All I want to know from reviews is how it feels in hand, the pictures it makes and what is the actual performance from a daily usage stand point. The sensor size, the sensor type and what kind of processors mean absolutely nothing — what matters is the photos.
Even more helpful: give me a year-out view, after you’ve spent some quality time with the camera, and really tested its capabilities.
What would make me love it more than what I already have? What are the limits of its use? Where have you taken it, and what did you see?
A few of the big photo sites take a stab at this philosophy, but I value reviews from individual photographers more than any review-heavy site.
It’s amazing: if you build a community place, a community will form, even if it’s a transient one.
Over the summer, we stayed at a Courtyard hotel – nice place, pool, convenient location, etc. And, as the name says, it had a courtyard in the middle of the hotel with picnic tables and trees and little walkways. Our hotel room had a porch that looked out on the courtyard.
The whole thing caught me off guard. Hotels, as I had experience them, were private places, where noise was kept down and you rarely saw the people in other rooms. But a courtyard? Where you could see people? Whoa.
And what do you know, people gathered there. A family brought a six pack of beer outside and sat on the picnic table to chat. People strolled by on their way to the pool. Kids ran around and played kickball. It was like being back in college, only with a more diverse crowd. It was great. We sat on the porch and watched the whole evening take shape.
If you build it, they will come, the saying goes. In this case, it was true. The evidence was gathering in front of us.
That made me think of the “courtyards” I’ve encountered in my online life: Twitter, my old Apple Newton blog, photography groups.I would still rather chat with someone in person about their (or my own) weird hobby. The nice thing about the Web is, you can have both in-person courtyards and online meeting places to talk about what interests you.
Make a gathering place, and like-minded people make a community. If you’re generous and open, those communities become stronger and closer.
More and more, I try to live in harmony with the seasons, not the clock.
Here in the Midwest, we’re experts at seasons. And I definitely pick projects and to-do items that reflect the time of year. Winter? Get outside and shovel, and a few photographer interviews. Spring? Yard work and thinking ahead to summer projects. Fall? Finish up projects, enjoy a shit ton of apple cider, try roasting some acorns, etc.
Maybe I’m a creature of habit, but the seasonal routines are very comforting for me.
Start the crockpots full of chili, folks. It’s autumn.
It could be stolen, or it could be lost. But it’s gone. The camera, and a roll of film with 20-ish exposures from my 365 project.
What a bummer.
That means most of September is missing. Maybe a bit of late August. Lots of sunrises and foggy mornings – those magical times when photography is so fun this time of year. The light changing, the leaves falling, the hot days and cool evenings.
It could be that I left my little rangefinder in my front seat, and then left the car unlocked overnight, a prime opportunity for a wayward thief. Or it could be that me, the absent-minded photographer, left the camera sitting somewhere out of sight, waiting to be discovered again.
The point is that I can’t leave the 365 half finished. No, I’ll load a roll of Lomo into my Olympus and keep going, and try not to pine for those lost photos from earlier this month.
Twenty years ago today, Dream Theater gave a name to the music I loved so much as a kid: progressive.
With Falling Into Infinity, they made an album that was also approachable, with a touch of metal, and it became one of my favorite albums of all time.
It’s supposed to be their “accessible,” radio-friendly album. That’s probably what helped me pick it up so easily. And then jams like “Peruvian Skies” here, with its crunch and twists and turns, sealed the deal.
A memory: driving up into the Black Mountains of Arizona, on my Route 66 road trip, with Falling Into Infinity as the soundtrack. Me looking over the edge into the desert void, wondering if I’d make it to the other side and on to California, with “Hell’s Kitchen” blaring and keeping me sane. Magic.