2016 has been an interesting year.
You know ‘interesting’ with inverted commas. Like when your best friend plays you a song they have just written and asks for your “honest opinion”. The song’s not great but you look into their expectant puppy-dog eyes and retort…
Um gee, that’s really, really, really ‘interesting’!
You’re a good friend after all.
It’s also been ‘interesting’ to note that my trousers seem to have shrunk over the course of the winter. I pin the blame on cheap elastic around the waistline! Taiwanese at a guess. Not the good stuff. These pants seemingly have contracted so much over the last few months that trying to get into them these days is like OJ and that ill-fitting glove.
So in 2017 I am utterly determined that I will once again ease into my strides rather than battle. Right now it’s rather like the death throes of a python trying to consume an antelope. Yup that classy! Wish me luck.
Oh and then there’s the matter of my photography…
Out with the old.
I’ve been using a Canon DSLR since about 2006. Just the entry-level models. The 400d for a few years and then an ‘upgrade’ to the 650d. Well I should more accurately say an update really. Both cameras have served me well as an amateur street photographer and avid traveller.
As one of my photographic heroes – the father of street photography, Henri Cartier-Bresson – once quipped…
“Your first 10,000 photos are your worst”
So true. So over the course of the journey I have begun to notice the limitations of these entry-level cameras. My major gripe relates to focus.
With just nine focus points and a cropped sensor soft focus was often a problem, and a disappointment. Primarily, then as now, I use my camera for shots of my hurricane-esque kids and folks on the streets. Movement is a constant. I really wanted to try to get my shots to be sharper than a Woody Allen one-liner and entry-level just wasn’t cutting it.
So I’ve only just gone out and purchased myself a Canon 5D Mark iii haven’t I! I have only had it for two days.
I finally deduced that a ten-year-photographic-apprenticeship was probably long enough. Santa has come early this year in a ‘From Saxon to Saxon’ kind of way. But boy it wasn’t cheap! After a house, a car or a holiday it’s probably the most expensive thing I have ever bought and I did have some quandaries.
After I hit confirm on the purchase I was actually wracked with guilt. No going back now boy!!
You see I had almost bought this camera on two prior occasions. However both those times were accompanied with a glass or four of red wine, a Spotify playlist and a late night Internet trawl. That would have been the wrong time. Akin to texting an ex after midnight.
However this time it does feel right. I researched for many days before buying, price compared like a shopaholic and watched more Youtube videos than a teenager on a rainy day at their grandparents.
And oh gee, after un-boxing and upon that first silky-soft shutter click the camera seemed to whisper to me – “you’ve made the right decision”.
The Canon 5D Mark iii and me.
I know we are going to be spending a lot of time together in the coming months. After all. My post purchase poverty means any paid entertainment is out of the question. Oh yes we’ll be bonding for sure. Even in our first two days together we’ve been out wandering. Hand in strap.
It feels quite odd actually after only a couple of days. Like a new pair of shoes. You’ve worn shoes before but not this pair. It’s quite foreign surprisingly. More than I expected it to be. I feel a little like a microlight pilot who has moved up to a Boeing. More the deer than the leopard right now.
But this is just nerves I guess, and hope! Like anything new it’ll take time to bed down. My overwhelming emotions are of portent, excitement and opportunity. But right now there is also more than a modicum of – what have I done? I can’t drive this thing.
Have you experienced a similar gear upgrade? Maybe you went from Nikon to Canon or visa versa. A DSLR to a mirrorless. How did you handle your learning curve? Did you ease into it or take your time? Any tips or feedback from your personal photography journeys would be fantastic to hear. Please comment below.
Oh… and speaking of ‘easing into things’ wish me luck about being able to fit back into my pants one day 🙂
L-Plates on. My Canon 5D mark iii gallery. (First two days)
Click an image to enlarge.
All photography © Saxon Templeton on canon 5D Mark iii.
My submission into the Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge.