Tuesday, March 15, 2011

For the Joy of Photography

354/365 - The Chair by Wayne-K
354/365 - The Chair a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.

I love walking around and snapping everyday photos with my Nikon D80 and 35mm f/1.8 lens. The beauty in this set-up is the simplicity. I considered bringing this rig with me to Dallas, Texas on my business trip, but decided on the wife's Canon SD780IS point and shoot camera instead.

The Canon is great because it fits easily into my pocket, creates vivid color photos, and takes decent quality images in good light. It's a really nice point and shoot camera. However, I just don't enjoy shooting it.

I like looking through a viewfinder of a camera when I'm framing an image and not the back of an LCD. When I'm looking through a viewfinder, my eye is focused (no pun intended) on the image in the viewfinder and how it's framed. All I see is the image, framed in black, and with no distractions. When I compose using the LCD, I find my eyes wandering to the buttons on the back of the camera, to movement in my peripheral vision, and to other distractions in my field of view.

I also like to control the camera instead of having it control me. I like fiddling with the aperture and shutter speed adjustment dials on my SLR in manual mode, controlling the look and feel of the captured image. This allows me to control the depth of field, control how motion will be depicted in the image, and determine the best exposure for the mood I'm trying to convey (which may not be what the camera's matrix metering had in mind). I also like focusing the camera where I want it to focus and not fighting with the camera when it decides to focus elsewhere.

I firmly believe great images can be created with any camera, whether it's the most expensive, professional SLR, or the most basic pinhole camera, made by a child. I decided to carry the Canon point and shoot this week to challenge myself and to see what I could produce with an "idiot" camera. It's definitely been a challenge, but I think I was able to create some semi-decent, artistic images.

The challenge with the Canon point and shoot is it's fully automatic nature, offering very little manual control. That's why I'm looking forward to the Nikon FM2, a fully manual camera, offering very little automation. It's a manual focus, manual exposure, film camera. The film is even manually advanced, manually rewound, and the ASA manually set (no DX encoding).

The camera is so simple, the only way to screw up the image is via the photographer! But it will fun. Once the film is loaded, it'll be just me and the camera, with no distracting automation or LCD screen. This will allow me to just go out and create images...for the joy of photography.

353/365 - More Triangles

No comments:

Post a Comment