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03/15/2004 04:20:21 AM · #1
You know... Size doesn't matter...

One of my favorite photographers I know did a gallery show with me, and all of his shots were done with a homeade camera. Electrical tape and cardboard. All the silly yuppy jerks were sitting around the show talking about the depth, composition and crap they really didn't undersatand but thought was part of the culture... Anyhow. I would go up to them and talk technical talk. They thought this guy was using the highest end equipment and spent thousands of dollars to make those shots.

What I am here to say is don't sweat the equipment. Focus on the ideas and vision.

I just spent a bundle on an EOS 10D so I am a hypocrite I guess. BUT those of you that are discouraged with the amateur market that you can afford. Don't worry. Some of my favorite shots came from that market.

I am fortunate that I have an endless supply of engaging models willing to pose for free.

The other night I worked with a friend of mine and get this, my crappy little Pentax Optio 330gs. Oh. And 2 100 watt lightbulbs and a flourescent lamp. Basically a setup that anyone could simulate for under $300. Check it out. Not high end pro work, but still some good sh**.

' . substr('//stevelenzphotography.com/proofs/andrea/images/andrea1%20092.jpg', strrpos('//stevelenzphotography.com/proofs/andrea/images/andrea1%20092.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

The rest of the shoot...Rest of the shoot

Again, this was all done with very amatuer equipment. More to come...

Message edited by author 2004-03-15 04:21:09.
03/15/2004 05:09:35 AM · #2
Originally posted by stevelenz:

Again, this was all done with very amatuer equipment. More to come...

Yes shows :)

Nice candid shots
03/15/2004 05:19:01 AM · #3
hmm....

hard to tell if that is a compliment or not...

so not sure if I am saying thanks or not.
03/15/2004 05:26:49 AM · #4
hmmm....

hard to tell if you are complaining or not

so not apologising :)

I just mean't what I said - while it does show that the pictures were taken without the help of sophisticated studio lighting they are none the less nice pictures. If there is one thing that I would have avoided was double shadows.

BTW my lighting equipment is worse, consisting of readling lamps and likes and my camera till very recently was a 1MP Casio...


03/15/2004 05:33:41 AM · #5
Knowing me I am complaining.

I get what you meant now.

I would also have liked to have a third light behind her seperating her from the background. She looks a little too flat there.

Anyhow. I looked through Tarique's work and it is very good. I especially liked your macro work.

Thanks for the feedback!

03/15/2004 05:36:56 AM · #6
Welcome to DPC, Steve. Not sure if the shot above is my favourite. You've got some very nice stuff in the gallery. It's difficult for me to appreciate the lighting (badly calibrated work monitor), but you seem to have done a great job.

Ironic surname, considering your profession, btw. :-)
03/15/2004 05:46:49 AM · #7


Message edited by author 2004-05-04 04:36:41.
03/15/2004 05:59:28 AM · #8
Originally posted by xvalensx:

... most non-professionals should abandon the frame of mind where the camera with the most features (or the most expensive one) provides the best image quality.

I get the impression you're talking cross-purposes here.. If you're talking aesthetics, then clearly camera doesn't matter. If you're talking "image quality" in a technical manner, then the glass and sensor used make a fair difference. Whether non-pros appreciate the extra quality, very much depends on the person. :-)
03/15/2004 06:49:10 AM · #9
remember your talking about an image for the web here - print that out and then you will see what's what.

03/15/2004 08:14:40 AM · #10
Steve...You're right, to hell with the latest technology...just tell me where you get the unlimited supply of beautiful models for free!
03/15/2004 09:19:10 AM · #11
The only trick is to learn how to work within the limitations of your particular equipment choices - then you can make great pictures with anything, from a cereal box with a hole punched in the end to a canon 1D Mk II.

If you don't know the limitations then you are going to waste a lot of time and end up frustrated.

More expensive gear, other than being more expensive, typically allows you to work with more extreme conditions or more stringent requirements and still have an expectation to make the shot, that's all.

My optio S4 does remarkably well, but only under certain conditions and with some careful handling.

