Tuesday, November 05, 2013

affordable tacos and affordable photography

The affordable, discrete, rugged, and always-ready Panasonic GX1 with 14mm pancake.

I have experienced a barrage of new camera announcements for the last few months and today I reached a point of saturation. I realized just how well past tired I was of it all when the final official reveal of the new Nikon Df (which must stand for "Dumb fools", as that's the marketing niche it's aimed at) occurred today. When I read faux-tography sites such as Forbes gushing about how wonderful the Df was, then read the reactions of real photographers such as Tom Hogan (The Df very well may be the first camera marketed and sold to the AARP crowd) and Mike Johnston (Omigod, be careful what you wish for), I knew for certain that Nikon had finally jumped the shark. And a $3,000 dollar shark at that.

Me, I just wait at the trailing edge of photography, where everybody drops their old and busted gear for the new hotness, and then I just pick up perfectly good equipment for pennies on the dollar. Like, for example, the GX1 with its 14mm pancake. Total cost was about $380. That's still a bit stiff for a cheap skate like me, but it's a damn sight cheaper than the three damn grand that Nikon wants me to drop on their butt-ugly new hotness silver Nikon Df.

If I want to get all nostalgic and go all retro, hell, I'll just run the files out as black and white, add a little noise for the grain (like I'm still shooting Tri-X and developing it in D-76), and there I am, retro photos from a retro-price camera (I paid $450 for my black OM-4 with 50mm f/1.4 Zuiko in San Francisco back in 1984).

Out tonight with my wife partaking of Lime Grill's Taco Tuesday where I spent the princely sum of $10.68 for our two meals. Yeah, I'm a cheap date, but then my wife has known this for the past 33 years.



  1. This is a great post...sums up, even clarifies my approach too...Wait a year or two, or five...I picked up a really clean Canon 5D to satisfy my full frame jonesing, $500! And I just purchased a lightly used Panasonic G5 with kit lens for $250. Do I have state of the art AF or even sensors? No, but I've not heard anyone complain about the technical quality of any of my images...I am a 'second shooter' at weddings for some of my full pro friends....I take the shots of the groom tying his bow tie whilst watching a 'how to tie a bow tie' YouTube video on his smart phone etc. Please keep up your human and personal posts!


  2. A good post and I totally agree. I like to call it behind the curve photography, and there is fantastic value in the market for previous models. Last year I bought an Olympus E-PL3 with kit lens for $300. And with a $60 3rd party adaptor I have access to all my existing lenses.

    When you think about it good photographers have been making great photographs since... photography was invented!

    When I see a new camera that I like the look of, such as the OMD-EM1, I think to myself, there's a camera I might buy used in 5 years time.

    For the time being I'm very happy with my E-PL3, and for a bit of nostalgia, my E-1, still capable of making fine 5MP images at ISO 100. Luckily I live in a sunny place!

  3. Yes, I still have an E-1 as well and a few regular 4:3rds lenses, especially the Zuiko Digital 50mm macro.


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