Happy 2017

Mike and his Dancers, Disney World - Orlando, Florida

Mike and his Dancers, Disney World – Orlando, Florida

We didn’t do as much singing and dancing as Mike was doing on stage at Disney World, but we did have our annual get together, to ring in the new year. The same four families that meet for Thanksgiving, come over to our house for a New Year’s Eve party. Some of us have met for at least 16 years. It was nearly 3am when the family finally went to bed this morning.

So what’s in store for 2017?

Starting with gear, everyone’s favorite topic, I’ve decided to make no predictions of how many cameras I might buy. Every year, I think that I might cut down on my purchases, but to no avail. No doubt, I’ll find some unexplored camera niche. Last year, it was inexpensive and old digital cameras. Who knows for this year.

I can safely say is that I’m not looking to make any system switches. I have no plans to buy expensive full frame or medium format digital cameras. The Olympus micro 4/3 cameras are meeting my needs and honestly, does everything I needed them to do. My recent trip to Florida proved the point. With a single body and several lenses, all housed in a small bag, I was able to make effective shots in any condition.

Would a big beefy camera with a larger sensor make better quality images? Sure. But not without considerable expense and the loss of portability. There is a constant one-upmanship to get the best gear, but to what avail? If you have a setup that works, why change it.

If anything, I would like to experiment with older, more limited cameras. Be it digital or film. And I certainly have an ample supply to choose from. 2017 might be the year I go more retro. For things that matter, I will continue to use my modern cameras. But pushing the limits of older technology can be fun too.

2017 might also be the year that I finally move off of my Aperture workflow. Apple’s Aperture 3 is no longer supported and I’ve known for a while that I needed to switch my library management and post processing software. It’s easy to use multiple cameras since they all share the same workflow. But changing the core software and corresponding process has been a daunting challenge. In know many use Adobe’s Lightroom, but I’m not a fan of the user interface and library management. I’m thinking seriously of moving to Capture One. We’ll see.

It’s a great time to be a photographer, at least a photography enthusiast. The cameras are way beyond adequate and available at low prices, as long as you don’t get sucked into upgrading to the latest and greatest. Life as a Pro photographer continues to be challenging, at least in certain markets as written by Ming Thein in Malaysia. His 2017 outlook doesn’t sound very rosy. On the other hand, pro photographer and friend, Kirk Tuck, has an optimistic view of the coming year. He benefits from a healthy local economy and the ability to expand his professional services to video and more value added activities.

The great news for photo enthusiasts are that we are not beholden to customers or markets. We have the luxury of shooting whatever we want to. What limits us is our creativity. For me, I’ve realized that it’s my images together with my stories that work hand in hand. There’s really nothing special about my photographs, there’s plenty of great stuff out there. But my photos along with my stories and my perspective is what makes this blog unique. It may only appeal to a small audience, but I’m very thankful for you and your continued visits.

May you have a happy, healthy and creative 2017.

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