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Anthony Baines
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Mike - this is a great article. There are a lot of excellent perspectives here. It sums up a lot of history that many of your readers lived through (well, the last couple of decades :-) anyhow). Just one point to follow up on some of the other comments. In your anthropological dissection of categories of photographer, I think there is a conceptual difference between "subject enthusiasts" and the "Ad Ams". "Subject enthusiasts" likely came to photography through their love of their subject, and have chosen the gear in relation to the subject on the basis of what is known to work well. Those of us who are enthusiasts for subjects such as wildlife (especially birds), aviation or some sports really do need the great big lenses to get the results we want. The early m43 cameras could not pick up focus on, say, a fast or erratically moving bird in flight and track it nearly as well as a DSLR, so the subject enthusiasts stuck with what worked, and ignored m43. Not only that, but until the last couple of years there wasn't a m43 lens to compete with a Canikon 500mm f/4. The subject enthusiasts have kept their big lenses and use them all the time. (The newer m43 cameras are a separate discussion, because then we get into the whole current mirrorless hoopla). "Ad Ams" - I'm really not sure who they are - gear heads? I don't think I've ever actually met someone whose behaviour fits your description.
I'm very sad to hear of Jane Bown's passing. Her work was inspirational for me, not least because of its (apparent) simplicity while revealing so much about her subject. I shall go back to her book Faces today.
Toggle Commented Dec 22, 2014 on Jane Bown 1925-2014 at The Online Photographer
Nikon D700. My third DSLR (following D70 and D300). I still have (and use) the D300, but the D700 is my go-to camera. It simply works well, first time, every time. I like the files it produces as well. Just wish it had a quieter shutter!
I'm another one with a 30+ year old Billingham. I got mine in 1982-ish (so long ago I can't remember exactly when), and I'm pretty sure I paid less than £40 for it in London. The were called Billingham Safari bags in those days. Very similar to the current 225. It has been my main bag ever since, although last year the zip to the main compartment finally went. Terrific value at not much more than £1 per year of use.
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Nov 3, 2011