Then Compose A Good Photograph
Moon haze on a clear night. Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON
There's a simple secret to photography. Be instinctive. And be happy with the camera you have. Just as you don't need a $10,000 computer to write great prose, you don't need a $10,000 camera to take great pictures. Yes, we all want a 300 mm lens or a great macro lens or the latest bells-and-whistles digital SLR. But the key to photography is to enjoy using what you have.
So you can imagine how much I enjoyed the feedback to my Photo Hunt post The Long And Blinding Road.
Carver said: "I sometimes wish I had a serious digital camera but I feel like I can't justify it until I learn how to do everything it will do. I had a much better 35 mm with several lenses but when I switched over to digital photography, I've made do with an affordable one. I can add lenses if I get a converter but that will get into a lot more money and I don't feel like I can justify it until I develop more skill. I get decent macro shots but need more work with the landscape ones."
David said: "I totally agree with you about the camera - the most important thing is not the camera, but the time. Keep a camera - any camera - with you at all times, and you should be able to capture some good moments that are far better than any set up shots."
Willard, who used to work for the Pennsylvania Game Commission and uses an "old" Canon 10D with several telephoto lenses, said: "You are right with your comments about the cameras. It is amazing what can be done with low to mid range equipment if it is shot correctly."
Les Becker said: "I have to agree with you about taking pictures with just about any camera, David. The one I'm using now was considered mid-range in retail outlets for amateur photographers when I bought it, but it's a pitiful specimen compared to most affordable cameras. Still, I have managed to get some really great photos out of it. The one I had before (the HP PhotoSmart R607) doesn't even come close to this one, and yet with that little thing, I took photos that I'm very, very proud of. Had I not drowned it in coffee, I would still very happily be using it. Proof positive that there is no such thing as a camera that's not good enough".
Blossom Cottage, who has just posted memories of her recent South Africa trip, said: "I use a Canon EOS300 and a 350D love both of them, but I still like my old film SLRs for black and white."
Kate Isis said: "I'm fortunate enough to have a photographer friend who hands me down his old cameras as he updates. But I started with a small compact camera and learnt to take my time and see the world through the lens and I eventually started producing some decent shots. I think no matter what camera your working with, once you get the hang of composition you could take shots on a Box Brownie and come out with good results."
And finally, Epijunky said: "I was green with envy while checking out a camera I couldn't afford (a good ten years back) when the camera's owner told me these words which stuck with me to this day: It's not the camera or the lenses, it's what's six inches behind them."