To use the camera effectively, know the bones of the camera

Know the “Bones of the Camera” to use it well

Anatomies in contrast. Image courtesy http://www.photographylife.com

A few months back, I bought a Fujifilm XT-4. I bought this because I intended to use this for street and travel photography. Despite all the research I have done over the last months regarding this camera, I omitted to study one crucial aspect. I did not examine the physical structure of the camera. When I received the camera, and studied the structure, I realized I must plan my photography well if I am to use the camera to good effect. Therefore, it is vital you know the bones of your camera.

Many years back when I started photography, I started with an SLR camera, shooting film. Most people by now must have seen me write about this, twenty-five million times, and will be sick of me. After film, I moved on to digital SLRs–crop sensor and full-frame.

The Basic Structure

The structure of a DSLR. Image courtesy wikicommons

To use any camera as a master, it’s critical to know something about the basic structure – the bones of your camera. If you look at the image, one difference will become obvious. With a digital SLR, a mirror stands in front of the sensor. In contrast with a film SLR camera, the mirror structure adds considerable weight to a digital SLR. However, it helps shield the sensor from dust. Don’t assume the mirror blocks dust: it helps shield the sensor.

Contrast this with the structure of a mirrorless camera. Nothing stands between the elements and the sensor. Therefore, when you remove the lens from the body, then you are inviting dust and the hostile world into your camera. If you do this often enough, you will spend considerable money on repairs.

When I was shopping for my Fuji lens, I noticed some of them have a “WR” mark against the description. “WR” means “Weather Resistant”. Fuji designed them to be secure against water and dust. This is a boon, in particular when you live in beautiful countries like my own.

Plan, and Ye Shall Succeed

However, we now come to the crux of the matter. If you want to use the camera effectively for a day’s photography, it is imperative your plan is impeccable. Ask yourselves a few questions:

1. What is your photography style, and how does it fit with what you intend to achieve? For instance:

a. Are you comfortable with prime lenses, or are you dependent on zoom lenses?

b. Are you walking around with deliberation or not? I’d like to illustrate. My wife will murder me soon because I am exploring a Leica point and shoot. I don’t always go for planned shoots. Often, I am in the market and want something I can use on the fly. This is where a good compact camera proves invaluable.

2. What sort of environment are you going to be shooting in?

a. Dusty?

b. Pristine?

c. Wet and windy?

3. What genre of photography are you going to do?

a.     Street

b. Natural light portraiture? Or studio work?

To Conclude. And, meet Rheinhold

Rheinhold & My Fujifilm XT-4

I advise against changing lenses often when on the field. When you do so, switch off the camera and point it down. However, if you are using a mirrorless camera, then I suggest you avoid changing lenses on the field. What now does this mean? Plan your shoot in advance!

Study the bones of your camera, plan your photography, care for the tools at hand and have fun!

Meet Rheinhold. You can see him in the image with my Fujifilm XT-4. Say hello to him!

Please read this article. It is also where I got the image in the post. https://photographylife.com/what-is-a-mirrorless-camera

And this article

Published by Rajiv

I have been around the block a bit. I've lived in four countries, and in many parts of my country. I have been fortunate enough to meet some really good people, and some really lousy ones, all of whom have taught me much. I am passionate about photography, writing, Indian history and continuing on this grand journey towards death.

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