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/196/thumb/63142.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/196/thumb/63142.jpg', '/') + 1) . '
' . substr('//www.pbase.com/image/24810031/small.jpg', strrpos('//www.pbase.com/image/24810031/small.jpg', '/') + 1) . '' . substr('//www.pbase.com/image/24810028/small.jpg', strrpos('//www.pbase.com/image/24810028/small.jpg', '/') + 1) . '' . substr('//www.pbase.com/image/23786707/small.jpg', strrpos('//www.pbase.com/image/23786707/small.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

Most of these represent the limits of what that particular fully auto, point and shoot, pack of card sized camera can do.
03/15/2004 09:34:51 AM · #12
I dont believe that what camer we use, I am not great Photographer but i use canaon a40 for my work and i havev got good response for my work and my work has really benefited .
03/15/2004 03:06:42 PM · #13
Originally posted by PaulMdx:

I get the impression you're talking cross-purposes here.. If you're talking aesthetics, then clearly camera doesn't matter. If you're talking "image quality" in a technical manner, then the glass and sensor used make a fair difference. Whether non-pros appreciate the extra quality, very much depends on the person. :-)


Yes. Strictly aesthetics. I would never show up to a professional shoot with my 330gs. That's why I bought the 10D. I guess I should refine my statement by saying that whatever camera you own is good enough to be creative and enjoy photography. When I started out I thought I had to have the latest pro equipment to take good shots. Since I couldn't afford it, I felt limited even though I really wasn't.
03/15/2004 03:55:05 PM · #14
Of course it matters what camera you use. It matters depending on what you are trying to accomplish with the camera. All of the examples discussed here are still shots and I will agree that many still shots from most cameras can look quite good when shown at a small size. However, still shots are just one aspect of photography and small viewing sizes are just one application. The camera matters a great deal when you are shooting fast action for a publication, when you are shooting glamour shots for print advertising, when you need a particular perspective that only specific lenses can provide, or when you are shooting highly detailed landscapes that will be enlarged to posters sizes. For ordinary, less complicated shots that will never be enlarged beyond 4x6 or 8x10 most of the current P&S cameras can be used to good effect but let's not kid ourselves into thinking those cameras will be worthy of all shooting scenarios.

Now having said all that, it is still a good reminder to consider what you need your camera for and how you like to shoot. For instance, I really want to get a Digital Rebel or similar camera because of the interchangeable lenses and minimal image noise that allow for a greater range of shooting situations. But I also really like not dealing with multiple lenses as that can be awkward and time consumming. I prefer to travel light and I often shoot from the hip, so to speak. So I am looking at and drooling over all these new and fancy cameras and for some very legitimate reasons but also just because I want them. The reality of it all is that for 90 percent of my shooting needs and style my current camera, Sony F707 still serves me very well. I have to keep that in perspective before I plop down 1000 to 1500 dollars on something fancier.

Yesterday I went out with a friend on his sailboat along with another one of his friends. This other guy upon seeing my camera tried telling me about his new digital camera. He asked me about RAW files but he couldn't remember what he bought other than it was a Minolta. He went and got it and I was guessing that it was an A1 and I was right. He than asked me to look it over and make sure he had all of settings right so they were set to auto everything and that he was not screwing anything up, yet he had also purchesed a 2gb flash card so he could shoot RAW files, whatever they were. He was certain that the camera could use interchangeable lenses and I had to lower his excitement by telling him it was a fixed lens design and explain what that meant. Basically I had to tell him all about his own camera that he just spent over 1400 dollars on, including flash card, and a camera that would only be used in full Auto mode. I thought it was sad and amusing at the same time.

T

Message edited by author 2004-03-15 15:58:07.
03/15/2004 04:00:26 PM · #15
Tim, teach me to draw as well as you do and i'll give u all my camera equipment.
03/15/2004 04:03:19 PM · #16
Thank you John, and it's a deal. That reminds me, why am I sitting here when I have work to do? :-)

T
03/15/2004 04:07:27 PM · #17
Originally posted by timj351:

...I often shoot from the hip, so to speak. So I am looking at and drooling over all these new and fancy cameras and for some very legitimate reasons but also just because I want them. The reality of it all is that for 90 percent of my shooting needs and style my current camera, Sony F707 still serves me very well. I have to keep that in perspective before I plop down 1000 to 1500 dollars on something fancier.

That's about my situation with a lower baseline of equipment (and talent) ...
03/15/2004 05:51:07 PM · #18
Doesn't matter what camera you use....

Yes - Pictures look sharp and crisp, might have bad composition, but pretty none the less.If you don't know what makes a picture good then an awesome camera wouldn't help.

No - If you have an eye on composition and all the things that make a picture interesting. With these skills you can probably make a lousy camera produce a decent shot.

It starts with the person behind the camera. Of course some people know the concepts to make a great photo and can teach others how to take them, doesn't mean they can do it. Like a lot of coaches ;)

Edit: Hand a newbie a super camera and see what happens. Good or bad digital photography is so easy to get into, cheap or expensive camera.

