Every few months the top camera and film brands put out new camera models of exquisite proportions—the very definition of eye candy to a photographer. These cameras taunt us with their endless features and promises of even better photographs; they make it easy to want to go out and drop thousands and thousands of dollars. But getting back to the basics of photography is important, and many times much cheaper. The camera doesn’t make the photographer, but the photographer most certainly makes the camera:
Professional fashion photographer Lara Jade was invited to test her skills in the “Pro Tog, Cheap Camera Challenge” put on by DigitelRev. She was given a professional fashion model, couture clothing and one simple – very simple – toy camera: the AnPanMan (Bread Superman) digital camera. It boasts 0.3-megapixels, a tiny LCD display, and a talking button which spouts words of encouragement—and that’s about it. A moment of utter astonishment was quickly taken over by fervor and creativity for the challenge.
Jade was quick on her feet, picking out intriguing backgrounds, using the model and the outfit in contrast or harmony with the setting and finding ways to create interesting camera effects. She would shoot around the scene from different perspectives, using posed moments or motion.
The tiny LCD display and lack of functionality seemed to have little effect on Jade’s abilities. With a little post-editing using Alien Skin Exposure 7 to process the tones, she produced beautifully imagery with a dramatic and elegant feeling.
It just goes to show you don’t need to spend absurd amounts of money on top of the line gear to create stunning images. This type of challenge brings photographers back to the basics of photography: playing with light, color, and composition. It forces us to get creative and use what we have without all the fancy bells and whistles of expensive gear.
“I felt like I had a really great time… a great experience. It took me back to my roots as a photographer and reminded me of what it is to take a great image.”
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