New Photography Book Focuses on Deeper Meaning of Historic Photos

Dean and Tammy Shaffer explore the metaphors found in fine art photography in their new book, released by Dog Ear Publishing. It has earned the company’s Award of Literary Excellence.

Cleveland, OH, October 31, 2019 --( There’s a reason the adage “A picture is worth a thousand words” rings true. One of the things that capitalizes on that phrase is a photograph, especially an image meant to convey more than just what has been snapped in the moment. A new book, released by Dog Ear Publishing, introduces a new way to study fine art photographs, delving into the symbols found within.

“Metaphor: The Universal Language of Photography – A Search for Meaning” explores how some photographers use elements inherent in photography to share their vision, opening the door for viewers to better understand the metaphors and meaning in the images. Although one can enjoy the simple aesthetic every photograph carries, delving into the deeper meaning behind its composition, subject matter and lighting can bring a greater understanding of its themes and overarching message.

The photographs chosen for the book showcase a variety of different aspects of life, capturing a moment on film that cannot always be captured by the spoken or written word. Chapters focus on such topics as elements of composition, perspective, how photography differs from other art forms and empathy, aka the language of faces.

The authors, who have long been interested in the medium, break down fine art photographs from artists around the world, sharing how pattern and line can provide messages all their own. Their insights make the world of fine art photography more accessible to those who want to gain a glimpse into the minds of those who created the unforgettable images.

In the introduction, the authors write that the book “introduces a way to look at fine art photographs by recognizing their inherent symbolic content in order to connect with a greater idea that lies behind each one,” inspiring those who look at fine art photographs to “look at the world around them in a different way.” Their book does just that.

Dean Shaffer, now retired, taught art and photography for 23 years. The practicing artist studied fine art photographers and their approach to the medium.

Tammy Shaffer, a medical science researcher, has been interested in photography and philosophy all her life. She provided insight and experience on current scientific thought related to the biological nature that serves as the underpinnings of visual communication.

For additional information, please visit

Metaphor: The Universal Language of Photography – A Search for Meaning
Dean Shaffer and Tammy Stefan Shaffer
Dog Ear Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-4575-7006-3 154 pages $22.95 US

Available at Ingram,, Barnes & Noble and fine bookstores everywhere.

Dog Ear Publishing partners with authors to shape content that resonates with readers as diverse as the books we publish. Our mission is to leverage expertise, technology and relationships to form a meaningful and lasting bond between creators, content and culture as a whole. Dog Ear Publishing is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, and can be contacted by phone at (317) 228-3656 or through
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