Thursday, August 11, 2011
Figuring these new tools out...
This weekend I went out with my mother, grandmother and little sister to visit my late grandfather's grave. Being that our intent was to straighten up the plot and lay down fresh flowers, it seemed prudent to bring a camera. Some people find the concept of photographing a funeral or grave site profane or taboo, but my family is intuitive enough to understand my method of grieving involves the lens. Photographs of the gravestone and arrangement were certainly taken, but those are private.
Not private, however, are the photos I can't help but take of my little sister. Like most kids her age, she's a spitfire, a well of drama and overflowing personality, and she makes for some awesome photographs. I took a few of her at random points, some in the car, some over dinner. Some strange thought crossed my mind earlier that day and possessed me into bringing both the XZ-1 and E-P3. While snapping pictures of my sister in the back of the car with the E-P3, I realized she was reticent to hold still for a photo and thus switched to the XZ-1 for sake of its faster lens. Once home and able to review the images in greater detail, something stunned me. I couldn't tell the damn difference from one photo to the other.
I'm sure such a discovery would offend some consumers, feeling that the E-P3 is a rip-off of a tool if a tiny, boxy little point-and-shoot could rival it in any capacity. Personally, this realization that my compact can give me comparable quality to my EVIL tool has me elated. What working photographer is ever satisfied without a backup system of some kind to fill the gaps present when the primary tool isn't up to the task at hand? When time is a critical element of a shoot and there's no time to switch between a telephoto prime to a wide-angle lens, what does one reach for? And if the tragic scenario should occur in which the primary tool, for whatever reason, becomes an expensive paperweight, what does that working man reach for?
Although the photos have yet to be processed and posted, I put this XZ-1/E-P3 duo to the test yesterday to put it to working practice. Understanding the nature of the images I'd be capturing beforehand, I simply attached the Lumix 14mm f/2.5 to the E-P3 and pocketed the XZ-1, a very light load. While I found myself shooting the E-P3 mostly for the wide-angle and edge on image quality at higher ISOs, I much more than once slung it over my shoulder, palmed the XZ-1 and fired off some incredibly clean macro shots of various items around my locale. Both tools saw nearly equal use, and the ease of switching between cameras made the transition almost transparent. It was a powerful combo, and a very enjoyable one to work with.
Can't wait to review the images (hopefully today) and share them, as well as yesterday's adventure.