|Taken with a Canon SD10 Digital ELPH.|
It is this reliance on luck in photography that has many refusing to accept photographic images as art. This shows a lack of understanding of what many believe constitutes art. There is art and there is craft. Point-and-shoot photographers, especially those with their cameras permanently set to "Auto", are the purest of artists. These shooters keep the intrusion of craft into their art to a minimum.
I've always knows that there was a certain amount of chance involved in getting a fine photo. But it wasn't until my wife bought me a Canon SD10 Digital ELPH that I began to truly appreciate what removing the craft decisions from photography really meant.
The little Canon SD10 fit into the watch pocket of my jeans. It had no zoom lens, it could not be manually focused, nor could one change the f/stops or shutter speeds. On the plus side, it had an f/2.8 prime lens; This isn't fast but it isn't slow either.
|Dinner: opportunity to make/capture art.|
My little SD10 lasted more than seven years and it taught me a lot. When I retired, read hit by a layoff at the newspaper, The London Free Press took "my" cameras. You see, "my" cameras were "their" cameras. I was left with three lenses: a Canon 200mm f/1.8 and two smaller prime lenses. I was also left a little short of money.
I sold my lenses and replaced all my newspaper gear with what I hoped would do the job on a shoestring: a Canon S90, a Fuji HS10 and a Dell Studio XPS notebook. Of course, I also added a big helping of serendipity to my camera bag. These are cameras that thrive on luck.
|Action is good but an overall shot is a must --- must show a surfer and a kite.|
The Canon P90 is a small camera, the expected point-and-shoot shape and size, making it is easy to carry at all times. But, where the P90 shines is when used for available light photography.
It actually has a specific low light setting that changes the way the camera treats the scene and the picture file it creates. First, the S90 has an f/2.0 lens which lets in twice the light of an f/2.8 lens.
|Available light makes this shot work in a way a flash would not.|
In a pinch, the Fuji will also shoot in low light. In fact, it has a trick or two up its menu-sleeve but I still prefer the Canon. In a future post I'll discuss the Fuji solution.
|Without a flash, there's context. Don't you hate a black background in flash pictures.|
|Tweaking the endpoints of the Crazy Horse bust would improve image.|
The two biggest disappoints I have with both the Canon S90 and the Fuji HS10 are:
1. I just don't think either consistently delivers the bright, rich colours that my old Canon SD10 produced. Neither camera has the latitude that I expected. But, if you have Photoshop, or a program like ACDSee, this problem is easily corrected. Also, the Fuji has a DR (dynamic range) setting. This may help solve this problem. We'll see in a future post.
2. Both cameras suffer from shutter lag but in the case of the Fuji it can be exceedingly frustrating. The Fuji promises a shooting speed of ten frames per second and delivers - but that is it. You don't line up shooting bursts, one after another as one does with a highend DSLR. One lives with a blank monitor a lot of the time.
I have taken some action shots with the HS10, the kite-surfing pictures for instance, but I found that I had to choose my moments carefully. Grab a shot and then wait for the image to be processed.
|A fine car, my Morgan took us to California and returned us home.|
I'm going to try and have some of the work from my Morgan trip published and that will be the kicker. How will these images look on a printed page after setting the tonal endpoints and colour values in Photoshop?
My money says that they will look stupendous.
For a very good and very complete look at the Fuji Finepix HS10 check out the review on "imaging resource." The review gives a good overall view of the camera plus some indepth technical stuff. The article is very nicely done.
The same site has a review of the Canon S90. The reviewer writes, ". . . the good news is that the Canon S90 does deliver better performance in low light, and its optical quality is impressive relative to the camera's size." Personally, I found myself more in agreement with the review in the New York Times by David Pogue. If you have the time, read both.
|The compact Canon S90 is always handy and it gives great results in available light.|