Readers Questions

Thanks Steve - great to hear from you.
May I take a few moments to ask you something about photography? 

(1)  I was so proficient with my Nikons - especially the F5 - I think it was the best camera ever made.  However, I have to confess that I know nothing much about digital photography.  I have been thinking about getting back into it when I come to Thailand next year.

(2)I could try and get back in with Austral Press and submit stuff from there.  I have a little Sony Cybershot and it takes good pics for a compact, but after having so much latitude with my Nikon SLRs - I find it very limiting.

(3)  My question relates to how much I would have to spend - or better still - at what level of entry I would have to aim at to get a decent digital SLR?  I always buy good things and don't believe in junk, so I would probably prefer a top range professional camera.  However with the hit my finances have taken that level of entry may be too expensive.

(4)  I like Nikons - do you know much about their specific cameras and which one would suit me?

(5)  How much fiddling around do you do in the computer afterwards - or do you try and nail it in-camera?

(6)  I think Stick is into photography a bit isn't he??  do you make your living in Thailand from Photography?


Phil –

You asked some really great questions, each one deserving of its own learning topic.  Allow me to briefly answer your questions here, and if you have further questions please forward me the topic and I’ll add it to the list I use to pull topics from and will get to it as soon as I can.

  1. I used a Nikon F5 professionally for a few years.  It’s a fine film camera.  The new F6 beats it in almost every way though, check it out, it’s Nikon’s last film camera. 
  2. You are going to find that stock photography has greatly changed in the last decade.  I used to make a pretty decent income each year from stock, but now that Getty Images and many others are offering “micro stock” with images being licensed for use for as little as $2-$3, many find it not that profitable or worth the trouble any more.  More, the agencies (the good ones) demand certain cameras be used.  Everyone has a digital camera these days so they tend to be very selective.
  3. This depends heavily on what you need.  I spent over $50,000 to get into Nikon on a professional level seven years ago.  Two years later I sold that gear and spent about $60,000 equipping myself with Canon gear.  Others buy a $800 DSLR and start shooting weddings the next day.  This heavily depends on what services you intend to offer and how well you intend to perform those services.  On an amateur level, for a hobbyist, it’s easy to spend a solid $5000,00 getting started.
  4. I’ve very familiar with both Nikon and Canon.  If I purchased a Nikon DSLR today for myself, it would probably be the D700.  Again, it depends on what you plan on doing with it. 
  5. With my workshops I plan on spending AT LEAST 50% of the time on the computer teaching how to process files.  Of course you always try to do as much in the camera as you can, but digital photography has really changed how things are done.  Consider your computer as you did the darkroom.  Both take significant skill and time to master those skills.
  6. Stick is an avid hobbyist and turns out some good work.  Take a look at his galleries he posts on this site.  I have a very important gig coming up this November and I needed a qualified assistant.  By qualified I mean someone who not only knows how to carry my gear, but also can shoot side by side with me on an equal basis.  I asked Stick to work with me on this important assignment.

I know these answers will probably spark many more questions and I’ll be glad to answer them as separate topics.  For now I hope this helps


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