The last decade has seen tremendous changes in photography. There are continuing developments that I could only imagine back in the days when I lugged around heavy camera equipment. My life has changed tremendously in the last ten years due to my transition to digital photography.
My Old Camera Days: Years ago, as public relations manager for a major insurance company, I often led a crew to shoot photos for advertising, news releases, magazine articles, conferences and other field assignments. We used 35mm Nikon single lens reflex (SLR) cameras. They were relatively small and lightweight, but every photo job required carrying a bag full of extras, including flash units, extra lenses and many rolls of film.
Earlier Years: More than a half-century ago, for my Navy and news reporting duties, I often used Speed Graphics, ponderous box-like cameras that required all the extras, plus heavy four by five-inch film insert frames. Actually, in the century between Matthew Brady’s Civil War scenes and Joe Rosenthal’s historic World War II Iwo Jima flag-raising image, there wasn’t that much difference in the heavy photo equipment.
Welcome To Photography’s Digital Age: Over the past decade, among the most revolutionary changes have been the elimination of camera film and its need for processing. Earlier, we shot with roll and plate film, and had to be sure we brought along enough for each assignment. Additionally, as we used our cameras we could never be certain our efforts were successful until we saw the processed film. Errors when taking photos or later in the darkroom could erase all the creative shootings of critical scenes and events. When this happened, important moments could never be captured again.
Today, on the job or vacation with digital cameras and smartphones, professional and amateur I have almost unlimited opportunities to keep shooting. No matter how complex the task, it can be completed with confidence of doing the job right.
One Small Digital Does It All: One of the most enjoyable aspects of today’s digital equipment is that everything an amateur photographer like me requires is included in the small, lightweight camera. There’s no need to carry extra lenses, flash unit nor rolls of film. Better still, there are continuing improvements that now include shooting video with the same camera.
Over the past decade, digital equipment has greatly changed all aspects of photography. Vacationers and other travelers can get virtually the same high quality results it once required professionals many years of experience to achieve.