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The Most Important Thing

Well the blog is already paying dividends, after the first entry I had comments from three friends suggesting projects, probably all of which I’ll have a go at.  They all involve things I haven’t done much of before and will, I’m sure, teach me loads.   Appreciate the input.

This Blog entry is about the most important thing in my life after people, which has to be my camera, a Nikon D750.  It’s now 3 1/2 years old and has a shutter count of 32,443, fair to say I’ve used it a lot.  I chose it because I like Nikon’s (and have Nikon lens’s) and because it’s full frame.  Professional camera’s are full frame so if I’m honest probably one of the main reasons I bought full frame is because I thought it made a statement that I’d finally arrived as a proper photographer.  Of course nothing could be further from the truth, we all know what makes a great photograph has nothing to do with equipment, it’s who’s driving the equipment.   It’s also true that great photo’s can often be taken with a mobile phone, you don’t always need a fancy camera.   However you will get better image quality with a camera like a D750 and it gives you is control over every aspect of a photograph which a mobile can’t.  Also some set ups you just can’t do with a mobile, such as the picture at the end of this blog.

Full Frame camera’s are expensive and if you read reviews about whether they’re worthwhile, for most of us, the benefits are tenuous.  The main benefit is image quality, which these days is difficult to tell, but after that it gets a bit blah blah (low light performance, depth of field and dynamic range).  Would I buy Full Frame again?  Not sure, the other half of Mouchoir Photography, my wife Ellison, has a Nikon D7200.  Same camera as the D750 just not Full Frame but £800 cheaper!  Can I tell the difference in the pictures they take?  Honestly, no.

You might be asking what Full Fame is?  It means the sensor (which ‘sees’ the picture and converts it into pixels) is the same size as 35mm film (36mm X 24mm).  The D7200 is a cropped sensor, 24mm X 16mm and just to put it in perspective the latest Samsung S20 phone (with a ‘fancy pants’ camera) has a sensor which is 9.5mm X 7.3mm.  As you can see from the picture below it’s pretty obvious when you look at the diameter of the lens (the bigger the sensor the bigger diameter lens).

Do I regret choosing the D750?  Not a bit of, it’s a fantastic camera.  However the main reason I love it might surprise you – buttons, it’s festooned with them.  The controls are so well laid out I can pretty much change or do anything without going into a menu, the D750 is so easy to use it’s a joy.  The only down side the is it is a bit of a lump (if you want a camera that’s going to be rugged and last then it will be a lump), so if you get one my advice would be buy a shoulder harness then you won’t even notice you’re carrying it (we use a Fomito Focus F-1 strap, £12.99 and a Joby safety tether).

Here’s a sample of the buttons on the D750, which photographers reading this will spot are for some of the things we often need to change.

I should finish with a picture, one I took as a project during COVID lockdown, a bit of product photography.  

In case anyone is interested in the setup here’s a picture of that as well, which is a bit ‘Heath Robinson’ but achieved what I wanted..  A big mirror, wireless speedlights, a bit of trial and error and a bit of editing (mainly to get rid of the join in the picture between the paper and the mirror).

More soon,

Vaughan

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