Editors Note:


EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Size Flatters...

Pan DownI always knew our modern fancycams would appear ludicrously huge one day. I was wrong. They already do. Case in point: In the attached photo, it appears I'm balancing the engine block of a VW bus on my shoulder. In fact, it's just my axe: a slightly battered Sony XDCam that I know better than some rooms in my house. For nearly six years now I've dragged the damn thing around with me - so much so that when I dream at night, it's usually stuck to my imaginary face. As field cameras go, it is an apex predator and with it by my side, there's no deadline or live shot I cannot slay. Were the camera a guitar, it'd be a Fender Stratocaster with SRV etched on its surface. Yes, you could say I love this electronic recording device - in much the same way other men love automobiles, power tools or football teams. Too bad I'll soon lose her...

No, I'm not hanging up the lens to pursue professional table-tennis (not yet, anyway). But a smaller, lighter, weaker rig IS in my future and until I get in the business of buying TV equipment (instead of just transporting them across county lines), there's not a lot I can do about it. Besides, I think I'm ready. A diminished lens will be harder to use. What used to be accomplished through mere muscle memory will now require three levels of computer menu maneuvering that I will no doubt fat-finger for the first year and a half. But it will no doubt be Hi-Def, a format I've foamed at the mouth over ever since WRAL put 'em on the street so many moons ago. What's it matter that it's made of blended polymer? Or that every other press conference will be as soft and bouncy as that famous shot of that Branch-Davidian compound the ATF torched in Waco... And outside of every sports shooter I've ever met, who really cares how big your unit is? Okay, so trading in an shoulder-mounted cannon for a plastic pea-shooter is a little emasculating, but as the father of teenage girls, that's a concept I'm pretty familiar with...

Just don't ask me to downsize my career goals. They're already pretty diminished.

3 comments:

Amanda said...

I predict another generation of crippled retired photogs due to the rise of babycams.

Them babycams are begging for a case of severe elbow tendinitis if you hold the damned things handheld more than 7-8 minutes at a time long term...and I'm a whole heck of a lot younger than you.

turdpolisher said...

welcome to the age of the baby-cam. axe envy is something i learned to deal with years ago. those miniature lenses suck. the menus are hard to navigate, the viewfinders are soft, they're impossible to hold steady, you'll need an hmi on every shoot, and they won't do one thing to improve the quality of the produce, but the beancounters will be happy.

Weaver said...

Nah. I don't think we'll have those problems. lol.:-)