I get it: the point of saying, “It’s not the camera, it’s you,” is to get photographers off lusting over the latest gear, and get them out shooting with the gear they already have. But you know what? Sometimes it is the camera. Consider this photograph.
I took it with my Canon TLb, a 35mm SLR. I used a 50mm f/1.8 lens and Kodak Gold 200 film. I probably shot this at something like f/2 at 1/500 second. The lens lets me focus as close as about one foot.
I made this photo a minute later with my Voigtländer Vito II, a 35mm viewfinder camera, on Kodak Gold 200. It can’t focus closer than about three feet, so I had to stand farther back from my subject compared to the Canon SLR. And its 1/300 second top shutter speed and f/3.5 maximum aperture meant vastly different depth of field.
I know this subject isn’t really that interesting. But the point is: there may be some shots your camera can’t get that some other camera can.
I know that any reasonable SLR will let me move in close and get that creamy background effect. But what interesting work can I do with the Vito II? The camera on my iPhone? An old box camera? Creativity happens within constraints. Pushing a limited tool to its limits is where surprising and outstanding work can happen.
And I might do some of that work were I not having so much fun shooting my SLRs!
Last updated on 19 March 2020 by Jim Grey