eldh.co blog

The future of photography

August 11, 2013

I label myself an “enthusiast” photographer. I know basic things about optics and how a camera works, I understand the concepts of aperture, ISO and shutter speed and I spend some time and some on my interest. I enjoy the art of photography, and I admire those who master it.

A couple of months ago I got my hands on the Contax RTS that my grandfather used, and I’ve been using it this summer. It’s a magnificant camera, with a couple of very nice lenses to go with it (Zeiss 50/1.7, Zeiss 28/2.8 and Yashica 135/2.8 are the ones I’ve used most). Compared to the old Canon 450d the photos I took with the Contax, on real film, just had so much more soul.

I’m also a smartphone and internet junkie. I use VSCO Cam, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Path and I will probably use whatever the hot new thing is six months from now. Naturally I want to post photos now and again. Preferrably beautiful photos that give life to the moments I want to share.

And shooting with film is kinda slow. The time from shutter to screen is at least one week. As much as I love shooting on film, I realized I needed a proper digital camera. So I bought the Sony NEX-7 and a couple of lenses – 50mm, 16mm, fisheye adapter and a Lens Turbo to fit my old Contax Lenses.

And the NEX-7 is a great camera. It’s light and small, controls are pretty great, build quality is good and it looks nice. It takes great photos, and even though they don’t quite have the character you get from film, they still have plenty of life in them.

But I’m not completely satisfied. Digital photography should be so much simpler than this. I don’t want to pop out my SD card to transfer pictures to my computer, I don’t want to be stuck in Aperture just to share photos, and I don’t want to

Smartphone cameras will never completely replace real cameras. Most people won’t need a dedicated camera, but some people like to take really good photos, and for that they will always need cameras. But the photos need to be set free.

Here’s how I would like my photo workflow to be: Take photo -> unlock iPhone -> open photo app -> select photo -> make adjustments/apply filters -> post. If I don’t want to post it directly it should end up in my photo stream so I can process it later, on any device.

Today’s cameras still come from a pre-2007 world where people don’t carry around a high-end computing device. The Galaxy cameras from Samsung are an interesting idea, but I think you don’t need to slap a phone on the back of every camera, because every camera user has a phone in thier pocket.

With the NEX-6, Sony has at least added wi-fi and Eye-fi Mobi is an interesting concept, but both these seem a bit too clunky for me.

These baby-steps are in the right direction. But I want to see better integration with photo services, and I think the winner in the digital camera race is whoever decides to become king of the cloud.

Written by @eldh