Beginners and others... something to always consider when GAS strikes...

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by DHart, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    We often observe those who are new to photography, and many who are not so new to it, ask... upon seeing a stunning image that was created, "what camera (or lens) did you use for that?" Often assuming that by using a particular camera or lens, such a stunning image was made possible.

    While the characteristics of the lens, in particular, can contribute much to the particular "look" of an image, the camera itself usually, MUCH less so. In fact for most images, the camera itself (perhaps with a few exceptions) is almost meaningless.

    For portraits, in particular, many think that to make a great portrait, a particular focal length or specification of lens in key to this. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

    Great portraits are the result of eliciting a great, natural looking expression from the subject. Beyond that, the photographer's choice of setting, background, where to place the subject, where to place the camera, time of day (if outdoors) how to light the image (or how to use/modify available light), the subject's position/pose, what the subject is wearing, what the subject is doing, and foremost, again... the subject's expression have FAR more to do with the success of the image than what lens was used, MUCH less what camera was used.

    For the beginning or intermediate portraitist... if you give as much (better, MUCH more) time and attention to all the factors I mentioned above as you might give to deciding what lens to buy for portraits, you will be miles ahead. A skilled portraitist can create an incredible, stunning portrait with almost any lens you might think of. It is all in how the portrait is conceived and carried out. Granted, the lens is part of the equation, in terms of creating a particular "look", but there are a great many, very different "looks" that can make a stunning portrait, aided by a wide variety of focal lengths, apertures, and lens types.

    We all love gear and enjoy what it can do, but what it really comes down to, folks, is NOT gear... it's what YOU do! The most incredible images that one can observe have very little to do with the gear. It's almost entirely about what the photographer did to make it all come together.

    Remember this when someone who is impressed with a particular image asks "What camera do you use?" Or "What lens do you use?"

    At a dinner party, following an incredible dish that was served, a guest turns to the host and asks... "what an amazing dish that was, incredibly delicious... what kind of stove do you use???"
     
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  2. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    But, but, but...
     
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  3. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    I know, I know, I know... :eek: :wink:

    Now... back to our regularly scheduled gear fest!
     
  4. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    But, I still have items in my B&H wish list!

    Geez, I thought all I had to do was point, shoot and the select the right art filter? Aren't those filters there to make any shot professional quality? :confused:
     
  5. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    Yes David! You've got it right. Standards of photography (like many other things) these days are nothing like they were 20 years ago. Now, its all about some art filters and everyone is an artist! (Sadly, many believe this.)
     
  6. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 Top Veteran

    792
    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Phil
    Whilst I generally agree with Don, the issue is that often even the "Oven" potentially needs to be known if you wish to recreate that exact dish, the unique flavours from a wood fired pizza oven cannot be replicated by a gas fired one.

    The oven analogy sort of goes towards having to know all the components including cooking time (shutter speed), oven temperature (aperture), Oven size (sort of ISO) as larger ovens give more even heat.... these things combined with ingredients and the skill of the cook (photographer) all lead to the stunning meal (photo) so knowing the oven (camera) is just one part of the entire dish.
     
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  7. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 Top Veteran

    792
    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Phil
    Oh wow... all those art filters I've ignored will make me a better artist..... now where is that manual?
     
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  8. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    The oven is definitely not irrelevant! :wink: But it is often thought to be the primary element.
     
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  9. pellicle

    pellicle Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 10, 2010
    Southport, OzTrailEYa
    pellicle
    although it would seem to me that anyone who has a m43 camera has a pretty decent 'oven'
     
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  10. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    Excellent! Food analogies!

    1. The Subjects - The ingredients

    2. The Camera and lenses - The knives and other preparation tools

    3. LR/PS - The Oven/BBQ etc

    4. The Internet - The food critics
     
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  11. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 Top Veteran

    792
    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Phil
    I'm more of...

    1. The Subjects - The ingredients

    2. Location, props, lighting, Lens choice, attitude etc - The knives and preparation

    3. The Camera and post processing - The cooking and dish presentation

    4. The Internet - The food critics
     
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  12. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    My favorite remedy for GAS (as regards yet more photography gear, guitars , and amplifiers) is to take up the gear I have in hand... and put it to use... GAS dissipates almost immediately! Works a charm!

    Unfortunately, it returns not long thereafter, most speedily while spending ilde times viewing forums!
     
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  13. shermanshen

    shermanshen Mu-43 Regular

    111
    Jul 28, 2014
    I have an amazing lineup of m43 gear and I think I have everything covered (except a fast wide angle lens). I'm very happy with the images that I'm capable of creating with the tools I have. I still want an em1, the 40-150mm f2.8, the 7-14mm f4, and maybe an rx1 to add to my collection. I know I don't need any of those things, but the GAS is strong.
     
  14. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    贾一川
    And I guess, for many that's not a bad thing, with proper (better) gear, everybody is more likely to produce something that at least satisfy themselves; however, this is the exact reason why serious photographers need to be pushed further, we are looking at a higher standard. We probably will always have G.A.S. and I would not consider that wrong, just less important.
     
  15. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    Oi! I'm quite happy with my standards, thank you very much!!! ;)
     
  16. biomed

    biomed Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 22, 2013
    Seattle area
    Mike
    You didn't mention the chef.
     
  17. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    What's the chef got to do with it? It's all about the equipment! ;)
     
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