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IN MY EYES: Cameras

If you are a photo enthusiast, it’s a must to have a camera.

Taking photos in a snapshot makes the world go round for amateur or professional photographers.

I am a photo enthusiast, fellas.

I love photography.

I love photojournalism.

But I profess, I am not the best. At my age, and after battling with life for several decades, I have not waned a little in my love with photography. But I am still learning many things about photography.

Way back in the 80s, 90s and in the first half of the next decade, we, photographers used the DSLR with films.

I loved those years, fellas.

They were the most productive years in my career as a teacher-photographer. It all started when a fellow teacher offered to sell his Minolta SLR camera for P1,500. It was run, then, by 2 LR-44 camera battery cells. He acquired that from another teacher who was in dire need of money. Because he had two other SLR cameras (Pentax and Canon), he said he didn’t need another one for his photo business. But when I tried it in one of the school programs, I noticed it would get stuck once in a while. The shutter won’t work consistently. Until one day, the shutter release totally won’t work anymore.

I got distraught.

Was I sold a junk? a piece of scrap?

I referred the problem to one of my friend photographers in Vigan City who referred me to a father-son tandem in San Fabian, Pangasinan. There I flew immediately one very early morning and before noon, the camera was already fixed. It was also treated with a nice gloss in another camera shop so much that it looked already very new! Wow. I bought a nice camera bag and upon my return to Ilocos, my adventure in the world of photography officially began.

It was a good sideline for teachers like me, fellas.

You earn extra money in school programs, graduations, recognition days and on Saturdays and Sundays, in weddings, burials, baptism ceremonies etc.

But my best moments came when I got married with photojournalism. I trained much and then trained a lot of student-photographers. We competed practically around the country. Photojournalism brought me to the farthest ends of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao and propelled my career to greater heights when I was invited to talk about it in other towns and provinces.

Then came the digicam — the point-and-shoot type and the DSLR.

The film-fed SLRs suddenly started to get out of fashion. The last time I used my 2 film-fed SLRs (I bought another one a year after purchasing the first one) was when I was invited to cover a summer wedding ceremony for my wife’s best friend who got married to a prosperous farmer in Gonzaga, Cagayan. While doing the job, an intruder suddenly appeared and started taking shots with his digicam, a Nikon D-3000 DSLR, maybe trying to impress that the days of the film-fed cameras are already over. But I composed myself and finished the job inspite of the intrusion.

The following month, I bought my first DSLR digicam after a day of researching online.

The following year, I bought another. When I bought my second one, I researched online extensively particularly when it comes to choosing between Canon and Nikon. Both have served me the last ten years already, fellas, and they are still working, although their outputs are no longer as sharp and as crisp as before.

Today, the advent of the touch screen cellphone has again put the DSLRs into jeopardy.

Brands such as Oppo, Samsung, Huawei, Asus, My Phone and Cherry mobile equipped with photo-video stabilizers and very high resolutions are now the primary interests of other photo-enthusiasts like me. These and other brands have indulged in a war for marketing since these phones are not only used for communications and photography, but also for social media, online researches, and gaming but it also has calculator, built-in clock, calendar, radio, video player, photo storage, photo editor, e-mail, MS office applications, maps, sound recorders and other wonderful features.

A business photographer pioneered the practice of editing his wedding pictures in his cellphone tablet and he said his outputs nowadays are better, more creative and more salable!

But an aging photographer said that it has affected his photo business tremendously.

“Paano, di na sila kumukuha ng mga photographers kapag meron silang okasyon. Sila-sila na lang gamit ang kanilang mga cellphones,” he said.

Moreover, a lot of cheap point-and-shoot type digicams have flooded the market where one can buy one for as low as P2,500. But these, too, have been shadowed by emerging touch screen cellphones with hi-tech features.

But I profess, none of these digicams or cellphones can still beat the DSLRs. Using the DSLR in any occasion gives the impression that the photographer is somebody professional while those using their CPs are “amateurish.”

The world keeps on turning fellas, and by the next decade, new technology will again rule the world of photography.

Meanwhile, let’s get going whether we use the DSLR, the point-and-shoot digicam or the hi-tech cellphone or tablet.

How about the film-fed SLRs, fellas?

Anybody who still got films?