Photography, Cameras and People in General

Started 10 months ago | Discussions thread
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Photography, Cameras and People in General
10 months ago

This will be a bit of a rant and a revelation of my discouragement overall.

Over the past several years I have tried to renew my lagging interest in photography. It had already started to slip in the waning years of film but with the advent of digital photography it fast-tracked into total disinterest. It wasn't until my wife received her first digital camera (an early Kodak DC around 2000) that my interest picked up again... largely to assist her since she was new to  photography. So... after a couple of years I bought us both a couple of Kodak cameras, upgraded them a year later and added yet another Kodak to the mix. We loved our Kodaks for their color, their simplicity and the ease with which they allowed us to enjoy photography. We did NOT love the slowness of the time it took to write to the cards and eventually we jumped ship for our first dslr (Pentax k10d) which lead to a series of lenses (double all of this since I bought the same system for her as for myself). Lin loved the brightness of the viewfinder and so we were off... larger bags to hold everything, accessories... and money down the proverbial drain. I began to hate lugging all of this around and so I looked for something smaller which came in the form of a Panasonic ZS6. We took these with us on our trips since they were lighter to carry. I wasn't thrilled with the results but I was thrilled with the convenience. Last year I decided to upgrade yet again to the RX100... a higher end compact with a larger sensor. She lovers hers. I hate mine. It's just too small... and too complex. I looked into trading it in but the loss was unbearable. So I decided I should learn more about it.

This leads to the main part of this rant - discouragement. The more I read into the manuals I've obtained, the less I like the camera. It's far too complex for me. They've packed everything but the kitchen sink into its menu and its more than I care to bother with when it comes to shooting pictures. Whatever happened to: set the ISO, set the shutter speed, adjust the aperture, compose and fire away? Now there seems to be a myriad of considerations and just trying to set the aperture, shutter speed and ISO in these cameras means digging into menus whereas before it was a simple matter of turning a couple of dials. So off to a couple of "other" dpReview groups I trooped to learn more about these cameras. And what I discovered was many folks arguing about pixels, which camera was the sharpest, should I trade my xwhatever for the FZwhat-have-you? Which glass is the best? How should I pimp the camera? And on and on. Oh... there were some kind folks too but it seemed to me that these forums were more about cameras and less about photography and certainly the "joy" of photography. Then I remembered... the Kodak group has always been about photography, plain and simple. Why is that? Sure you will find images posted in the Sony, Panasonic, Nikon, Fuji groups but you will also find arguments that never seem to infect the Kodak group. Why?

Why have they made these cameras so complex? I'm stuck with trying to bring myself to love this little RX100 but its menu system turns me off and makes me want to just shelve it and forget it... an expensive mistake. I suspect doing so would discourage my wife so I'm forced to fake it if you get my drift. Frankly... I long for the days of my Yashica FX-2. Such a wonderful, mechanical, easy-to-operate slr.

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Happy Snappin'

 JamesD2's gear list:JamesD2's gear list
Kodak EasyShare C663 Kodak DX7590 Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS5 Nikon D90 Nikon D3100
Casio Exilim EX-ZS6 Pentax K10D Sony RX100
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