A photograph is never all the photographer’s doing – there’s always a middle man.
That would be the camera lens.
I have a handful of lenses that I shoot with, and each one has a different personality. My first serious digital camera was a Minolta Dimage 7Hi with a fixed 49mm lens. It was open and receptive; generous in that it shot a little bit wide, which came in handy when I trekked it down South and started pointing it at pyramids.
I have a little pocket Canon that is much the same – it shoots broad and without guile.
Recently my darlin’ companion spoiled me good with a Nikon D70s outfitted with two lenses, each one packing its own attitude: one high and tight (and a bit standoffish – she’s my shy girl) and the other goes wide like a movie shot in letterbox – he’s game for anything (he’s my gangly teenager – ready to rumble).
But the one that I cherish, curiously, with a warmth that exceeds the others, is my little Nokia cameraphone. I love the way he sees the world, the little imp. Frames it wide and magnifies it just a touch; takes the available light and then punches it up.
And spontaneous? Baby’s always game.
I picked him up almost 5 years ago and, really, it’s about time he was retired.
But I can’t. I just can’t do it.