bookcase full of them……Congratulations

  28. Fantastic news mate! Surprised?…Not in the slightest :)
    Congratulations

    Glyn

  29. Congratulations!  You keep your books easy to understand and full of useful info.  I recommend them whenever I get the chance.

  30. And for the second year in a row you beat an old, dead guy in book sales? Just waiting for your Photoshop CS6 book. I volunteer to proof read it for you.

  31. Whoo Hoo !  You deserved the honor of being numero uno!   FYI when I went digital (5-6 yrs ago) your books were my life line.  Thanks

  32. Without a doubt, your books are top notch….  well deserved honor!!

  33. Congrats!
    Your books are awesome and the honor is well deserved.

  34. Congratulations Scott!!!  As someone who owns quite a few of your books, I have to say it doesn’t surprise me though! ;)

  35. Scott, this definately calls for a resounding CAKB! I love reading your books for the down to earth dialogue and the awesome sense of humor in them. Some books I’ve read are just a pain to read but yours are so enjoyable. Congratulations, you can only be #1 if your truly the best, period. I’m proud to say I have them all!

  36. I will add to the chorus of “Well Deserved” posts. I have shelves (OK maybe not shelves but a lot) of your books and I recommend them every chance I get. I think I have re-bought your Digital Photography Book set 5 times now, because I keep giving them to new photographers I am trying to encourage as gifts (can’t wait for the fourth one to come out by the way!)

  37. Congrats Scott — Any thoughts on the new design on 500px?  

  38. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience with us; I have grown immensely in my photographic development as a result of your books, magazines and websites.
    Keep on rockin!

  39. Congrats Scott . . . and keep them books coming! I love your books and your quirky sense of humor!

  40. Congratulations Scott. Your books rock.

  41. Congratulations Scott!  A great achievement, indeed.

  42. Said it before and I’ll say it again.  THANK YOU!  This is certainly well deserved.  If it wasn’t for your Digital Photography series I found two years ago, I’m not sure I would be enjoying photography like I am today.  It’s nice to know I can pick up any of your books and feel like I have a “friend” I can always rely on to give me the right advice to get me going in the right direction.  Here’s to many more years of number 1’s!

  43. Bestselling worldwide, #1, and you still take the time to comment and chat with the rest of us. Really a rare thing Scott. Thanks so much for your instruction, your friendliness, your humility (y’know, the “woo hoo” aside), and just being a nice guy. I know that for me, your help and advice has been priceless. Geez, I hope I don’t get weepy now…..

    Congratulations!

  44. Congrats!  Your Digital Photography books are what gave me the confidence to pursue photography more seriously.  I’ll forever be grateful. 

  45. Congratulation Scott, your books are a pleasure to read and an essential foundation for understanding an ever evolving subject like photography and P.P.!
    You are a great help to all of us!
    Thank you

  46. Congratulations Scott – very well deserved and a true credit to the profession.

  47. From someone who has purchased and benefited greatly from most of your books, congratulations!
    It is well deserved. See you at PSW!

  48. A well deserved honor! Congrats!

  49. We are so proud to work with you Scott! It’s an honor.

    Scott (The Peachpit one)

  50. Congrats, Scott! That’s awesome!

  51. Congrats Scott! I’ve got ’em all. What’s the next book?

  52. I was a guest at your Phoenix event and, while your books are great, you are even better live!  Thanks for all your great work.

    But, there is one thing bad about how many people read your books and go to your events.  I can’t find anyone who has the Elinchrom beauty dish in stock!  I suspect all these places have had a run on them due to how awesome and easy you made it look to use them.  I will get one sooner or later, though.

  53. Congrats! Keep on writing, I received liht it, shoot it, retouch it as a leader of a photo walk and loved it. Definitely will be picking up more of your work…(next on my list is matts layers book though ;)

  54. Congrats Scott! Its really nice to hear from a Publisher you’ve been doing business for some years isn’t it! Makes it even more worthwhile and reassuring that you are doing a great job, which you really are by the way)! As for your sense of humor, I’ve always liked it, its one of the main reasons, as well as your no-non-sense style of writing which is why I chose, and still continue to choose your titles in the first place! I’m really pleased for you!

  55. Congratulations Scott!  I have several of your books and wouldn’t part with one of them for a single day!  And by the way… I even read those chapter intros!

  56. Congratulations Scott!  It’s very well deserved.  I cut my DSLR teeth using your basic books and am currently enjoying the step by step instructions and helpful tips in your  Adobe Photoshop Lightroom3 book.  I added a link to your website on my photography website http://marionmccristall.com

  57. Congratulations Scott, I love your books and have learned a lot from them. I attended the Light It, Shoot It, Retouch It Seminar and was fascinated by all that I was able to learn from you first hand. Congratulations, I am looking forward to getting book #4 in the Digital Photography Series. I also like the way you give Jesus praise for your gifts and talents in your books. PTL

  58. Yep, lots of instructor types do recommend your books.  They’re well written, nicely illustrated, and the content’s easy to navigate either using the table of contents, index in the back or just thumbing thru the pages. And you’re kinda funny too – in your books. And the rest of the crew does a great job with their various books as well. 

  59. Had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Kelby at PSW a couple of years ago and what a nice down to earth guy.  Been following NAPP, Kelby Training, and everything else with the Kelby name on it and have learned so much.  This guy is a very good teacher, photographer, author, musician, and business man.  Everything he does, he does it first class.  I would bet he is an awesome employer as well.  Enjoy all you do and hope you keep doing it for a long time!

  60. Congratulation my dear Scott, We are so proud of you.
    you Deserve the best.

    Best Wishes
    -Ali

  61. Congrats. Hope to once be in the top 50 ;)

  62. Scott, along with the many others, congratulations on this fine achievement. Your writing skills have helped make clear the use of PS in processing our digital pics. I knew you had a great writing future after reading your original CS photography book, many of its techniques relevant even with CS5. As for Ansel Adams, just who is this guy?

  63. Congrats Scott well deserved

  64. Congratulations!!! You are the best for me! Just don’t stop teaching us! 

  65. Good evening Scott, 

        I must say that as a long time reader of your books, including the digital photo books, photoshop, and retouching techniques – that I have received more of an education, and desire to create images because of your work, than anything else.  Presented in easy to understand concepts, and a conversational pace I find that it is exceptionally easy (now that I teach others) to put the “basic books” in student’s hands, and have them excel.  Having experienced the “Ah ha! moment” many times while reading, it is all the more fun when reflected on the faces of others.  You and the team have put together some fabulously good training, and I definitely recommend both books, live conferences, and video training (such as the photoshop user TV which got me through a year deployed in Iraq). 

      Altogether I am very happy that you have reached number one for 2011, and I find myself always wondering “what will I learn next?”.   Without a doubt you have (through your works) brought the once archaic digital processes to the forefront, drawn back the curtain, and allowed many of us to create truly quality images.  Thank you for all that you have done, and continue to do for veterans such as myself, and for those just picking up a camera for the first time.

    -Rich C.
    imagesbyrich.com
    rich@acnphotos.com

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