Saturday, June 13, 2015

A 'Snap' decision



If you are pondering on buying a new camera and are debating whether to go for a point and shoot or a DSLR, then this article is not for you. There are umpteen number of sites on the web which point out the features and advantages / disadvantages of DSLR’s over point-and-shoots which should help you make your choice. But if you are still not able to zoom in on your preferred model despite the plethora of advice available online, then here’s my two cents below. Hope this helps.

I am normally a quiet and introverted person by nature, someone who likes to go by the book. But sometimes, I have surprised myself and my near and dear ones by rebelling against conservative thought and making unexpected decisions. My choice to purchase a DSLR against a traditional point and shoot was one of them. Mind you, when I purchased my first DSLR, I did not even know its’ full form. Photographic technical terms such as Shutter speed, ISO, Aperture, exposure, depth of field etc. were totally alien to me. I was a new born baby in the world of photography trying to rub shoulders with giants. And why did I make that choice in the first place? Call it some kind of inner impulse or something, but I am eternally thankful to God for putting that idea in my head.

It so happened that one day, I had some spare cash in hand and went to the nearest electronic store to get the latest point and shoot model that I was planning to purchase for a long time. I did not have any idea about DSLR’s and their capabilities at that point in time except that they were very expensive and used only by professional photographers or enthusiasts. My maximum budget was 25K rupees: more than enough to get me the topmost P&S model with all the latest features. But as I was looking around, I saw this Nikon D40 DSLR lying around with the other ‘big boys’. I ignored it at first but something made me turn back and look at it again (Destiny!!). The price tag read 26K rupees, 1K above my budget. Something in me made me ask myself that instead of buying a high end P&S (or pseudo DSLR’s as they were called at that time), why can’t I fork out 1K more and get the real deal? Negative voices in me started whispering, ‘Dude, that camera is for professionals and you don’t even know the P of Photography. Why are you wasting your time? Know your limitations and buy a P&S.’ For sometime these voices continued until suddenly, some wild impulse made me yell at them ‘SHUT UP!’ and they disappeared. Without any further thought I made my decision on the spot and purchased my very first DSLR camera. I felt like a kid struggling to learn riding a bicycle suddenly confronted with the challenge of driving a Harley Davidson.

Nikon D40 - My first baby

All my friends were totally baffled by my choice. They knew that I had a wild streak in me and made unpredictable choices sometimes, but this really took the biscuit – according to them.

‘Dude, why on earth did you buy this instrument? Don’t you know it’s for professionals?’

‘Are you planning to work part time for National Geographic or something?’

‘You should have talked to me before going ahead with this choice.’

These were some of the comments I had to face. But the die was cast and my destiny was sealed.

The first month was very trying. It was a steep learning curve for me considering that I was a newbie to DSLR’s and the world of photography. My first photos came out all shaky and blurred. The menu and choices available for totally bewildering and I was discouraged by repeated failures. But I persisted and slowly and steadily began connecting the dots. Since then I have never looked back. My friends who scoffed at my choice slowly began to see the huge difference in quality between their P&S and my camera. Now all of them have DSLR’s (Who’s laughing now? J). 

Canon EOS 7D

I started out with a Nikon D40 (with an 18-55mm lens) and now have moved on to a high-end semi-professional Canon EOS 7D with three high quality lenses. Photography has become one of my favourite passions. My Facebook and Flickr page are littered with photographs I have taken all these years. Now all I need is an excuse 
to take out my camera and shoot photos at the drop of a hat. My traveling and touring has reduced a lot at present, but that hasn’t stopped me at all. My favorite photography model nowadays is my cute one year old son.

I don’t know what impulse made me buy that DSLR that day instead of that boring old P&S( That’s right! P&S is boring now! It's like being asked to ride a Luna after riding a Harley / Bullet!), but there is not a day in my life I haven’t spent thanking God for that decision. My life has been so much more interesting since I took up photography as a passion. I am literally looking at the world with a new and fresh ‘perspective’ ever since I took up photography. My life would have been so much more boring if it had not been for that sudden wild decision I took that day.

When you are born, the world has already prepared a blueprint for you and expects you to follow a preset pattern. But there comes a time when you are faced with two choices: Follow your head OR Follow your heart. What you do will set the tone for your future life. Enough said.

Here are some of my favorite DSLR photos of all time which I want to share with you.













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