Monday, November 05, 2007

Shooting the present

One of the great revolutions of the late twentieth century must have been the arrival of digital cameras. Everywhere you go now, you see them, and of course they’ve infiltrated the cellphone scene and the palm pilot area as well.

Everyone has one. I don’t think I’ve seen a person toting a ‘real’ camera since we’ve been in England, and the only person I know who still has one that he uses occasionally is a friend of mine back in New Zealand, whose hobby is photography. But even he’s succumbed to the convenience and ease of digital cameras.

I just wish we’d had one when we were in Rome thirty-three years ago. We’d have a lot more photographs, instead of the few we possess, and we’ve have actually been able to take more successful photos of things we only have scruffy photos of.

Of course proper cameras require you to take some care in what you’re photographing. Digitals don’t, and you can get rid of as much as you take if you want. That’s the great bonus of the system.

Our digital camera has long since superseded the proper camera we still have at home, and probably will maintain its dominance. Yet the photography processing shops don’t seem to be suffering. Plenty of people (unlike us, for the most part) want to keep ‘real’ photographs, even if they’re taken off a digital camera. We have hundreds of photos of our holiday over here on computer (and a back up zip drive) but not a one we can actually hand to someone. Strange how we accept such change, isn’t it?

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