Thursday, April 8, 2010

Colour Is Distracting? Cameras, Resolution and Photographers

    I have noticed something about colour as I have spent more time shooting in black and white, it is distracting. It is easy for us to miss the small details on an object, because the colours draw our attention to them. That does not mean that we shouldn't shoot in colour, that would be a silly suggestion, but what I'm getting at is that detail is often found at levels deeper than colour can show.

300mm F4 AF-S w/TC14E 1.4x (420mm), ISO3200, 1/160s @F.5.6

    I was tempted to shoot RAW yesterday at the bird sanctuary, just in case I wanted to use the colour later, but I stuck with black and white, and I am happy with the results. To see the ongoing results of my week of black and white photos, see my Black and White photo gallery.

Cameras, Resolution and Photographers:

    This topic of cameras and resolution comes up a lot among amateurs and pros alike. There are a few valid reasons to want a camera with higher resolution, and with high resolution (18MP) cameras like the Canon T2i hitting the market, those reasons are becoming less important. I say less important, because the T2i is the most affordable high resolution camera on the market, and like Canon Rebel cameras before it, the T2i will most likely be a big hit. Soon thousands of new photographers will be posting 18MP images all over the net, leaving me with a simple question, why? I don't think I'll be able to answer that question without using a higher resolution camera myself, which puts me in a tough spot, because Nikon does not make an affordable high resolution DSLR.
    At this point I am not very concerned about having more resolution, as the sizes of my images are fine in most cases. That being said, there are times when I do have to do some heavy cropping to get the image I want, with distant subjects, which means I would have a hard time making large prints of those images. All those factors have lead me to start thinking about testing out the Canon SLR system, not only for resolution, but because they have a lower priced mid-range telephoto lens lineup. Don't get me wrong, I love my D300 and 300mm F4 AF-S, but unless there is an increase in interest in buying photos from my collection, that will likely be the best camera gear I buy.

    Of course, that is not a bad thing, and to be honest I am looking forward to buying a full frame DSLR, or an improved DX camera if there is one, next year, rather than switching camera systems. I don't like the idea of switching systems, which would be expensive and force me to waste time learning new camera controls and menu systems, something I'd rather not do. I enjoy the fact that I know how to handle my Nikon SLR cameras without too much thought involved, which means I can focus on taking photos and not on my gear. Not to mention the fact that I would rather spend money on better lenses, than new cameras. I'll touch more on this tomorrow though.