OK first, here’s a photo.
The photo has nothing to do with the subject of the post, but I like it and I thought we should have at least one photo today. I made this one a while ago and went back yesterday to re-process it with some new SW. I was able to bring out more highlight detail as well as adjust the brightness / curves and saturation.
Now for the main section of the post. I promise that this isn’t a rant, although it might sound like it. Also, it isn’t a normal Central Florida Photo Ops post – but there are a few photo related things I need help with. I admit, I just don’t get them. Do you get them? Can you help me?
- I don’t know if you’re a Flickr member or not. If you take a look at Flickr Explore, you’ll notice that there’s a surprising (at least to me) number of doll or toy photos there each day. To each his or her own, but I just don’t get this. I don’t really see why these are interesting to everyone. What is artistic or appealing about photos of toy dolls? How do these get on Flickr Explore? What am I missing? (Note: Flickr revised their Explore algorithm in 2020 and it’s much better now!)
- The Lensbaby: OK, I’ve never used one, but why would I? It’s an inexpensive, imprecise tilt lens, with not so good optics. You can sort of cause an area within the frame to be in focus while blurring the rest. Is it just fun to play around with? Why would you put this on an expensive DSLR? Can you really do something artistic and controlled with it? Can anyone point me to an outstanding photo made with a Lensbaby? If so, was the Lensbaby critical to the photo or could you make it another way (Gaussian filters anyone)?
- Micro 4/3 cameras: Yes, they have interchangeable lenses and larger sensors (=better image quality) than point and shoot cameras. And a 4/3 kit is smaller and lighter than a DSLR kit. But … Is it your only camera or a secondary / backup / travel camera? If it’s a secondary camera, you have to buy a whole new kit (body, lenses, flash?). That’s pretty expensive. If you want small and light, why not go for smallest and lightest (e.g. a point and shoot) for a lot less money. If you want quality why not go for quality (e.g. your DSLR). Will you be happy with a compromise? —– 9/2/11 Update: I think I do get this now. These cameras are much smaller and lighter. The lenses are less expensive than corresponding DSLR lenses. And they can be used (with reasonably long lenses) in places that don’t allow DSLR photography – like most theaters, some sports arenas, etc. Since they are less conspicuous, many people prefer to use them instead of DSLRs for street photography. And finally, although micro 4/3 sensor quality lags a generation or more behind the best APS C size sensors, it is enormously better than compact point and shoot sensors and good enough for most applications.
- Not posting EXIF data with images: Some people go to great lengths to make sure the EXIF data captured by their camera gets filtered out before they post the photo. Why? How does it hurt to have someone on-line look at this data and try to understand how the photo was made?
- Paying all those $ for a DSLR kit and not using it: You’ve got to have it with you, know how to use it, and use it. If you don’t know how to use it, use it anyway, make mistakes, and learn from them.
- Paying all those $ for a DSLR kit and using it like a phone camera: Don’t leave it on “A”. Learn what all those other modes are and use them. Take charge – don’t let the camera think for you.
- Not post processing: Some of my friends have expensive DSLR cameras and they live with the .jpg output of their cameras. I’ve tried to explain the benefits of RAW capture and post processing, but they don’t want to listen. I just don’t get this.
- All right, no one gets this: Flash in the stands at sporting events and concerts: But why do you still see this? How can anyone do this without dying of embarrassment?
- Film: Film is fun, but for most serious photographers, digital is so much better. OK, maybe I do get the 8×10 view camera people, but still It’s a lot of extra work and many compromises for an improvement in a few small areas.
- Comment Spam on photo blogs (OK, any blog): I think the intent of comment spam is to get links back to their oh so relevant pages. Really? How are children’s shoes related to Central Florida Photo Ops? And that’s a G-rated one. There are many that are R-rated or worse. Why would I allow these comments through on my site? Does anyone? I really don’t get this.
If you “get” any of these things, or would just like to leave a comment to tell me how crazy I am, feel free (although I do moderate comments because of #10).
In the mean time, thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!
©2011, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.