The Stone Chamber

Another shot from the Fort Gaines’ magazine using an 8mm fisheye lens and HDR bracketing. Very fun shot to get and also instructive, because it makes me think about something: namely, the fact that a camera could never take a shot like this unaided.

The modern camera is an amazing instrument. Essentially a computer with optics attached, it can take beautiful images and record useful information about them. But for all its sophistication, there are things it can’t do for you. Like what, you ask? The answers may surprise you…

Canon_EOS_450D_Xsi 200pxFirst, it can’t tell you what makes a good image. No camera can tell the difference between a car, a person, a dog or a building. All it knows is light levels. In the end, it’s up to you to make the creative decisions.

Second, it can’t show you the world the way your eyes do. It can’t adapt to changing contrasts without some special settings and extra software.

Third, that LCD screen on the back of your camera doesn’t show the same thing your viewfinder does. The viewfinder is simple optics, where the LCD is filtered by the camera’s sensor and intervening electronics.

Like I said, a camera is a fascinating piece of gear. But what it doesn’t tell you is often more useful than what it does. By learning your camera’s limitations and overcoming them, you become a better photographer. And your viewers get to see better shots.
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Written by The Twilit Lens

Freelance photographer and ponderer of the unusual. I welcome the presence of mystery and the unknown. Wonder is not absent from the universe, and there is still room for the child in those who haven't yet allowed their hearts to wither to dust.

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