Message edited by author 2004-03-15 17:57:10.
03/15/2004 06:05:31 PM · #19
I was a musician in a former life, and now I am embarking on photography as a serious hobby/profession, and the one thing I can tell you is that starving your resources is the best way to get creative results, and to develop your own style. By this I mean, purposely stay away from expensive equipment, so that you don't become reliant on it. I can't tell you how many albums I've loved over the years that have been recorded with a 300 dollar 4-track rather than spending hundreds of thousands in the studio. Photographically speaking, most recently, I've fallen in love with the work of Terry Richardson (see quote below)

"New York-based photographer Terry Richardson is unconventional at best -while most photographers will show up at a shoot with a horde of assistants wielding pricey equipment, Richardson will show up with a couple of instant cameras and nothing else. Yet, his informal, verite style and sexually provocative aesthetic has captured the attention of the fashion world and has made him one of the most in demand photographers today."

Just a word of caution, if anybody looks up Terry Richardson to see his work, be prepared to see some provacative work that may be offensive to some people. But, for those of you serious about the art of photography, I believe it to be in the best interest of everyone to expose themselves to as many artists as possible. However, I'm purposefully not including a link here to avoid trouble or controversy.
03/15/2004 06:13:47 PM · #20
Originally posted by jmsetzler:

Tim, teach me to draw as well as you do and i'll give u all my camera equipment.


It's all those expensive, rare earth composite ceramic leads and exotic hardwood pencils he uses.
03/15/2004 06:19:47 PM · #21
There is some merit to this I think... Back when I was shooting with my Fuji 602 I feel that I had a better feel for my shots. Nowdays I feel too bogged down by which lens to use, and all the other decissions and feel I've lost some of my creative look at things. I don't want to get rid of my D100, but maybe I should choose to shoot with just my 50mm lens for a week and see how it goes.

Originally posted by matiscro:

I was a musician in a former life, and now I am embarking on photography as a serious hobby/profession, and the one thing I can tell you is that starving your resources is the best way to get creative results, and to develop your own style. By this I mean, purposely stay away from expensive equipment, so that you don't become reliant on it. I can't tell you how many albums I've loved over the years that have been recorded with a 300 dollar 4-track rather than spending hundreds of thousands in the studio. Photographically speaking, most recently, I've fallen in love with the work of Terry Richardson (see quote below)

"New York-based photographer Terry Richardson is unconventional at best -while most photographers will show up at a shoot with a horde of assistants wielding pricey equipment, Richardson will show up with a couple of instant cameras and nothing else. Yet, his informal, verite style and sexually provocative aesthetic has captured the attention of the fashion world and has made him one of the most in demand photographers today."

Just a word of caution, if anybody looks up Terry Richardson to see his work, be prepared to see some provacative work that may be offensive to some people. But, for those of you serious about the art of photography, I believe it to be in the best interest of everyone to expose themselves to as many artists as possible. However, I'm purposefully not including a link here to avoid trouble or controversy.

03/16/2004 12:43:59 AM · #22
Originally posted by faidoi:

Doesn't matter what camera you use....

Yes - Pictures look sharp and crisp, might have bad composition, but pretty none the less.If you don't know what makes a picture good then an awesome camera wouldn't help.

No - If you have an eye on composition and all the things that make a picture interesting. With these skills you can probably make a lousy camera produce a decent shot.


I'm not sure I follow this dialogue. Is this third person or directed towards my specific shots?
03/16/2004 01:22:59 AM · #23
Originally posted by stevelenz:

Originally posted by faidoi:

Doesn't matter what camera you use....

Yes - Pictures look sharp and crisp, might have bad composition, but pretty none the less.If you don't know what makes a picture good then an awesome camera wouldn't help.

No - If you have an eye on composition and all the things that make a picture interesting. With these skills you can probably make a lousy camera produce a decent shot.


I'm not sure I follow this dialogue. Is this third person or directed towards my specific shots?


No, just my observation on the statement "Doesn't matter what camera you use".

Message edited by author 2004-03-16 01:26:34.
03/16/2004 01:23:17 AM · #24
Not you personally but anyone in general. A gifted photographer can do wonders with some pretty simple equipment and on the other hand an amateur with fancy equipment can usually produce clean and sharp images but with little impact and photograhic appeal. My advice is to get the best camera that you can afford and then forget about what the camera is and just learn how to shoot with it and get the most out of what the camera can do well.

T
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