<<< o >>>gone to pieces 18 comments + add yours
The bad news is that there's no news on my G5 – whatsoever; I took loads of shots with my FujiFilm FinePix over the weekend – and they're all crap; and the company I ordered my 20D from did have a delivery – but instead of the 25 or so cameras they were expecting they only got three. So I'm not overly delighted. The good news, maybe, is that I found another company who have assured me that they're getting a consignment of 20D's tomorrow, and I can have one of them. Hmmm ... I'm not going to hold my breath though as I know that they're in short supply and all the shops I've spoken to have had deliveries of far fewer units than they expected. We'll see. Anyway, the upshot of the above is that I've been archive raiding again. I took this at the same time as this shot, but didn't post it at the time as I thought it was a little too similar to put up. I haven't put up the EXIF data as, rather foolishly, I deleted the RAW file a couple of days ago. Things are not quite going as planned at the moment ;-)
4x3 + fylde coast + self-portrait
comment by steven at 09:13 PM (GMT) on 20 September, 2004

i like this one, each mirror has its own image...even the broken one has something to say.

maybe you should post some of those 'crap' pics you refer to above...let us judge them for ourselves. if not, that's cool too, i know how it feels to know in your head that a pic just won't do.

good luck with finding the 20D!

comment by peepee at 09:14 PM (GMT) on 20 September, 2004

Two words: A. MAZING.

comment by Matt at 10:16 PM (GMT) on 20 September, 2004

You know Ansel Adams use to teach a class in which he made his students shoot with a disposable point and shoot. He always said that there is so much more to photography than the camera.

I too would like to see some of the "crap."

comment by djn1 at 10:44 PM (GMT) on 20 September, 2004

The problem I have, with this camera at least, is that my hit rate is really low. With the G5 I reckon I was posting around one shot in 15, or maybe 20, but with the FujiFilm it's much higher. As an example: I stopped by the beach on the way home today as there was a really strong wind and I wanted to see whether I could capture its movement as it blew great clouds of sand up the beach and between the dunes. And I took about 15 shots, while sand-blasting the back of my neck, but most of them are truly awful.

As the FujiFilm is a point-and-shoot, with a rather dim and uninformative viewfinder, it's difficult to know quite what you've taken. Three or four of the shots seemed ok on the preview, but when I looked at them later they really weren't up to much – the exposure is off, I couldn't set the shutter speed, and so on.

All of which, I guess, is a way of saying that I do realise that the camera is only one element in the creative process, but I'm not sufficiently skilled with this particular one to generate a decent number of shots. I did manage a few good ones last week, but haven't been able to replicate it since. If I don't manage to take something decent tomorrow I'll put up the best of today's beach shots, which, if I'm honest, isn't crap, but it isn't too great either.

comment by pixpop at 12:30 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I like your title on this one, it suggests something of what's happening to your work. Analysis, followed by synthesis. Right now, it's analysis time aparently.

I too would like to see the crap shots.

comment by pixpop at 12:37 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

Oh yeah. Of course there's more to photography than the camera. But the camera has a huge influence. Look at Heather's recent pinhole work:


Still obviously Heather, yet with an entirely different feel than her regular work. Your efforts with the Fuji show this as well. And I'm sure there will be a noticeable effect with the 20D -- the pictures will obviously be yours, yet will be noticeably different from the G5 pictures. Not just in terms of resolution, or colour, but in the way it will change how you see things.

comment by Matt at 01:19 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I was hesitant to comment but I have enjoyed your site and your photos so much that I hated to see someone with so much skill feel so crushed by the absence of a camera. I have been trying to round up enough for a digital SLR myself but for now I am stuck with a point and shoot. I still have loads of fun and in my opinion have lots of post worthy photos.

Sorry if I offended in anyway.

comment by Joseph Holmes at 02:42 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

Of course it's true that the art isn't in the camera, it's in the photographer. But in fact, the more transparent a camera feels, the more the final photo reflects the photographer's vision. That's why people hate to let go of favorite cameras, even old, mechanical, primitive SLRs from decades ago -- because the camera has become essentially invisible to the photographer.

And that's why it's so damned difficult to move from a camera with negligible shutter lag, and a quick zoom, and fast focus, and long battery life to an old point-and-shoot. That better camera has put some expensive thought into making taking a picture more transparent. I lift my SLR to my eye and take a picure -- no wait for the camera to turn on, for the lens to s-l-o-o-o-w-l-y zoom into place, no long wait for the shutter release during which the entire reason for taking the picture is now long gone. No keeping an eye on the battery and remembering to do all those little power conservation things.

