Monday, March 30, 2009

Meet the Swinger

After years of waiting, I finally got my first "real" digital camera. Not being a pro, I just didn't shoot enough to justify the price of any digital camera that didn't leave me with that it's nice, but something is missing feeling.

Further complicating matters was the addition of a Kodak P850. Marketed as a prosumer camera, at a very consumer price point of about $200, the P850 did about 90% of what I want to do 90% of the time. All the things you want a snapshot camera to do, it did. Shooting in raw mode, you could get shots that blew up to 8X10 and looked quite nice. Since there was no film or processing to pay for, I shot more. Lots more. So much more that I was able to forget my background as a serious photojournalist, and just snap away like a fool. It had all the fun of the Polaroid Swinger, with the benefit of instant gratification.


The one only thing the new camera, a Canon EOS 40D, has in common with the Swinger is "it's more than a camera, it's almost alive." Alive, yes, but if the Swinger is a playful kitten, the 40D is a hungry tiger. Fun? Hell, yes! But it's a very, very different kind of fun.

Photography today is ubiquitous. The camera in most mobile phones is vastly superior to what you got with the Swinger. Here's a couple from my freebie Sony Ericsson.
Not bad at all. That fun niche filled by the instant camera is long gone. At this point, I suppose I should get all nostalgic abut that, but I can't. The fun of the Swinger was sharing the fun, and people are doing that now more than ever. It wasn't about the camera, but the pictures. So it is with the Canon 40D. With previous digital cameras, there was always that feeling that I could be taking a better picture with a film camera. That feeling simply isn't there with the new camera.

Undoubtedly, there will still be those with a passion for film. There will be those who enjoy that whole process. That used to be me, but not anymore.

1 comment:

adchick said...

Thanks for this, damn it...I feel so old. I remember that camera! The equipment is important, but more important is your vision...it seems you have both now.