Flowers from the French Market
Have you ever been told that you have really nice photographic images, followed by the dreaded comment “you must have a really nice camera?” Or worse yet, admired another photographer’s work and thought “if I only had a nice camera like he/she must have.” Perhaps you have admired those photographers whose websites list all the camera gear that they used in a particular photo shoot, or maybe there was some envy involved, or just a feeling of being turned off. Those are just a few examples of why camera gear really isn’t all that important. Some of the greatest images have been made with a home-made pinhole camera, or a smart phone, or without a camera or lens of any sort at all.
There is so much more to creating great images than spinning a few dials and clicking the shutter button. So why IS camera gear important? To illustrate, let me say that my own camera collection includes both film and digital cameras, point-and-shoots, and SLRs. Some of them spend most of the time in the drawer or closet, and others are with me or close at hand all the time. I seem to have compartmentalized what cameras I use for which purposes. This blog-post deals with the informal, every-day snapshots and the camera gear I use most often for those. Later on, I will continue this thread with my “big” cameras.
My iPhone (which has 2 cameras), and point-and-shoot are always with me - either in a pocket, purse, or on my belt. These are my “walking around” cameras, my security blanket in case I see something great that I need/want to capture.
Their main advantage is small size and unobtrusiveness. The images are mostly documentary - I was at a Lions Club meeting or American Legion event, or with a friend or family member, or in the forest preserve walking the dogs. You get the idea.
The relatively small image size and file type (jpeg) are suitable for sharing on social media and via e-mail, as well as useful for creating collage-type display boards. They are great publicity for the Lions Clubs, and appear frequently in Club, District, and State newsletters and magazines. The iPhone photos are particularly well-suited for sharing on the Roselle Lions Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/RoselleLionsClub and website http://www.e-clubhouse.org/sites/roselle/index.php.
So, my everyday camera gear is light-weight, easy to carry around, and most suitable for snapshots of everyday life. Digital technology for the point-and-shoots and smart-camera phones has come a long way since they first appeared on the scene. They are not my only camera gear, but they are a very important part of my life as a photographer.