It will come as no surprise to Fragments readers that I am hopelessly infatuated with light and color, particularly natural light and the colors of nature. I got my first "serious" camera in 1970. That Minolta lasted until 2002 when the strap broke and it fell to the pavement in Boston. By that time, I'd already given in to the temptation of digital photography and have never looked back. My first digital, the Nikon Coolpix, was delivered to Goose Creek on April 20, 2000 and it will soon be four years old. And if I am serious about this love affair with light, it is time to make a commitment to the future with a new camera, and I am getting shaky knees on the way to the altar. Forgive me as I confess my qualms and hopes and uncertainties in this matter over the coming weeks. I've really got to talk this out, you understand.
For the bulk of those thirty years of SLR photography, I was quite used to carrying a daypack full of camera bodies (two) and lenses (three or four) and filters and film and cable release and... but when the digital point-and-shoot came along, I carried only the camera, the size of a couple of candy bars, in my pocket. All the lenses were "built in", although there were many times I'd wished for a very wide angle or more telephoto than the Nikon Coolpix 950 could give me. Now, one issue of course is how much to invest. The other is buying a digital camera body (like the Nikon D70) and then also needing another three lenses (and lens cases) and filters over and above the camera, and another bulky camera bag to carry with me every time I walk out the door.
The bottom line, I suppose, has to do with resolution. At some point, unless a person plans to create a coffee-table book of images (and I might), the megapixel resolution of a camera at, say, 6 megapixels is going to be way in excess of what is needed to produce professional quality images of the size one would expect to see in even the finer magazine. And so the theoretical difference between a 6MP point and shoot and the higher quality of a 6MP SLR's better CCD is probably moot. Or at least this is my thinking at the moment. I'll let my photo-professional buddy Doug straighten me out when I meet with him tomorrow.
Meanwhile, for the one person who is still reading this blahblah entry, here's what I'm looking at today:
Doing my homework, I've read this excellent primer on How Digital Cameras Work. If you're planning on buying your first or fourth digicam, this is a great review of basic technology of non-film photography that may help you make a more informed decision about what to buy, and why.
And currently, the Fuji FinePix S7000 (released July 2003) for $400 (after the current $100 rebate) looks like it would have everything I require. I could be wrong.