The web doesn’t need another photography site. Yet here I go. I’m not a professional. And I doubtless have anything glorious to write about concerning cameras, lenses and all the various paraphernalia that is required to get the shot or video.
I’ve owned a Pentax K1000 handed down to me from my dad who similarly had little interest in photography. I too used it very little. Digital photography seemed cool so I bought a Kodak DC4800 point and shoot back when my second daughter was born. We shot tons of photos with it though I never once learned anything about photography. I upgraded a few years later with an original Rebel Digital. I upgraded that to a Canon T1i. Neither of these early entry digital Canon shooters were more than a fancy point and shoot in my hands. A few years later I bought a used T4i from a pro. It was then I actually tried to have fun and understand photography.
I started learning that I was pretty decent at composing photos when I tried. And try I did. I took the camera on numerous trips to the Georgia Mountains, Disneyworld, Bolivia, South Carolina coast and many other places trying to figure out how to get a nice shot in good light.
I enjoy Lightroom post processing. I learned to always shoot in RAW.
I don’t always get the shutter speed, aperture or ISO correct. Sometimes I just twist the dial to P and have at it.
One of my best times shooting was screwing a ND filter 10-stop on my Canon 17-85mm and shooting the waves crashing against the breakers on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Had no idea what I was doing but I figured something out and a few of those photos turned out real good, particularly as the sun was setting.
I don’t have the best lenses. My best lens is the ever present Canon 50mm f/1.4 I bought used. I had no idea, at the time, why I was buying it but buy it I did and despite always wishing the angle was wider, it takes stellar photos. I’m happy walking around, up and back, to get the shot I want.
I don’t pixel peep. The people I show my photos to don’t care if the photo is not magazine quality. Nobody has ever commented about bokeh or lack thereof. I can only surmise they are looking at the story I am trying show in my photos and not the technical aspects. The only thing I ever really try to incorporate into my photos is the rule of thirds. I will never be a pro. But I have taken a good many shots that I like and some people have enjoyed seeing.
My interest in video sort of expanded and I realized I was being hampered somewhat by my T4i. It was capable but it was far better at taking photos than recording video.
I’m always reading reviews and looking at the next models and such that come out but I’m just not one to spend a ton of money on incremental changes. However, the Panasonic G7 went on heavy discounted sale during Christmas of ’16. $450 is a very nice price for a camera that was judged extremely capable a year prior and was now getting pushed aside by newer models.
The big question was if I was ready to put aside the Canon ecosystem for another. I was and did. It wasn’t like I had a ton of lenses and bodies that I would miss. I promptly got the G7 and bought a 25mm lens and haven’t looked back.
Some might argue that the T4i to G7 is a lateral move. Maybe. What I do know is that the photo quality looks the same and the video option is far, far better for what I want to do with it. Plus I got nifty wi-fi control and can do timelapse in camera without having to download the photos in Photoshop. Frankly the IQ of the G7 is far better than T4i.
Oh and the G7 has 4K. I haven’t really taken advantage of this feature yet but I like that it’s there when I’m ready. The file size is ridiculous and video rendering takes forever so I’m fairly happy just doing 1080P or downsizing the 4K to 1080P when the mood strikes.
I’ll keep my T4i simply because I have a couple of lenses I like and don’t feel like repurchasing them for the micro 4/3 system.
Interestingly, I use my Lumix LX7 a lot. It’s small and less intrusive. I love that camera. The video and photo quality is quite lovely in a compact camera. Yes there are other cameras that have been released from Canon and Sony, even a new models from Panasonic that have more capability, I guess, but again it’s incremental. Nobody normal, that just looks at my photos on Flickr are going to know what kind of camera I used unless they check the meta data or I tell them.
So that is me and my gear. I promise you I will not be buying a new piece of gear for a vlog or to review. I mean I subscribe to numerous, many fantastic photog YouTube channels and they are constantly reviewing new equipment. Every month something better comes out and they seemingly have endless funds to chase it.
I can see me buying a new lens or two for my G7 (wide-angle and useable low light zoom) but unless something breaks this will be my creative gear for a while. Maybe in a couple years when the Lumix G85, which was released a few months ago, comes down to $450 I will snap it up. I mean, folks love it today. In two years there will still be nothing wrong with it…except a newer model with incremental expensive changes that I can do without. I am happy to be a few steps behind the technology herd.
Why should you read this blog?
I’m a normal guy with the universal interest in photography. Everybody is a photographer. On top of that, there are tons, absolute TONS, of talented shutter pushers who are plying their trade for Instagram glory, YouTube fame, online tutorial riches and professional satisfaction.
I have no such ambitions.