Sunday, October 23, 2016

Better cameras do take better pictures

Shot with an aging Canon PowerShot S90.
When I started this blog, I hoped to encourage readers stumbling upon my blog to take more pictures. I tried to spread excitement with photography and to make people understand that their point and shoot cameras did not doom them to shooting poor images.

Gradually, I have had to admit that you can take good pictures with inexpensive equipment but it does limit both your creativity and the quality of your images.

In other words, if you can afford a digital SLR camera with a few interchangeable lenses, go for it. Bite the bullet and buy the stuff. And read the instruction book that comes with the camera. it will be filled with good suggestions. The camera maker wants you to be successful. If you are, you will buy more equipment.

I like my image of my 3-year-old granddaughter reacting to her winning of a computer game. It was a bit tough for the little girl as she was using an old notebook computer and not an iPad. She had to coordinate the use of a touch pad with the simultaneous pressing of a mouse below the pad.

Shot with an old Fuji FinePix HS10.
A faster shutter speed would have been wonderful. My camera couldn't manage it. If I had had an aperture setting of f/1.4 available, I'd have had a sharper image. The f/stops control the amount of light entering a camera through the lens. Most point and shoot do not let in all that much light. That's why these cameras are always pumping out bursts of light from their on board electronic flashes. The quick, short flashes freeze the action but they do so by using a truly ugly light.

When I shot the images of my 7-year-old granddaughter moving up to the orange belt level at her karate class, I was forced to shoot moments that did not contain a lot of action. The actual testing offered a lot of opportunities for capturing some fine images but my camera failed to nail even one. The action unfolded simply far too fast.

My advice. If you can't afford a great camera, don't sweat it. But if you can, move up to something better, do it. Before buying, read a good photography book. Your local library is a good source.

Another shot from an old Fuji FinePix HS10. Background blurred in Photoshop.