Crime Scene Photography book cover

Crime Scene Photography

Crime Scene Photography, Second Edition, offers an introduction to the basic concepts of forensic picture-taking. It covers the basic crime scene scenario, providing important details to guide the student and professional through the process in a step-by-step manner. In addition to the photographic aspect, the handling and care of evidence and maintenance of the crime scene are also addressed. The book begins by tracing the history of crime scene photography. It explains the cardinal rules of crime scene photography; the photographic variables related to exposure; and the three basic types of crime/accident scene photographs: overalls, midranges, and close-ups. This is followed by discussions on the use of digital imaging technologies and the legal issues related to photography. Each chapter begins with an outline of Learning Objective and Key Terms that will be used for the remainder of the text. Within the text are tips and rules-of-thumb that highlight important aspects of the chapter. The chapters conclude with a succinct Summary, Discussion Questions, Practical Exercises, and a comprehensive list of Further Readings. This textbook is designed for photography students in an academic setting and practitioners working within various law enforcement agencies.

Students in forensic science programs, crime scene investigator/photographers, law enforcement training centers, police academies and local agencies. Forensic consultants and forensic scientists.

Hardbound, 720 Pages

Published: February 2010

Imprint: Academic Press

ISBN: 978-0-12-375728-9


  • "[The book] addresses a technically sensitive practice with great accuracy. The writing is concise and easy to understand... The content is well organized and, fittingly, uses ample photographs as examples of both correct and incorrect ways to employ various photographic techniques. Specific topics discussed range from filters, flash, and focus to evidentiary concerns and court presentations. An excellent table of contents and index make finding specific content a breeze…. The text is written primarily for a law enforcement audience. This solid text would serve nicely, however, for security professionals who may need to document accidents, potential hazards, crimes, or property loss. It is an excellent reference and would serve both a novice and experienced photographer."--Security Management Magazine


  • Foreword to the Second Edition

    Foreword to the First Edition



    Chapter 1 History of Forensic Imaging

    My Inspiration

    The Practical Value

    The History


    Chapter 2 Composition and Cardinal Rules

    Use-Once (or, Use One Time) Camera versus a Professional Camera System

    Composition and Cardinal Rules

    Cardinal Rules of Crime Scene Photography


    Chapter 3 Basic Exposure (Non-Flash) Concepts

    The Proper Exposure Triangle

    Shutter Speed as Motion Control

    Using Slow Shutter Speeds to Eliminate Rain and Snow

    Reciprocal Exposures

    The Reflective Light Meter

    “Normal” and “Non-Normal” Scenes

    Tools for Determining “Proper” Exposures with Tricky Scenes


    The F/16 Sunny Day Rule

    Causes for Complete Rolls of Film with Exposure Errors

    Common Filters

    The Eye Cup Cover


    Chapter 4 Focus, Depth of Field, and Lenses


    Depth of Field



    Chapter 5 Electronic Flash

    Guide Numbers

    Flash Sync Speeds

    Set the Flash for the Film Used (If Still Using a Film Camera)

    Manual Flash Mode

    The Inverse Square Law

    Automatic and Dedicated Flash Exposure Modes

    Built-in Flash Units

    Fill-in Flash

    Oblique Light, Both Flash and Non-Flash (Flashlight)

    Bounce Flash

    Painting with Light


    Chapter 6 Crime Scene Photography

    Photo Documentation Forms

    Overall Photographs

    Midrange Photographs

    Close-Up Photographs

    The Photographic Documentation of Bodies and Wounds


    Chapter 7 Ultraviolet, Infrared, and Fluorescence

    The Electromagnetic Spectrum (EMS)

    Ultraviolet Light (UV)

    Infrared Light (IR) on the Electromagnetic Spectrum

    Visible Light Fluorescence


    Chapter 8 Photogrammetry

    Introduction to Photogrammetry

    Perspective Grid Photogrammetry

    Perspective Disc Photogrammetry

    Natural Grid Photogrammetry

    Reverse Projection Photogrammetry

    Rhino Photogrammetry


    Chapter 9 Special Photography Situations

    Accident Photography

    Surveillance Photography

    Aerial Photography

    Underwater Photography


    Chapter 10 Digital Imaging Technologies

    In the Beginning

    Expose Yourself to Digital Imaging Concepts: Bits, Bytes, Pixels, and Dots

    Take a Picture! It Lasts Longer … Or Does It?

    Image S&M … Storage and Management of Your Digital Images


    Chapter 11 Digital Image Processing of Evidentiary Photography

    Best Practices and Guidelines

    General Guidelines and Requirements

    The Order of Enhancements

    Getting Started

    The Imaging Process (The Act Formerly Known as “Enhancement”)


    Chapter 12 Legal Issues Related to Photographs and Digital Images

    Criteria of Photographs and Digital Images as Evidence

    The Purpose of Crime Scene Photographs

    Photographs of Suspects and Evidence

    Legal Implications of Digital Imaging

    International Association for Identification (IAI) Resolution 97-9

    Case Law Citations Relevant to Film and Digital Images

    Canadian Cases




    Subject Index


advert image