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Old Aug 14, 2011, 4:01 PM   #1
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Default Just some thoughts

I saw this and I couldn’t resist posting it here.




We’ve all heard this at one point or another. People who think the camera makes the picture not the artist. It’s irritating, nobody ever ask a painter what kind of paint they use or how much the canvas cost. You never hear “What a great concert, that Van Halen guy was he must have had a Stratocaster”

I was once asked by a man who had seen a couple of my photo illustrations if I would do one for his business. When I gave him a quote (a low one, I don’t do it professionally) He got mad and said “I might as well buy Photoshop and do it myself” What can you say to something like that?

But the assumption that equipment or software is what makes an image is not limited to non photographers. You see it all the time on photo web sites, supposed education videos, blogs, and right here on Steves. Especially when newbie’s ask for help.

We tend to forget that the average hobbyist will never make large prints. That the grandma at little league is not shooting for sports illustrated, and that good photography is not about what equipment you have, but how well you use it.

Look up “Charles M. Conlon: Baseball's master photographer” Here is a guy who took baseball photo’s including action shots with a 4X5 camera. No 9fps burst rate there.

One of my pet peeves is he term “Point & Shoot Camera” . There is no such thing as a Point & Shoot Camera, only Point & Shoot photographers. You can spend five grand on a full frame pro camera put it in “Auto” mode and Point & Shoot. By the same token you can buy a $75 WallMart special and create great photographs. Yes I am aware of the limitations in sensor size, processing speeds, manual controls etc. But that’s the point, being aware of what the camera can or can’t do and using that knowledge to your advantage. You are still in control of composition, lighting (possibly) and even to some extent, exposure settings if you understand what the different modes are doing.

I’m not saying that good or expensive equipment is a bad thing. Believe me you won’t make it two feet in my door without seeing the word “Nikkor”. But you will also see the word “Coolpix” inside my pocket everywhere I go. I often wish I had this or that but I shoot with what I do have to the best of my ability.

The bottom line: the only thing that really maters in photography is the final image. And the only one who has to like it, is you. (Or your client if you’re a pro)

So the next time someone says to you “You must have a fantastic camera” just smile and say “yes I do” And the next time someone ask for your advice try to think in terms of technique not equipment.
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 8:07 PM   #2
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A good one!

Take care, Glen
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 8:24 PM   #3
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Sam Haskins is a good writer... he must have a terrific pen...
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 9:00 PM   #4
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The problem I have with the quote is that every photographer that I know is anxious to get better equipment to improve his work, while maintaining that the equipment has nothing to do with the fine photographs that they take. Maybe it's just me, but I find a bit of tension between those two things...
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 9:06 PM   #5
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The equipment helps to some extent. You're not going to shoot a close up of the pride of lions on the Serengeti with a cell phone camera!
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 9:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tclune View Post
The problem I have with the quote is that every photographer that I know is anxious to get better equipment to improve his work, while maintaining that the equipment has nothing to do with the fine photographs that they take. Maybe it's just me, but I find a bit of tension between those two things...
That's just human nature. We all want new things. And better equipment sometimes makes things easier but not necessarily better.
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Old Aug 16, 2011, 9:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Nichol View Post
The equipment helps to some extent. You're not going to shoot a close up of the pride of lions on the Serengeti with a cell phone camera!
Well you might but your next of kin will have to post them for you.
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Old Aug 17, 2011, 3:46 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjsnaps View Post
Well you might but your next of kin will have to post them for you.
Are there lion resistant cell phone cameras?
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Old Aug 17, 2011, 4:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Nichol View Post
Are there lion resistant cell phone cameras?
There may be, but I'm not volunteering to do the testing.

brian
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