Just curiosity! How many professionals on this forum have switched to m4:3..

Started 6 months ago | Discussions thread
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Re: Still not setting the bar high enough
In reply to Jacques Cornell, 5 months ago

Much interesting discussion. Some folks obviously are still living in the digital stone age, chasing after full frames and maximum resolution like is was the holy grail when,  in fact, most of the targets and markets for work have changed profoundly. The ascendent advertising medium is the web and it's always growing.

When we shot print with Kodak DCS 760s our clients didn't think, "Oh well, I guess it will be good enough until cameras with 36 megapixels come along...." They mostly were wowed by the performance of the cameras and found them to be able to produce stunning printed material, if the photographer understood the (non-quantifiable) aesthetics required to make images that motivated people. Moved them emotionally, not mathematically...

Numbers people seem blind to the value of the creative content and mistake the wrapper for the product. They are so busy trying to quantify how to do something or what its value is that they forget the "why" and the "joy" of doing something. The business is not about making technically perfect photographs it really is about making photographs that are able to elicit emotional responses. Photographs don't need to be critically sharp to do that. They don't need to be perfectly exposed. But they do need someone with a creative mind to bring them into the world. If image making was just an analytical science we'd just have pre-programmed robot cameras do the work.

I posted the original question because last year I was shooting with two different 24 megapixel cameras, full frame cameras. We started doing more and more video. I compared the video from the Sony a99 with the video from a much smaller and less expensive Panasonic GH3. The GH3 stomped all over the bigger and more expensive camera in video production. Just no comparison. So I thought I'd put together a little system with two GH3's and some good lenses for video and run with two systems: one for video (Panasonic m4:3) and one for stills (Sony a99's). But interestingly when I started comparing the things I was shooting stills of with the smaller cameras versus the larger cameras I found that in nearly every situation the quality of both types of cameras far surpassed the quality parameters of the jobs that I was shooting for clients and that the Panasonic's were a lot  more fun to shoot with. And far less expensive to buy.

My original plan to keep both systems seemed silly at that point. I dumped all the big stuff for the smaller stuff. And, even though I am an older photographer I have noticed that the trend in the U.S. is starting to be away from owning more expensive specialty gear and toward renting outlier gear for special need situations.

If I needed to do a print that had to be the size of a wall I would rent a Leica S2 or a Phase One, shoot it for the job, bill the rental to the job (as my accountant always counsels me to do...) and then return the rental unit and not shoulder the enormous cost of ownership with along with the opportunity loss from having spent the money on a specialty tool that is rarely needed.

That would allow me to invest my extra money (as my accountant counsels me to) and do it in a tax advantaged account (as my very professional CPA/accountant counsels me to do). That would allow me to continue to build real wealth instead of just getting (ever depreciating) bragging rights for my gear.

While a full frame camera was a very useful thing five years ago technology and markets change and it's entirely possible that having a state of the art video production tool that is also more than good enough for virtually all still work is a much smarter tool selection at a much lower cost for much greater returns from a more diverse basket of potential clients. Imagine using business strategies in photography! Who would have thought about it.

The fun thing about businesses that revolve around art is that there are no "right" answers for many aspects  and everyone gets to make their own choices. Even those who insist on overlaying meaningless rules or rules of thumb from a decade ago.

Finally, to the non-pro who insists that clients want their artists to always use the best and most modern tools I would love to hear about his adventures shooting with his Phase One 180 and his job delivery in his Bentley Mulsanne business vehicle. How could state of the art imaging be delivered in anything less? I wonder if the magnetic sign on the doors for the business ruins the beautifully designed lines of the chassis...?

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Austin based advertising and portrait photographer, and author of the book series, Minimalist Lighting, and the books: Commercial Photographers Handbook, Photographic Lighting Equipment, and, LED Lighting for Digital Photographers. Also the author of a photo novel called, The Lisbon Portfolio www.kirktuck.com

 Kirk Tuck's gear list:Kirk Tuck's gear list
Nikon D2Xs Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Nikon D7100 Samsung Galaxy NX +2 more
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