It's not just the quality of the image that improves with a fine camera, it's the quality of the experience. It's very hard to remember how transparent a camera can feel after you've gotten used to making all sorts of allowances for a slow point-and-shoot. In fact, until I went back to an SLR, I didn't realize how many great things I was simply letting go by without even lifting my camera. I'd basically given up. Taking pictures was often a frustrating experience. I'd hit a wall.

Which is all a long way of saying that, yes, the art is in the photographer, and using a pinhole camera for a day can teach many lessons, and it's a poor workman who blames his tools. Sure Ansel Adams had his students use a disposable camera for a day -- but what did Adams use every day? In the end, a fine camera is like a part of your body. You don't think about it, you simply use it. And a poor camera is like a pair of boots that don't fit very well -- better than nothing, but a lousy way to get somewhere.

Dave, I hope you get that 20D tomorrow!

comment by Micha at 03:08 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

From the title to the amazing shot I just love this photo. If you have some more 'crap', please, make my day :) Well done Dave!

comment by Lyle at 07:41 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I'm going to just ask one stupid question - if the 20D is causing so many problems with order quantities etc., why not get a 10D instead? The price has dropped significantly since the 20D was released, and it's still a stunning camera.

I'm just interested because I'm looking at getting a Digital SLR in the near future, and wondering what to go for - I'll be interested to see what you make of the 20D, and the results you get from it.

comment by RainKing at 11:15 AM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I have to admit I'm really looking forward to seeing what you can do with a DSLR. I know the camera is just a tool, but there are better tools than others. ;-)

Oh, and now I'm jelous. I want a 20D too.

comment by east3rd at 06:16 PM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I've always been a big fan of your reflection shots. This one is great!

comment by Scott at 06:30 PM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

I think the point Matt was trying to make is that just because you have a great camera does not mean that you will produce great photos. My SLR photos are pretty much "crap" because I have never spent the time to learn how to use it. Any shots I take with my point and shoot digital cameras that are aesthetically pleasing are only that way because of the subject and how they are framed...there's no creativity in terms of lighting, depth of field, etc. This is especially true on my PDA photoblog, but I sure do have a lot of fun with it.

Joseph is right, though, that in the hands of an accomplished photographer a great camera will greatly increase the quality of the art. I can't what to see what you do with your 20D. It may just drive me to (1) second mortgage the house; and 2) sign up for a photography class.

I am way out of my league here, so thanks for allowing me to comment on your site. I think that the dialogue aspect of blogging is important...even for photoblogs.

comment by photojunkie at 06:51 PM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

Reminds me of this shot i took in Louisville in March

But obviously the mirrors in your shot are cleaned more frequently.

comment by djn1 at 11:29 PM (GMT) on 21 September, 2004

Thanks everyone.

I think my point about my old FujiFilm was not that it couldn't take decent pictures, but that I couldn't take the pictures I wanted because I didn't have the control to create the shots that I was after. I think Joe's point is a good one; i.e. that Ansel Adams didn't use a point-and-shoot for his work. Sure, if you use such a camera you can get great results, but not as easily as with a better camera, and only under certain circumstances. So while Cartier-Bresson could probably have taken some great shots with a point-and-shoot, Ansel Adams would have found it much more difficult, simply because a low-res camera, with no control over exposure, just doesn't lend itself to that sort of work.

Lyle: I went for the 20D in preference to the 10D mostly because of the extra resolution.

Scott: go for the second mortgage, you won't regret it ;-)

Rannie: in many ways (despite the dirty mirrors) I much prefer your shot - the repetition works really well.

comment by Leigh at 03:55 AM (GMT) on 22 September, 2004

Expanding on what Joseph Holmes said and giving my point of view.

The camera I have is a low to mid range finepix with zoom capacity. I see it like a point and shoot camera, which is kind of frustrating given that I've used a Canon SLR AV1 with several lenses. filters ect. I'm yet to move on to a digital SLR (which is my next purchase). My old SLR is like a second skin to me, and that is why I completly understand what Joseph has said.

In terms of posting your pictures captured, I think everyone would love to view them.

This particular photograph by-the-way is very interesting, the colours are gorgeous. It reminds me of prism work I used to do with my old SLR.

It's wonderful, thanks for posting it :-)

comment by Clem at 05:01 PM (GMT) on 22 September, 2004

Asinum asinum fricat.

comment by Joe at 03:22 PM (GMT) on 25 September, 2004

Hi, is this that big dome on the seafront at blackpool oppostie the entrance to pleasure beach?