Friday, 26 October 2012

What Makes a Good Photographer?

I just bought a new camera. What a rigmarole. Some years ago I found that my old Olympus OM1 SLR film camera (long retired and resident in my attic) had become no more than a pretty-looking rear lens cap. I decided that a digital camera was now a must, so I got a nice little Kodak Easyshare thingummy which had a zoom and a flash and could be kept in a pocket or even stolen without much trouble. It took some good pictures (I had little to do with the process apart from pointing it in the right direction.) But there did come a time when I hankered after something more.

The way to buy a camera these days, it seems to me, is to decide how much you want to spend on one, then triple it. It will still not be enough to buy the top camera, but you have to have something forever unobtainable to lust after or else what is the point of living?

Choosing a camera is not easy. Camera companies are rich and powerful and they are not above bribing all sorts of plausible-sounding numbskulls to extol the virtues of their particular product. There's a thriving industry of persuasion out there. The first task of these "independent reviewers" is to convince you that if you don't have the latest must-have item, then you personally are a totally worthless piece of garbage with no redeeming human features.

This approach I have met before.

Have no fear, noble readers, I am solidly armored against these tactics. I know what I am and I know what I want. Therefore I approach the matter thus:

1) What sort of camera do top snapppers use?
2) Get one like that.
3) If it is too expensive (it will be) get the next one down. (Keep applying rules 2 and 3 until you've got yourself a camera.)

Lastly, beware the imbeciles who continually trot out the mantra that "an expensive camera won't make you a good photographer." Ha! This is patent rubbish. Of course an expensive camera will make you a good photographer: that's what you're paying all that damned money for! And as proof, let me offer this insight: you don't catch professional photographers using the sort of camera I used to rely on.

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